Active State Laws

1989: Abortion Facility Reporting and Licensing Act established safety standards, reporting requirements, and inspection schedules for abortion clinics.

1999: Parental Notification Law required parents be notified of their minor daughter’s intent to seek and undergo an abortion.  

1999: Third Trimester Abortion Ban enacted, prohibiting most third trimester elective abortions.

2003: A Woman’s Right to Know Act established an informed consent law and required that relevant information be offered to women seeking abortion 24 hours before an abortion could take place.  

2003: Prenatal Protection Act made Texas law recognize unborn children as victims of state crimes from fertilization. 

2005: Established the state-funded Alternatives to Abortion program.

2005: Placed physicians who committed elective third trimester abortions in danger of losing their medical licenses.

2005: Added parental consent to the existing Parental Notification Law. 

2011: Texas Sonogram Bill required abortionists to show a woman seeking an abortion her ultrasound image before the procedure.

2011: Removed $64.2 million of taxpayer funding from the abortion industry.

2011: Restructured Family Planning Programs to prohibit the abortion industry from receiving family planning funding from the state budget.

2013: Passage of House Bill 2:

  • Preborn Pain Act. Established a state interest in preborn children who can feel pain.  Prohibited elective abortions on preborn children at 20 weeks post-fertilization. 
  • Required abortionists to have admitting privileges at a local hospital (struck down by SCOTUS).
  • Raised medical standards of abortion clinics to the level of ambulatory surgical centers (struck down by SCOTUS).
  • Regulated the administration of chemical abortion drugs. 

2015: House Bill 3994 reformed the judicial bypass process where pregnant minors may circumvent the parental consent and notification provisions in state law:

  • Removed the automatic granting of these bypasses & required judges to rule. 
  • Stopped the abortion industry’s ability to venue shop, picking a friendly judge with a greater likelihood of granting the bypass.
  • Made process focus on domestic abuse and neglect of minors as the reason for the bypass, eliminating some of the reasons previously used to grant bypasses.

2015: Passage of House Bill 3074 with some patient protections:

      Worked to treat Artificially Administered Nutrition & Hydration (AANH) uniquely.

      Ensured that in most cases AANH cannot be removed from patients against their wishes or the wishes of their surrogates.

2017: Passage of Senate Bill 8:

  • Dismemberment Abortion Ban. This barbaric and inhumane abortion method was commonly used in the second trimester and ended the lives of preborn children by removing their limbs while their hearts are still beating. (Currently in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit)
  • State ban on partial-birth abortions.  While these abortions are banned federally, now the state of Texas may enforce the Pro-Life prohibition.
  • Required burial or cremation for the victims of abortion.
  • Banned the sale, donation, or trafficking of the bodies of victims of elective abortion.
  • Held abortionists criminally responsible to report abortions to the Department of State Health Services.  Also required monthly and electronic abortion reporting.

2017: Blocked state funding of abortion providers and their affiliates through a Pro-Life rider to the state budget. A measure to codify and enforce these budget provisions failed during the Special Session.

2017: Increased funding to the state’s program for Alternatives to Abortion to $38.3 million.

2017: Pro-Life Health Insurance Reform prohibited the coverage of elective abortions through public, private, and state employee default basic health plans.

2017: Patient Consent for Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) Orders required patient or surrogate consent before most DNR orders are placed in patients’ medical records and empowered patients and surrogates to revoke unwanted DNR orders.

2017: Reformed abortion reporting requirements:

  • Codified department rules requiring the reporting of abortion complications to the Health and Human Services Commission and provided civil penalties and possible loss of license for abortionists and physicians who violate the law.
  • Required abortionists to report whether and how the clinics are following the law when minors seek abortions with or without parental consent (and when judicial bypasses of parental consent are sought).
  • Required abortionists who abort children in the third trimester because of a disability to identify the disability to the Health and Human Services Commission.