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In Ohio

After Roe, abortion is illegal after the sixth week of pregnancy, when a baby’s heartbeat can be detected.  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.

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THE BIG QUESTION

After Roe, will my state ban nearly all abortions or allow nearly all abortions?

Ohio has a heartbeat law banning an abortion at 6 weeks, after a fetal heartbeat is detected. A federal court lifted an injunction on this law after Roe was overturned by the Supreme Court, and Governor Mike DeWine issued an executive order directing the Ohio Department of Health to adopt emergency rules implementing this law. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.193 (2021).

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WHAT’S NEXT

What is my state’s next step in the fight for life, once Roe is overturned?

After Roe, Ohio’s top priority must be to ensure that our duly passed Heartbeat Law that has been enjoined by the courts is allowed to go into effect.

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

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If my state won’t ban all abortions, what are the limits to abortion?

Ohio has a heartbeat law banning an abortion at 6 weeks, after a fetal heartbeat is detected. A federal court lifted an injunction on this law after Roe was overturned by the Supreme Court, and Governor Mike DeWine issued an executive order directing the Ohio Department of Health to adopt emergency rules implementing this law. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.193 (2021).

Abortion is prohibited either post-viability (Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.17(E) (2011)) or after twenty weeks (§ 2919.201(A) (2017)), whichever comes earlier.

Abortion is prohibited if the mother is seeking to abort due to a diagnosis of Down syndrome in the unborn child. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.10(B) (2018).

Ohio has a heartbeat law banning an abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detected. The law is currently enjoined while litigation is ongoing. This litigation would have to be resolved for the law to go into effect even after Roe is overturned. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.193 (2021).


Exceptions to any limitations

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Are there any exceptions to those limitations placed on abortion?

Yes: it is an exception to the heartbeat law “in order to prevent the death of the pregnant woman or to avoid a serious risk of the substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman that delay in the performance or inducement of the abortion would create.” Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.193 (2021)

Yes: It is an exception to the post-viability ban to prevent the death of the mother or substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.201(B)(1)(b) (2017).


Penalties for performing an illegal abortion

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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 heartbeat law are a felony of the fifth degree. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.193 (2021).

Abortion after viability is a fourth-degree felony. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.17(F) (2021).


Enforcement

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When abortion laws are violated, who can file a lawsuit to enforce their rights and the law?

Anyone can file a civil action for compensatory and exemplary damages, or the state medical board may bring a disciplinary action for enforcement. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.193 (2021).


Special standards of care

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Does my state impose a special medical standard of care on abortion providers?

No.


Protecting Fundamental Rights

Parents

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Does my state give parents the right to consent for their child to get an abortion?

Consent and notification are not required; however, this state has a method where a minor can obtain permission from the courts to receive an abortion without parental notice or consent. Ohio Rev. Code § 2151.85(A) (2013).


Medical professionals

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Does my state have conscience protections for medical professionals who do not want to participate in abortions?

Yes: A refusal to perform or participate in an abortion is not grounds for disciplinary or recriminatory actions. Ohio Rev. Code § 4731.91(D) (1974).


Babies Born Alive

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Are there legal protections for babies born alive following a botched abortion in my state?

Yes: The physician is required to preserve the life of the child. Ohio Rev. Code 2919.13(B) (1974).


Safety & Health of Women

Physician-only requirement

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Does an abortion have to be provided by a licensed physician in my state?

Yes: One must be a physician to conduct abortions in Ohio. Ohio Rev. Code § 2919.201(F), 2919.11, 4731.41, 2919.123 (2021).


Informed consent

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Does my state’s law require that a woman give informed consent and/or receive counseling prior to allowing an abortion to be performed?

Yes: The physician is required to inform the mother of risks, nature of abortion, and probable gestational age. Ohio Rev. Code § 2317.56(B)(1) (2021).

Consent must be given voluntarily and knowingly. Ohio Rev. Code § 2317.56(B)(4)(b) (2021).


Waiting period

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Does my state place any waiting requirement on abortion so that a mother has more time to decide?

Yes: A 24-hour waiting period is required. Ohio Rev. Code § 2317.56(B)(1) (2021).


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