Connecticut Abortion Laws
By FindLaw Staff | Legally reviewed by Nicole Prebeck, Esq. | Last reviewed December 22, 2022
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Abortion is legal in Connecticut through viability. Thereafter, abortion is legal only if necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother.
Connecticut does not have any of the major types of abortion restrictions—such as waiting periods, mandated parental involvement or limitations on publicly funded abortions—often found in other states.
Connecticut abortion laws are, generally speaking, among the least restrictive in the nation. Other jurisdictions often require consent requirements and other statutory obstacles. Those types of roadblocks don't exist in Connecticut.
In Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed Roe v. Wade, the case in which it had recognized a federal constitutional right to post-viability abortions. Because Connecticut codified Roe v. Wade as a matter of state law, the Dobbs decision had no impact on Connecticut's abortion laws.
History of Connecticut Abortion Law
Connecticut had a hand in one of America's first abortion laws. The earliest anti-abortion laws were intended to protect women from untrained abortionists. Records indicate abortions occurred unregulated during the 1800s, and the number of deaths caused by complications from illegal and unsafe abortions is impossible to determine.
In 1821, America's first statutory abortion regulation was enacted in Connecticut in order to protect women from abortion inducement through poison administered after the fourth month of pregnancy.
Beginning in the mid-twentieth century, abortion history took a turn. Women's groups, along with doctors and lawyers, organized a movement to reform abortion laws. Reformers cited inequalities between men and women that were exacerbated by women's inability to adequately control their reproductive lives.
In the 1960s, women's rights organizations, including the National Organization for Women (NOW), lobbied for abortion law reform and filed lawsuits when lobbying efforts failed. States responded, reforming their laws about abortion, but women's rights groups continued to fight for unfettered access to abortion services for women. Anti-abortion groups fought back, arguing that a woman's right to reproductive freedom is no greater than the right of an unborn child to be born.
Connecticut Abortion Law at a Glance
The table below lists the basic provisions of Connecticut abortion laws. See Abortion Laws and Abortion Rights FAQs to learn more.
|Code Section||19a-600, et seq.|
|Statutory Definition of Illegal Abortion||-|
|Statutory Definition of Legal Abortion||
Pregnant woman's decision to terminate pregnancy before viability.
After viability, only to preserve life or health of pregnant woman
|Penalty for Unlawful Abortion||-|
|Consent Requirements||Minors (persons less than 16 years) must be provided with information and counseling and then sign and date standard form (unless medical emergency)|
|Residency Requirements for Patients||-|
|Physician Licensing Requirements||-|
Note: State laws are constantly changing -- contact a Connecticut attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Research the Law:
- Official State Codes - Links to the official online statutes (laws) in all 50 states and DC.
Related Resources for Abortion Laws:
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