Articles Posted in Health Care Law

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In 2009 plaintiffs challenged, under the Illinois Constitution, the Parental Notice of Abortion Act of 1995, which prevents a minor from obtaining an abortion unless a parent or guardian is first given notice of the minor’s intention or the minor obtains judicial waiver of the requirement. The Act has never been enforced. Months earlier, the Seventh Circuit had held the Act facially valid under the U.S. Constitution. The trial court dismissed the challenge. The appellate court reversed. The Illinois Supreme Court reinstated the dismissal, noting the heavy burden in asserting facial invalidity. In Illinois, the right to an abortion derives from substantive due process principles, not from the constitutional privacy provision. State due process protections should be interpreted the same way as the federal due process clause, absent a reason for doing otherwise. The U.S. Supreme Court has found parental notification statutes constitutional under federal substantive due process and equal protection law. Although the state constitution includes a privacy provision not found in the U.S. Constitution, “reasonableness is the touchstone” of that clause,” and the Act is reasonable, having been narrowly crafted to promote minors’ best interests. The Illinois Constitution also contains a clause stating that “equal protection of the laws shall not be denied or abridged on account of sex,” but the Act does not create a sex-based classification.View "Hope Clinic for Women, Ltd. v. Flores" on Justia Law