National Partnership for Women & Families

Abortion: Mandatory Counseling | In the News

A number of state legislatures and organizations put barriers between women and abortion care by directly interfering with a woman's medical care. Mandatory Counseling Requirements impose lawmakers into medical offices by forcing medical professionals to provide state-mandated information to women seeking abortion care. In many instances, the information they are required to provide may be false, such as the alleged connections between abortion and breast cancer or suicide.

Pa. Mother Sentenced to Prison After Obtaining Abortion Drugs Online for Daughter Tells Her Story
In the New York Times Magazine, Emily Bazelon provides the first public interview with Jennifer Whalen, a Pennsylvania woman who was sentenced to prison after purchasing medication abortion drugs online that her daughter used to terminate her pregnancy.

Pa. Woman Sentenced to Prison After Obtaining Abortion Drugs Online for Daughter
A Pennsylvania woman has been sentenced to up to 18 months in prison for purchasing medication abortion drugs online and giving them to her teenage daughter, who used them to terminate her pregnancy, Reuters reports.

Pa. Bill Aims To Protect Provider-Patient Relationship
Two Pennsylvania lawmakers on Monday introduced a bill (HB 2303) that aims to prevent government policies from impeding on patient-provider relationships, the Pittsburgh Business Times reports.

Featured Blogs
"Massachusetts is Rushing Through Legislation To Fix the Supreme Court's Ruling on Buffer Zones" (Culp-Ressler, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 7/17) and "States Prescribe Bad Medicine for Women Seeking Abortions" (Shugerman, Ms. Magazine blog, 7/16).

Featured Blogs
"How Bad Medicine is Sweeping the Country, One State at a Time," (Culp-Ressler, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 7/14); "Tennessee Arrests First Mother Under Its New Pregnancy Criminalization Law," (Culp-Ressler, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 7/11).

Perinatal Hospice Notification Requirement Becomes Law
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) has signed into law a bill (HB 2685) that will require abortion providers to notify women whose fetuses have anomalies incompatible with life that they may seek out perinatal hospice care instead of abortion, the AP/Tulsa World reports.

La. Senate Advances Mandatory Counseling Measure
The Louisiana Senate voted 30-4 to pass a measure (HB 1262) that would require women seeking abortions to be given written materials on the potential impact of the procedure, as well as information on human trafficking, abuse and the illegality of coerced abortion, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports.

Ala. Antiabortion-Rights Bills Head to Gov.
The Alabama Senate this week approved two antiabortion-rights bills (HB 489, HB 494), but the chamber did not vote on two other House-approved abortion-related measures before the legislative session ended on Thursday, Reuters reports.

Ala. Antiabortion-Rights Bills Head to Gov.
The Alabama Senate this week approved two antiabortion-rights bills (HB 489, HB 494), but the chamber did not vote on two other House-approved abortion-related measures before the legislative session ended on Thursday, Reuters reports.

Ky. Antiabortion-Rights Bills Fail in Committee
A Kentucky House Committee last week rejected three antiabortion-rights bills, including two (HB 575, SB 8) that would have required women to be shown an ultrasound before an abortion and another (SB 3) that would have mandated face-to-face consultations before abortions, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports.

Mo. House Advances 72-Hour Mandatory Delay Measure
The Missouri House on Tuesday passed a bill (HB 1307/1313) that would triple the state's mandatory delay period before an abortion, from 24 hours to 72 hours after a woman sees a physician, the AP/ABC News reports.

Proposed Changes to S.D. Pre-Abortion Counseling Law Head to Gov.
The South Dakota Senate on Tuesday approved a measure (HB 1180) that would modify the state's pre-abortion counseling and mandatory delay law by prohibiting crisis pregnancy centers from affiliating with adoption agencies, the Rapid City Journal reports.

Featured Blogs
"STUDY: Looking at an Ultrasound Doesn't Change Women's Decision To Have an Abortion" (Culp-Ressler, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 1/10) and "Court Bypasses Abortion Test Case (UPDATED)" (Denniston, SCOTUSblog, 1/13).

Legal Fights Over State Laws Offer Ample Chances for Supreme Court Intervention
It is "only a matter of time" before the Supreme Court decides to hear one of several ongoing challenges to state-level abortion restrictions, USA Today reports.

Fight Over Tenn. Antiabortion Ballot Measures Begins With Election One Year Away
Although voting is a year away, abortion-rights opponents and supporters in Tennessee are launching campaigns to sway voters' opinions on a proposed constitutional amendment that would restrict abortion access, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports.

Va. Gov. Candidates Spar Over Abortion-Rights Issues
In the Virginia governor's race, state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) and Democratic nominee Terry McAuliffe both are attempting to portray the other as an extremist on abortion-related issues, the AP/NBC4 Washington reports.

ACLU Files Lawsuit Over Antiabortion Provisions in Ohio Budget; NYT Examines State's Incremental Strategy
The American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio on Wednesday challenged three abortion-related provisions in Ohio's current budget, the AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Ohio Women Rally Against State Budget's Abortion Restrictions
Women's rights advocates rallied at the Ohio Statehouse on Wednesday against state budget provisions that they said are threatening women's health and rights, the Columbus Dispatch reports.

Planned Parenthood Challenges Ind. Medication Abortion Law
Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky on Thursday filed a federal lawsuit challenging an Indiana law (SB 371) that tightens restrictions on medication abortion and could end use of the procedure entirely at the organization's clinic in Lafayette, Reuters reports.

Planned Parenthood Lawsuit Over Kan. Antiabortion Law Narrowed to One Provision
U.S. District Judge Kathryn Vratil on Monday approved an agreement to narrow a Planned Parenthood lawsuit against a far-ranging Kansas law restricting abortion, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports.

Texas Bill Would Require Adoption Class Before Abortions
Texas Sen. Eddie Lucio (D) has proposed a measure that would require women to take a class on adoption 24 hours before obtaining an abortion, the AP/Lubbock Avalanche-Journal reports.

Doctor's Incorrect Declaration Shines Light on Confusion Over Wis. Admitting Privileges Law
An affidavit filed by a doctor in support of Wisconsin's new abortion regulations (SB 206) included inaccurate information, demonstrating the confusion over whether abortion providers will be able to gain hospital admitting privileges if the law is upheld in court, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Planned Parenthood, ACLU Quickly Challenge Wis. Hospital Admitting Privileges Law
Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the American Civil Liberties Union on Friday filed a lawsuit seeking to block a Wisconsin law that requires abortion providers to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals, the Washington Post reports.

Kan. Judge Blocks Some Parts of Antiabortion Law, Others Take Effect
A Kansas judge on Friday temporarily blocked provisions of a state law that require abortion providers to post certain information on their websites and redefine medical emergencies in a way that critics say could restrict abortion access, the AP/Washington Post reports.

Planned Parenthood Seeks Immediate Hold on Kan. Antiabortion Law
Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri on Monday requested a temporary injunction blocking enforcement of a Kansas antiabortion-rights law while a lawsuit determining its constitutionality is resolved, the AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Planned Parenthood Challenges Kan. Law Requiring Abortion Providers To Tell Women Certain Information
Comprehensive Health of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri on Thursday filed a lawsuit arguing that a Kansas law requiring abortion providers to tell specific information to patients violates the providers' freedom of speech, the Kansas City Star reports.

Maine Legislature Rejects Bill Requiring Physicians To Advise Patients on Alternatives to Abortion
A Maine legislative committee on Friday rejected a bill (LD 760) that would have required health care providers to provide patients with information on alternatives to abortion, the Bangor Daily News reports.

Featured Blog
"Florida's Racist Anti-Choice Bill Prompts Walkout by Female Legislators" (Amanda Marcotte, RH Reality Check,4/28).

Kan. Gov. Brownback Signs Sweeping Bill With Several Abortion Restrictions
Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (R) on Friday approved a far-reaching antiabortion-rights bill (HB 2253) that restricts access to the procedure, penalizes entities associated with abortion providers and declares that life begins "at fertilization," the AP/Topeka Capital-Journal reports.

Sweeping Kan. Antiabortion Bill Heading to Gov. Brownback; Wichita Clinic Opening for First Time Since Tiller's Death
The Kansas Senate on Tuesday voted 29-11 to pass a far-reaching antiabortion-rights bill (HB 2253) that restricts access to abortion care and penalizes entities associated with abortion providers, the AP/Chicago Sun-Times reports.

Kan. House Approves Sweeping Antiabortion Bill, Rejects Proposal To Add Exceptions Late in Pregnancy
The Kansas House on Tuesday gave preliminary approval to a broad antiabortion-rights bill (HB 2253) with several provisions aimed at restricting access to the procedure and penalizing entities associated with abortion providers, the AP/Olathe News reports.

S.D. Gov. Signs Bill To Lengthen Waiting Period Requirement
South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R) on Friday signed into law a bill that excludes weekends and holidays from the state's 72-hour waiting period before abortions, which would extend the wait to six days for a woman who seeks an abortion the Friday before a three-day weekend, Reuters reports.

Kan. House Committee Approves Sweeping Abortion Bill
The Kansas House Federal and State Affairs Committee on Thursday approved a broad antiabortion-rights bill (HB 2253) with several provisions aimed at restricting access to the procedure, the Lawrence Journal-World/Kansas City Kansan reports.

S.D. Senate Advances Bill To Extend 72-Hour Waiting Period Provision
The South Dakota Senate on Thursday voted 24-9 to approve a measure under which weekends and holidays would not count toward a mandatory three-day waiting period for women seeking abortions in the state, Reuters reports.

Ky. Senate Approves Two Antiabortion Bills
The Kentucky Senate on Friday voted 31-4 to approve two bills that would require new steps before a woman could have an abortion, the Lexington Herald-Leader reports.

Ind. Bill Would Require Abortion Providers To Give Women State-Developed Information To Dissuade Them From Abortion
Two Indiana senators have proposed legislation (SB 101) that would require the state's health department to develop written materials that doctors would have to give to women seeking abortions, the Louisville Courier-Journal reports.

Family Physicians Group Decries 'Legislative Interference' in Physician-Patient Relationship
The American Academy of Family Physicians at a meeting last week passed resolutions supporting physician-patient confidentiality and the right of doctors to follow their consciences, MedPage Today reports.

Salon Examines Everyday Impact of Abortion Laws on Doctors, Patients
Although political battles over abortion frequently make headlines, the details of how abortion restrictions affect the lives of women and medical personnel day to day "tends to stay hidden inside clinic walls," Salon reports.

State Laws Hinder Access to Abortion Information, Limit Women's Options, Experts Say
Although abortion is legal in the U.S., state laws are making it increasingly difficult for women to obtain abortions or even to get information about the procedure, the AP/Washington Post reports.

Many States 'Twist Medical Evidence' in Abortion Laws, USA Today Editorial Argues
Several opinion pieces and editorials on Monday discussed the significance of Rep. Todd Akin's (R-Mo.) remarks that pregnancy from rape is rare and that women's bodies can block a pregnancy from "legitimate rape."

La. Abortion Laws Take Effect
Two laws took effect on Aug. 1 that place further restrictions on abortion care in Louisiana, WRKF reports

Recent Court Rulings Fail To Preserve Women's Constitutional Rights, New York Times Editorial States
"At a time when abortion rights and women's access to affordable contraception are threatened by political attacks, judges in three newly decided federal cases failed to preserve constitutional protections for women," a New York Times editorial states.

S.D. Taxpayers Foot $377,735 Bill To Defend Antiabortion Law
The defense of a 2005 South Dakota abortion law has cost taxpayers $377,735, according to the state Attorney General's Office, the Sioux Falls Argus Leader.

Federal Appeals Court Upholds S.D. Abortion Law's Suicide Clause
The full 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday upheld a provision of a South Dakota abortion informed consent law that requires physicians to tell women that abortion increases the risk of suicide, the Sioux Falls Argus Leader reports.

Judge Allows Some Parts of S.D. Abortion Law To Take Effect
A federal judge on Wednesday ruled that South Dakota may begin requiring physicians to ask women various screening questions before an abortion, but other provisions in the same law will remain blocked until she rules on a lawsuit challenging the statute, the AP/San Francisco Chronicle reports.

N.H. Senate Rejects Waiting Period Bill
The New Hampshire Senate on Wednesday rejected for the second time a bill (HB 1659) that would require women to wait 24 hours before obtaining abortion care, the AP/Foster's Daily Democrat reports.

N.H. House Revives 24-Hour Waiting Period Measure
The New Hampshire House on Tuesday voted to revive a measure (HB 1659) that would require women to wait 24 hours before obtaining abortion care, the AP/ Boston Globe reports.

Kan. House Passes Antiabortion Bill That Alters Tax Laws, Restricts State Employees
The Kansas House on Monday passed a bill (H Sub SB 313) by an 88-31 vote that would alter tax laws to bar indirect contributions to abortion providers and possibly jeopardize the accreditation of the University of Kansas Medical Center's obstetrics and gynecology program, the AP/Washington Examiner reports.

Ariz. Gov. Brewer Signs Sweeping Antiabortion Bill That Includes 20-Week Ban, Medication Abortion Restrictions
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) on Thursday signed into law a bill (HB 2036) that includes several abortion restrictions, including a ban on the procedure after 20 weeks of gestation in nearly all cases and other limits on abortion, Reuters reports.

Ariz. 20-Week Abortion Ban Goes To Gov. Brewer
The Arizona House on Tuesday voted 37-22 to approve a bill (HB 2036) that would ban abortion after 20 weeks of gestation in nearly all cases, the AP/U-T San Diego reports.

Wis. Gov. Walker Quietly Signs Bills Placing New Restrictions on Abortion Care, Insurance Coverage, Sex Education
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) on Thursday signed three separate bills restricting abortion care and insurance coverage of the procedure, as well as imposing new requirements for sex education, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports.

Wis. Medical Group Urges Gov. Walker To Veto Antiabortion Bill
The Wisconsin Medical Society on Tuesday sent a letter to Gov. Scott Walker (R) urging him to veto a bill (SB 306) that would add more requirements for doctors in screening women before abortion care, the AP/Oshkosh Northwestern reports.

Kan. Medical Center's Accreditation Remains Threatened by Antiabortion Provision
The Kansas House on Friday approved a budget amendment that could jeopardize the obstetrics and gynecology accreditation for the University of Kansas Medical Center's residency program, one day after a House committee amended an antiabortion-rights bill (HB 2598) to address that concern, the Huffington Post reports.

N.H. House Approves Waiting Period, Counseling Requirements Before Abortion Care
The New Hampshire House on Wednesday approved a bill (HB 1659) that would require a woman seeking abortion care to first wait 24 hours, during which time she would have to meet with a doctor to review information and materials about the procedure, the Huffington Post reports.

Fla. Senate Rejects Bill To Mandate Waiting Period, Restrictions on Abortion Providers
The Florida Senate on Monday blocked debate on a bill (SB 290) that would have mandated a 24-hour waiting period before abortion care and imposed new regulations on abortion providers, the Miami Herald reports (Sanders/Klas, Miami Herald, 3/5).

S.D. Senate Approves Bill To Modify Abortion Counseling, Waiting Period Law
The South Dakota Senate on Thursday voted 26-7 to pass a bill (HB 1254) that would alter a 2011 law that mandates a 72-hour waiting period and counseling at a crisis pregnancy center before abortion care, the AP/NECN reports.

Wis. Senate Passes Bill Tightening Voluntary Consent Requirements, Banning Telemedicine for Abortion Care
The Wisconsin Senate on Wednesday voted 17-15 to pass a bill that would place new restrictions on abortion care, the AP/Superior Telegram reports.

Mich. House Panel Advances Abortion Coercion Bill
The Michigan House Families, Children and Seniors Committee voted on Tuesday along party lines to advance legislation that would make it a crime to coerce a woman to have an abortion, the Kalamazoo Gazette reports.

S.D. Committee Proposes Changes to CPC Counseling Requirement
The South Dakota House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday voted 10-2 to approve a bill (HB 1254) that would alter a state law requiring women to obtain counseling at crisis pregnancy centers and wait 72 hours before receiving abortion care, the AP/Sioux Falls Argus Leader reports.

Kan. Legislature To Consider Sweeping Antiabortion Bill
Kansas lawmakers this week will consider a complex antiabortion-rights bill with provisions ranging from requiring that women receive warnings about the supposed risks of abortion care to changing medical malpractice and tax laws, the Huffington Post reports.

Ky. Pre-Abortion Ultrasound, Counseling Bills Advance to Full Senate
A Kentucky Senate Committee on Thursday approved two bills that would require ultrasounds and in-person counseling before abortion care, the Louisville Courier-Journal reports.

Federal Judge Allows Two Crisis Pregnancy Centers To Enter Case Against S.D. Abortion Law
U.S. District Chief Judge Karen Schreier has allowed two crisis pregnancy centers to intervene in a court case involving a South Dakota law that requires women seeking an abortion to wait 72 hours before the procedure, the Aberdeen News reports.

Groups Challenge Constitutionality of N.C. Abortion Law
A coalition of five groups -- the American Civil Liberties Union, ACLU of North Carolina Legal Foundation, Planned Parenthood Health Systems, Planned Parenthood of Central North Carolina and the Center for Reproductive Rights -- on Thursday filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging the constitutionality of a North Carolina law that requires abortion providers to comply with specific requirements before a woman can have an abortion, ABC11-WTVD reports.

Ariz. Appeals Court Rules That 2009 Abortion Restrictions Do Not Cause Undue Burden
The Arizona Court of Appeals on Thursday ruled that key parts of a 2009 state law restricting abortion services are constitutional and do not place an undue burden on women, the AP/San Diego Union-Tribune reports.

N.C. Senate Votes To Override Veto on Ultrasound Bill, Making Restrictions Law
The North Carolina Senate on Thursday voted 29-19 to override Gov. Beverly Perdue's (D) veto of a measure (HB 854) that would require women to obtain an ultrasound and undergo mandatory counseling at least 24 hours prior to receiving abortion care, effectively making the legislation law, AP/WRAL reports.

N.C. House Votes To Override Governor's Veto of Ultrasound Bill
The North Carolina House on Tuesday voted 72-47 to override Gov. Beverly Perdue's (D) veto of a bill (HB 854) that would require women to obtain an ultrasound and undergo mandatory counseling at least 24 hours prior to receiving abortion care, the AP/Raleigh News & Observer reports.

La. Gov. Signs Bill Requiring Abortion Clinic Signs, Website on Alternatives
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) on Wednesday signed a bill (HB 636) into law that requires the state to make information about abortion and pregnancy options available online and mandates that clinics post signs stating, among other things, that it is illegal to force a woman to have an abortion, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports.

Preliminary Injunction Sought Against Texas Ultrasound Law
The Center for Reproductive Rights on Thursday filed a motion for a preliminary injunction against a Texas law that requires a woman seeking abortion care to have an ultrasound and hear a detailed description of the fetus at least 24 hours before the abortion procedure, the Houston Chronicle reports.

S.D. 72-Hour Waiting Period Law Temporarily Blocked
U.S. District Chief Judge Karen Schreier on Thursday granted a preliminary injunction against a South Dakota law that would require women to obtain counseling at crisis pregnancy centers and wait 72 hours before receiving abortion care, the AP/Washington Post reports.

Planned Parenthood Takes Up Multiple Legal Challenges Nationwide
Planned Parenthood is fighting an "increasingly aggressive campaign" against legislation in several states that restricts abortion rights or cuts off funding to the organization, Politico reports.

Maine House Rejects Four Antiabortion-Rights Bills
The Maine House on Tuesday rejected four bills aiming to restrict abortion access, including measures related to waiting periods, pre-abortion counseling, parental consent and crimes against pregnant women, the AP/Boston Globe reports.

Maine House Panel Considers Three Abortion-Related Bills
The Maine House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday held hearings on three antiabortion-rights bills under consideration by the state's first Republican-led Legislature in decades, the AP/Washington Examiner reports.

Abortion: Mandatory Counseling | In the Courts

This section provides a brief overview of significant cases impacting reproductive rights and health related to Abortion: Mandatory Counseling.

Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota v. Rounds
Challenge to a 2005 South Dakota law that requires physicians to provide women with state-mandated statements including medically inaccurate information about the risk factors of abortion.

Comprehensive Health of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri Inc. v. Templeton
Federal court challenge to provisions of a Kansas law which requires abortion providers to post a link on their website to a government site that contains the government's viewpoint on abortion and to post scripted text endorsing the government's message.