Abortion Laws in GA

What You Need to Know About Abortion Laws in GA

Abortion Laws in GA

What You Need to Know About Abortion Laws in GA

Abortion Laws in GA

What changes are in effect due to the national overturning of Roe v Wade?

On April 24, 2022 the U.S. Supreme Court officially reversed the 1973 ruling of Roe v. Wade, declaring that there is no constitutional right to abortion. The implementation of this ruling is now under the jurisdiction of each state.


What is Georgia’s House Bill 481, Living Infants and Fairness Equality (LIFE) Act? 

With some exceptions, the LIFE Act, also known as the Heartbeat Bill, states it is now illegal to administer an abortion after the point that cardiac activity can be detected. This can be as early as 6 weeks after conception. A diagnostic ultrasound is required to prove the lack of cardiac activity.

The exceptions are:

  1. Rape and incest – up to 20 weeks of pregnancy
  2. Threat to the life of the mother or potential permanent damage to a vital organ
  • Provides tax exemptions for pre-born babies
  • Mandates child support payments for pre-born babies
  • Recognizes personhood at the time of fertilization
  • Protects women from prosecution and excludes miscarriages
  • Life saving care in tragic scenarios like ectopic pregnancy are legally protected



The Georgia Legislature passed the Living Infants Fairness and Equality (LIFE) Act in 2019 and Governor Brian Kemp signed it into law on May 17, 2019. The law provides that no abortion shall be performed if the unborn child has a detectable human heartbeat except (a) in the event of a medical emergency or medically futile pregnancy; or

(b) in cases involving rape or incest in which an official police report has been filed and where the probable gestational age of the unborn child is 20 weeks or less. The law does not prohibit the removal of a dead unborn child caused by a spontaneous abortion or the removal of an ectopic pregnancy. In 2005, the Georgia Legislature passed the Woman’s Right to Know Act. You can see the law at dph.georgia.gov/womens-right-know-wrtk.

The Woman’s Right to Know Act provides that an abortion can only be performed in Georgia after “voluntary and informed consent of the female” at least 24 hours before the abortion except in a medical emergency. It spells out what information doctors will provide and requires DPH to publish materials with additional details.



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