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February 10, 2023

15-Week Abortion Ban Fails to Pass in Virginia

Following the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization last summer, the Virginia legislature has considered several bills regarding abortion.  One bill, which would have banned abortion after 15-weeks unless the pregnancy was the result of rape or incest or would “result in the death of the woman or substantially and irreversibly impair one or more of such woman's major bodily functions, not including psychological or emotional conditions,” was supported by Governor Glenn Youngkin.  The bill was rejected by a state Senate panel on January 26, 2023.  

The Senate panel also rejected two other bills, one of which would ban abortion during the second trimester of pregnancy and prior to viability, which the bill defined as a gestational age of 24 weeks or more or, in the estimation of the physician and two consulting physicians, at least 22 weeks (Senate Bill 1483); and one which would ban all abortion except in cases where the mother’s life is at risk or at 20 weeks or less if pregnancy is the result of rape or incest and an official police report has been filed reporting the offense (Senate Bill 1284).  Thus, Virginia’s abortion laws currently remain unchanged.

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