The issue of abortion in the U.S. has historically been highly controversial with passionate advocates on both sides of the spectrum. Federal law protects a woman's right to choose an abortion since the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade in 1973. Some states have limited access to abortion through legislation and other means, as pressure from both sides of the debate have made abortion a highly volatile area of law.
Montana Abortion Laws
In Montana, there are a number of restrictions imposed upon abortion. Below, you'll find a few of these restrictions.
Parental Notification Law
Montana has a law on the books that “prohibits a physician from performing an abortion on a minor under 16 years of age unless a physician notifies a parent or legal guardian of the minor at least 48 hours prior to the procedure."
Under this law, notice is not required if:
In 2013, the state amended the law to require notarized parental consent and proof of identification. Both laws face legal challenges in the courts today .
Similarly, the law requiring a waiting period before a woman can get a legal abortion is being challenged in the Montana court system.
Montana Viability Law
Montana bans partial-birth abortions after a fetus has become "viable."
Other Montana Laws Pertaining to Abortion and Unborn Fetuses
The basic provisions of Montana's abortion laws are listed in the following chart. See FindLaw's Reproductive Rights section for additional articles and resources.
|Code Section||50-20-101 to 112; 50-20-401; 50-20-201 et seq.|
|Statutory Definition of Illegal Abortion||
Use or prescription of any instrument, medicine, drug, or other substance or device to intentionally terminate the pregnancy of a woman known to be pregnant, with an intention other than to increase the probability of a live birth, to preserve the life or health of the child, or to remove a dead fetus.
Partial Birth Abortion: Unlawful except to save the life of mother when endangered by physical disorder, illness, or injury when no other medical procedure would save the woman's life.
|Statutory Definition of Legal Abortion||
After viability, if necessary according to M.D. to preserve life or health of mother; procedure utilized must not negligently or intentionally endanger life of fetus unless to preserve mother's life.
|Penalty for Unlawful Abortion||
Violation of infant protection; violation of abortion practices by M.D.: felony, fine to $1,000 and/or imprisonment to five (5) years; violation of consent provisions or of inducing woman to have abortion: misdemeanor, fine to $500 and/or imprisonment to 6 months; no penalties may be placed on the mother; illegal partial birth abortion: felony with fine up to $50,000 and/or 5-10 yrs. in prison and permanent revocation of physician's license.
Current legal challenge to the law. Law placed on hold.
|Residency Requirements for Patients||N/A|
Note: Montana abortion laws are constantly changing--contact a Montana constitutional law attorney , or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
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Montana Abortion Laws: Related Resources
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