Lawsuit Over Indiana Abortion Ultrasound Requirement Is Over

Aug 20, 2020

Hoosiers rally in 2016 over an anti-abortion measure signed into law by then-Gov. Mike Pence.
Credit Brandon Smith / IPB News

The court battle over an Indiana law that requires women to get an ultrasound at least 18 hours before an abortion is over.

Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky and the state agreed to end the lawsuit.

Planned Parenthood had argued the 2016 law meant women would have to make two, separate trips of sometimes hundreds of miles for the procedure or pay for overnight lodging. That, the health care provider said, caused an undue burden on women’s constitutional right to an abortion.

Two different courts agreed. But earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court sent the case back to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals for rehearing – causing some confusion among abortion rights advocates.

Now, Planned Parenthood agreed to walk away from the suit, provided Indiana will wait until January to enforce the law.

That’s because a Planned Parenthood clinic in Fort Wayne recently acquired an ultrasound machine, giving women more options to fulfill the requirement - and making the legal argument less strong.

Contact reporter Brandon at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.