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In Oklahoma

After Roe in Oklahoma, abortion is illegal after a fetal heartbeat may be detected. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-731.3. However, the Supreme Court of Oklahoma found a constitutional right to abortion, putting some of Oklahoma’s abortion bans at risk. Oklahoma Call for Reprod. Just. v. Drummond, 24, ¶ 16, 526 P.3d 1123 (Okla. 2023). Keep reading to find out more about your state’s post-Roe abortion laws.

THE BIG QUESTION

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

Oklahoma bans abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected now that Roe is overturned. In 2022, the state legislature passed laws prohibiting abortion in all circumstances except to save the life of the mother in a medical emergency that have gone into effect now that Roe is overturned. 2022 OK. ALS 11, 2022 OK. Laws 11, 2022 OK. Ch. 11, 2021 OK. SB 612, SB 1555. However, the Supreme Court of Oklahoma found that law unconstitutional. Oklahoma Call for Reprod. Just. v. Drummond, 24, ¶ 16, 526 P.3d 1123 (Okla. 2023). Now, abortion is illegal after a fetal heartbeat can be detected. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-731.3.

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WHAT’S NEXT

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

Oklahoma is in good shape after Roe is overturned. Oklahoma’s top priority after Roe is to establish a medical standard requiring doctors to perform abortions necessary to save a mother’s life in such a way that gives the unborn child the best chance of surviving the procedure. No such standard currently exists in Oklahoma law. Our priority is also to fight to overturn the Oklahoma Supreme Court case that found a constitutional right to abortion.

MORE ABOUT YOUR STATE’S ABORTION LAWS

Below, we’ve summarized what abortion laws are 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?

Because Oklahoma has a law banning abortions after a detectable heartbeat, Oklahoma’s other, lesser limitations and regulations are not as necessary. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-731.3.

Oklahoma also has a viability abortion ban. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-732 20 week abortion ban. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-745.5.

 

Exceptions to any limitations

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Are there any exceptions to those limitations placed on abortion?

The heartbeat ban has an exception to save the mother’s life or to avert serious risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of the mother’s major bodily function. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-731.3.

The viability ban and the 20 week ban have exceptions for when abortion is necessary to save the mother’s life or to prevent impairment to her health. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-732; Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-745.5.

 

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 abortion bans are a felony. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-729.2.

 

Enforcement

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

The mother, father, or the paternal grandparents (if the mother is a minor) may maintain an action against the person who performed or induced an abortion in knowing or reckless violation of the abortion bans. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-729.3.

 

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?

Written informed consent from one parent or judicial authorization are 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. This provision is mostly unnecessary in light of the heartbeat ban. 63 Okl. St. § 1-740.3; 63 Okl. St. § 1-740.2.

 

Medical professionals

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

Hospitals and individuals are not required to perform abortions in violation of their conscience. O.S. § 1-741.

 

Babies Born Alive

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

Children who survive abortions are due the same as the rights as an infant of similar medical status prematurely born. 59 Okl. St. § 524.

 

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?

OOne must be a physician licensed to practice in the state in order to perform abortions. Violators are guilty of a felony punishable by 1-3 years imprisonment. Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 63, § 1-731.

 

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. Counseling on pregnancy and abortion is required; however, this provision is largely obsolete in light of the heartbeat ban. 63 Okl. St. § 1-738.2.

 

Waiting period

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

Oklahoma requires a 72-hour waiting period for abortions; however, this provision is largely obsolete in light of the heartbeat ban. 63 Okl. St. § 1-738.2.

 

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MAKING A MORE PROLIFE OKLAHOMA

Your state does not (yet!) have a state family policy council working on the issue of life at your state’s capitol. But the need to fight for life in your state is critical!

If you’re interested in helping start a state family policy council in Oklahoma, please contact us at: Mail@familypolicyalliance.com.

And, be sure to check out the good prolife work being done by our national allies as well and find a way to plug into the #AfterRoe movement!

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