New Hampshire law provides virtually no meaningful legal protections for women considering abortions, lacking an informed consent law, abortion clinic regulations, and late-term abortion limitations. It is one of only three states that does not protect the conscience rights of healthcare providers. However, state legislators and pro-life groups continue their attempts to address these deficiencies.
- New Hampshire prohibits partial-birth abortion.
- New Hampshire law allows abortions after viability, even in cases where the mother’s life or health is not endangered.
- A physician may not perform an abortion on an unemancipated minor under the age of 18 until at least 48 hours after written notice has been delivered to one parent, except when there is a medical emergency or when the minor obtains a court order.
- The state Department of Health is required to collect, compile, and maintain abortion statistics and to prepare and submit an annual report to the general court.
- New Hampshire follows the federal standard for Medicaid funding for abortions, only permitting the use of federal or state matching Medicaid funds for abortions necessary to preserve the life of the woman or when the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.
Legal Recognition and Protection of Unborn and Newly Born:
- New Hampshire does not criminalize the killing of an unborn child outside the context of abortion. However, it does provide that an attack on a pregnant woman which results in a stillbirth or miscarriage is a criminal assault.
- The state allows a wrongful death (civil) action when a viable unborn child is killed through a negligent or criminal act.
- New Hampshire has a “Baby Moses” law, establishing a safe haven for mothers to legally leave their infants at designated places and ensuring the infants receive appropriate care and protection.
- New Hampshire has approved stillbirth certificates.
- New Hampshire does not ban human cloning, destructive embryo research, or fetal experimentation.
- The state does not promote ethical forms of research.
- New Hampshire has enacted regulations applicable to practitioners and participants in assisted reproductive technologies.
End of Life Laws:
- In New Hampshire, assisting suicide is a felony.
Healthcare Freedom of Conscience Laws:
Participation in Abortion and Contraception:
- New Hampshire currently provides no protection for the rights of conscience of health-care providers.
- New Hampshire law requires group or blanket health insurance policies issued or renewed by insurers, health service corporations, and health maintenance organizations to provide coverage for contraceptives if they otherwise provide coverage for outpatient services or other prescription drugs. The law contains no conscience exemptions for religious or other employers with ethical or moral objections to these drugs.
Participation in Research Harmful to Human Life:
- New Hampshire currently provides no protection for the rights of healthcare providers who conscientiously object to participation in human cloning, destructive embryo research, and other forms of immoral medical research.
What Happened in 2013:
- New Hampshire considered legislation prohibiting certain abortion and requiring informed consent.
- New Hampshire enacted a measure clarifying that, for purposes of an advanced directive, life-sustaining treatment includes medically administered nutrition and hydration.
- The governor vetoed a measure that sought to establish a committee to study end of life decisions.
Recommendations for new Hampshire
Women’s Protection Project Priorities:
- Women’s Health Defense Act (5-month abortion limitation)
- Women’s Right to Know Act with reflection period
- Abortion Patients’ Enhanced Safety Act
- Abortion-Inducing Drugs Safety Act
- Parental Consent for Abortion Act
- Parental Involvement Enhancement Act
- Child Protection Act
- Abortion Mandate Opt-Out Act
- Defunding the Abortion Industry and Advancing Women’s Health Act
- Women’s Ultrasound Right to Know Act
- Coercive Abuse Against Mothers Prevention Act
- Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act
- Joint Resolution Commending Pregnancy Resource Centers
Legal Recognition and Protection for the Unborn:
- Crimes Against the Unborn Child Act
- Unborn Wrongful Death Act (for a pre-viable child)
- Born-Alive Infant Protection Act
- Pregnant Woman’s Protection Act
- Human Cloning Prohibition Act
- Destructive Embryo Research Act
- Prohibition on Public Funding of Human Cloning and Destructive Embryo Research Act
Healthcare Freedom of Conscience:
- Healthcare Freedom of Conscience Act