After Roe, abortion will be sometimes legal. Connect with your local family policy council to stay up-to-date on the pro-life movement in your state—now and after Roe. Then, keep reading to find out more about what abortion law would be in your state after Roe.Connect with Montana Family Foundation
THE BIG QUESTION
After Roe, will my state ban nearly all abortions or allow nearly all abortions?
Montana will still allow most abortions after Roe is overturned.
What is my state’s next step in the fight for life, once Roe is overturned?
Montana has a specific “right to privacy” embedded in our state Constitution. Therefore, all of the jurisprudence developed since Roe was decided still stands in Montana even if Roe itself is overturned. We must either amend our state Constitution to say that the privacy clause does not apply to abortion, or overturn the 1999 Montana Supreme Court’s decision in Armstrong v. State. Armstrong is Montana’s version of Roe v. Wade.
MORE ABOUT YOUR STATE’S ABORTION LAWS
Below, we’ve summarized what abortion laws would be in your state after Roe.
Abortion Limits, Exceptions and Enforcement
Limitations on abortions
If my state won’t ban all abortions, what are the limits to abortion?
Abortions are banned after the point where the fetus is considered viable. Mont. Code Ann. § 50-20-109 (Enacted 1974; Last Amended 2005).
Montana passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act in 2022, protecting children after 20 weeks of pregnancy. 2021 Mt. ALS 307, 2021 Mt. Laws 307, 2021 Mt. Ch. 307, 2021 Mt. HB 136. It also passed the Abortion-Inducing Drug Risk Protocol Act, placing significant restrictions on chemical abortions. 2021 Mt. ALS 309 , 2021 Mt. Laws 309 , 2021 Mt. Ch. 309 , 2021 Mt. HB 171. Unfortunately, both of these laws are currently enjoined by Montana courts on state law grounds, therefore they would not immediately go into effect when Roe v. Wade is overturned.
Exceptions to any limitations
Are there any exceptions to those limitations placed on abortion?
Yes, to preserve the life and health of the mother, defined as “the prevention of a risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function.” Three licensed physicians must certify in writing that the abortion is necessary. Mont. Code Ann. § 50-20-109 (Enacted 1974; Last Amended 2005).
Penalties for performing an illegal abortion
What are the penalties to abortion providers for committing an illegal abortion (one of the forms of abortion that my state has limited under the law)?
Violations of the viability ban are a felony. Mont. Code Ann. § 50-20-109 (Enacted 1974; Last Amended 2005).
When abortion laws are violated, who can file a lawsuit to enforce their rights and the law?
Special standards of care
Does my state impose a special medical standard of care on abortion providers?
Yes: The physician may not intentionally or negligently endanger the unborn baby; he/she may only intentionally endanger the fetus when necessary to preserve the life and health of the mother. Mont. Code Ann. § 50-20-109 (Enacted 1974; Last Amended 2005).
Protecting Fundamental Rights
Does my state give parents the right to consent for their child to get an abortion?
Yes. Parental consent from one parent is required for minors; however, this state has a method where a minor can obtain permission from the courts to receive an abortion without parental notice or consent. Mont. Code Ann. § 50-20-501 to -511 (Enacted 2012; Last Amended 2013).
Does my state have conscience protections for medical professionals who do not want to participate in abortions?
Yes. Individuals, partnerships, associations, or corporations may refuse to participate in abortion services or provide counseling concerning abortion because of religious beliefs or moral convictions. Mont. Code Ann. § 50-20-111 (Enacted 1974).
Babies Born Alive
Are there legal protections for babies born alive following a botched abortion in my state?
Safety & Health of Women
Does an abortion have to be provided by a licensed physician in my state?
Does my state’s law require that a woman give informed consent and/or receive counseling prior to allowing an abortion to be performed?
Does my state place any waiting requirement on abortion so that a mother has more time to decide?