WYOMING.  Wyoming Statutes. 

 

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Title 35
Public Health and Safety

 

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CHAPTER 6

ABORTIONS

 

35‑6‑101.  Definitions.

 

(a)  As used in the act, unless the context otherwise requires:

 

(i)  "Abortion" means an act, procedure, device or prescription administered to or prescribed for a pregnant woman by any person with knowledge of the pregnancy, including the pregnant woman herself, with the intent of producing the premature expulsion, removal or termination of a human embryo or fetus, except that in cases in which the viability of the embryo or fetus is threatened by continuation of the pregnancy, early delivery after viability by commonly accepted obstetrical practices shall not be construed as an abortion;

 

(ii)  "Accepted medical procedures" means procedures of the type and performed in a manner and in a facility which is equipped with surgical, anaesthetic, resuscitation and laboratory equipment sufficient to meet the standards of medical care which physicians engaged in the same or similar lines of work in the community would ordinarily exercise and devote to the benefit of their patients;

 

(iii)  "Conception" means the fecundation of the ovum by the spermatozoa;

 

(iv)  "Hospital" means those institutions licensed by the state department of health as hospitals;

 

(v)  "Physician" means any person licensed to practice medicine in this state;

 

(vi)  "Pregnant" means that condition of a woman who has a human embryo or fetus within her as the result of conception;

 

(vii)  "Viability" means that stage of human development when the embryo or fetus is able to live by natural or life‑supportive systems outside the womb of the mother according to appropriate medical judgment;

 

(viii)  "Woman" means any female person;

 

(ix)  The singular where used herein includes the plural, the plural includes the singular, and the masculine includes the feminine or neuter, when consistent with the intent of this act and when necessary to effect its purpose;

 

(x)  "Minor" means a pregnant woman under the age of eighteen (18), but does not include any woman who:

 

(A)  Is legally married;

 

(B)  Is in active military service; or

 

(C)  Has lived apart from her parents or guardian, has been financially independent and has managed her own affairs for at least six (6) months prior to a proposed abortion.

 

(xi)  "Parents" means both parents of a minor if they are both living, or one (1) parent of the minor if only one (1) is living or if the second parent cannot be located through a reasonably diligent effort;

 

(xii)  "This act" means W.S. 35‑6‑101 through 35‑6‑118.

 

35‑6‑102.  No abortion after viability; exception.

 

An abortion shall not be performed after the embryo or fetus has reached viability except when necessary to preserve the woman from an imminent peril that substantially endangers her life or health, according to appropriate medical judgment.

 

35‑6‑103.  Viability not affected by abortion.

 

A physician who performs an abortion procedure employed pursuant to W.S. 35‑6‑102 shall not intentionally terminate the viability of the unborn infant prior to, during or following the procedure.

 

35‑6‑104.  Means of treatment for viable abortion.

 

The commonly accepted means of care shall be employed in the treatment of any viable infant aborted alive with any chance of survival.

 

35‑6‑105.  Private institutions not required to perform abortions; no liability for refusal to perform abortion.

 

No private hospital, clinic, institution or other private facility in this state is required to admit any patient for the purpose of performing an abortion nor to allow the performance of an abortion therein. The private hospital, clinic, institution or any other private facility shall inform any prospective patient seeking an abortion of its policy not to participate in abortion procedures. No cause of action shall arise against any private hospital, clinic, institution or any other private facility for refusing to perform or allow an abortion.

 

35‑6‑106.  Persons not required to perform abortion; no civil liability for refusal; sanctions or discrimination for refusal forbidden.

 

No person shall, in any way, be required to perform or participate in any abortion or in any act or thing which accomplishes or performs or assists in accomplishing or performing a human miscarriage, euthanasia or any other death of a human fetus or human embryo. The refusal of any person to do so is not a basis for civil liability to any person. No hospital, governing board or any other person, firm, association or group shall terminate the employment of, alter the position of, prevent or impair the practice or occupation of, or impose any other sanction or otherwise discriminate against any person who refuses to perform or participate in any abortion or in any act or thing which accomplishes, performs or assists in accomplishing or performing a human miscarriage, euthanasia or any other death of a human fetus or embryo.

 

35‑6‑107.  Forms for reporting abortions.

 

(a)  The state office of vital records services shall establish an abortion reporting form which shall be used after May 27, 1977 for the reporting of every abortion performed or prescribed in this state. The form shall include the following items in addition to such other information as may be necessary to complete the form, but in no case shall information be required that would tend to disclose the identity of any individual participating in an abortion:

 

(i)  The age of the pregnant woman;

 

(ii)  The type of procedure performed or prescribed;

 

(iii)  Complications, if any;

 

(iv)  A summary of the pregnant woman's obstetrical history regarding previous pregnancies, abortions and live births;

 

(v)  The length and weight of the aborted fetus or embryo, when measurable;

 

(vi)  Type of facility where the abortion is performed (i.e., hospital, clinic, physician's office, or other).

 

(b)  The form shall be completed by the attending physician and sent to the state health officer as defined in W.S. 9‑2‑103(e) within twenty (20) days after the abortion is performed.

 

35‑6‑108.  Compilations of abortions; matter of record; exception.

 

The state office of vital records services shall prepare and after May 27, 1977 keep on file for seven (7) years compilations of the information submitted on the abortion reporting forms. The compilations shall be available only to a local, state or national public health official or a physician upon his written request. The state health officer, in order to maintain and keep such compilations current, shall file with the reports any new or amended information. The information submitted under W.S. 35‑6‑107 and compiled under this section shall not be stored in any computer.

 

35‑6‑109.  Rules and regulations for disposal of bodies and parts thereof.

 

The state department of health may prescribe rules and regulations for the disposal of the bodies, tissues, organs and parts thereof of an unborn child, human fetus or human embryo which has been aborted.

 

35‑6‑110.  Penalty for violation of W.S. 35‑6‑102, 35‑6‑103 or 35‑6‑104.

 

Any physician or other person who violates any provision of W.S. 35‑6‑102, 35‑6‑103 or 35‑6‑104 is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment in the penitentiary for not more than fourteen (14) years.

 

35‑6‑111.  Penalty for person other than physician to perform abortion.

 

Any person other than a licensed physician who performs an abortion is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment in the penitentiary for not less than one (1) year nor more than fourteen (14) years.

 

35‑6‑112.  Penalty to use means other than commonly accepted medical procedures.

 

Any person who performs or prescribes an abortion by using anything other than accepted medical procedures is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment in the penitentiary for not more than fourteen (14) years.

 

35‑6‑113.  Penalty for violating W.S. 35‑6‑106.

 

Any person, firm, corporation, group or association who violates W.S. 35‑6‑106 is guilty of an offense punishable by a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00).

 

35‑6‑114.  Right to damages for discriminatory employment practices for refusal to perform abortion.

 

Any person or persons injured by any action prohibited in W.S. 35‑6‑106 may by civil action obtain injunctive relief or damages.

 

35‑6‑115.  Penalty for giving away a live or viable aborted child for experimentation.

 

Whoever sells, transfers, distributes or gives away any live or viable aborted child for any form of experimentation is guilty of a felony punishable by a fine of not less than ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00) and by imprisonment in the penitentiary for not less than one (1) year nor more than fourteen (14) years. Any person consenting, aiding or abetting such sale, transfer, distribution or other unlawful disposition of an aborted child is guilty of a felony punishable by a fine of not less than ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00) and by imprisonment in the penitentiary for not less than one (1) year nor more than fourteen (14) years or both, and shall also be subject to prosecution for violation of any other criminal statute.

 

35‑6‑116.  Advertising drug or nostrum for procuring abortion or miscarriage.

 

Whoever prints or publishes any advertisement of any drug or nostrum with intent to obtain utilization of such drug or nostrum for procuring abortion or miscarriage; or sells or gives away, or keeps for sale or gratuitous distribution, any newspaper, circular, pamphlet, or book containing such advertisement, or any account or description, of such drug or nostrum with intent to obtain utilization of such drugs or nostrum to procure abortion or miscarriage, shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars ($100.00), to which may be added imprisonment in the county jail for not more than six (6) months.

 

35‑6‑117.  Use of appropriated funds for abortion prohibited; exceptions.

 

No funds appropriated by the legislature of the state of Wyoming shall be used to pay for abortions except when the pregnancy is the result of incest as defined by W.S. 6‑4‑402 or sexual assault as defined by W.S. 6‑2‑301 if the assault is reported to a law enforcement agency within five (5) days after the assault or within five (5) days after the time the victim is capable of reporting the assault, or when the life of the mother would be endangered if the unborn child was carried to full term.

 

35‑6‑118.  Procedure governing abortion performed upon minor.

 

(a)  An abortion shall not be performed upon a minor unless at least one (1) of  the minor's parents or her guardian are notified in writing at least forty‑eight (48) hours before the abortion, and the attending physician has obtained the written consent of the minor and at least one (1) parent or guardian of the minor, unless:

 

(i)  The minor, in a closed hearing,  is granted the right to self‑consent to an abortion by court order pursuant to subparagraph (b)(v)(B)  of this section and the attending physician receives a certified copy of the court order and the written consent of the minor; or

 

(ii)  The abortion is authorized by court order pursuant to subparagraph (b)(v)(C) of this section and the attending physician receives a certified copy of the court order.

 

(b)  A juvenile court of jurisdiction may grant the right of a minor to self‑consent to an abortion or may authorize an abortion upon a minor in accordance with the following procedure:

 

(i)  The minor shall apply to the juvenile court for assistance either in person or through an adult of the minor's choice.  The court shall assist the minor in preparing the petition and notices required under this subsection;

 

(ii)  Notwithstanding W.S. 14‑6‑212, the minor or an adult of the minor's choice shall file a petition with the court, signed by the minor and setting forth:

 

(A)  The initials of the minor and the minor's date of birth;

 

(B)  The names and addresses, if known, of the minor's parents, guardian, custodian or, if the minor's parents are deceased and a guardian or custodian has not been appointed, any other person standing in loco parentis of the minor;

 

(C)  That the minor has been informed by her treating physician of the risks and consequences of an abortion;

 

(D)  That the minor is mature and wishes to have an abortion; and

 

(E)  Facts indicating why an abortion is in the best interest of the minor.

 

(iii)  The court may appoint a guardian ad litem of the minor and may appoint legal counsel for the minor;

 

(iv)  Within five (5) days after the petition is filed under paragraph (ii) of this subsection, a hearing on the merits of the petition shall be held on the record.  Any appointed counsel shall be appointed and notified by the court at least forty‑eight (48) hours before the time set for hearing.  At the hearing, the court shall hear evidence relating to:

 

(A)  The maturity and understanding of the minor;

 

(B)  The nature of the abortion, risks and consequences of the abortion, and alternatives to the abortion; and

 

(C)  Whether an abortion is in the best interest of the minor.

 

(v)  In its order, which shall be issued within twenty‑four (24) hours of the hearing, the court shall enter findings of fact and conclusions of law, order the record of the hearing sealed and shall:

 

(A)  Deny the petition, setting forth the grounds on which the petition is denied;

 

(B)  Grant the minor the right to self‑consent to the abortion based upon a finding by clear and convincing evidence that the minor is sufficiently mature and adequately informed to make her own decision, in consultation with her physician, independently of the wishes of her parents or guardian; or

 

(C)  Authorize the abortion based upon a finding by clear and convincing evidence that the abortion is in the best interest of the minor.

 

(vi)  Any order entered pursuant to paragraph (v) of this subsection may be appealed by a party to the supreme court in accordance with the Wyoming Rules of Appellate Procedure.  Notwithstanding W.S. 14‑6‑233, the supreme court shall by rule provide for expedited appellate review of appeals under this paragraph.

 

(c)  The provisions of this section shall not apply in an emergency medical situation when, to a reasonable degree of medical probability, the attending physician determines that an abortion is necessary to preserve the minor from an imminent peril that substantially endangers her life, and so certifies in the minor's medical record.

 

(d)  The written notifications required under this section shall be delivered:

 

(i)  Personally by the minor, attending physician or an agent; or

 

(ii)  By certified mail addressed to the parent at the usual place of abode of the parent with return receipt requested and restricted delivery to the addressee.

 

(e)  No parent, guardian or spouse shall require a minor to submit to an abortion against her wishes.

 

(f)  Any physician or other person who knowingly performs an abortion on a minor in violation of W.S. 35‑6‑118 is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000.00), imprisonment for not more than one (1) year, or both.

 

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