Florida Abortion Laws
Abortion is legal in Florida until the fetus reaches a gestational age of 6 weeks. Thereafter, abortion is legal only if necessary to save the mother’s life, the pregnancy is the result of rape, incest, or human trafficking and the gestational age of the fetus is not more than 15 weeks, or the pregnancy has not progressed to the third trimester and two physicians certify in writing that the fetus has a fatal fetal abnormality.
Florida's abortion laws are, generally speaking, more restrictive than those in many other states.
In 1989, the Florida Supreme Court declared that the right to privacy under the state constitution included a pre-viability right to abortion. In Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, the U.S. Supreme Court overruled Roe v. Wade, the case that had recognized a federal constitutional right to a post-viability abortion.
On April 14, 2023, Governor Ron DeSantis signed the Heartbeat Protection Act, which prohibits most abortions after the fetus reaches a gestational age of about six weeks. A legal challenge based on the 1989 Florida Supreme Court decision is expected.
This area of law is highly fluid.
|Code Section||390.0111, et seq.; 797.02; 797.03|
|Statutory Definition of Illegal Abortion||Termination of pregnancy after gestational age of 6 weeks which does not meet requirements of legal abortion. Partial Birth Abortion: Prohibited except when necessary to save the life of the mother when her life is physically endangered and no other medical procedure would suffice for that purpose|
|Statutory Definition of Legal Abortion||
Regulated after gestational age of 6 weeks:
|Penalty on Abortion Provider for Unlawful Abortion||Third-degree felony, imprisonment up to 5 yrs.; or 2nd-degree misdemeanor for performing legal abortion in unlawful place, up to 60 days imprisonment; Fines: 3rd-degree felony, up to $5,000; 2nd-degree misdemeanor, up to $500|
|Residency Requirements for Patients||-|
|Physician Licensing Requirements||Validly licensed hospital, or medical facility; after 15 weeks only in hospital|
Note: State laws are constantly changing -- contact a Florida health care attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Related Resources for Florida Abortion Laws:
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