NARAL Pro-Choice America

Shortcut Navigation:

Get Email Updates

* means required

Privacy Policy >>
   Please leave this field empty

Donate

Donate now to support NARAL Pro-Choice America

Anti-choice groups are attacking women’s rights everywhere. Your gift helps us fight back!

Donate Now

Rhode Island

Insurance Prohibition for Abortion

Does Rhode Island prohibit private insurance plans from covering abortion services? Yes.  Rhode Island has an unconstitutional and unenforceable law which provides that no health-insurance contract, plan, or policy delivered or issued for delivery in the state may include abortion coverage, with exceptions only to save a woman's life or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest. Abortion coverage may be obtained only through an optional rider for which an additional premium is paid. However, nothing in the act requires an insurer to offer such a rider.  R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 27-18-28 (Enacted 1983).  

A court has permanently enjoined §27-18-28 as unconstitutional. Nat'l Educ. Ass'n of R.I. v. Garrahy, 598 F. Supp. 1374 (D.R.I. 1984), aff'd, 779 F.2d 790 (1st Cir. 1986).

Does Rhode Island prohibit plans in its state exchange from covering abortion services?
No.  

Does Rhode Island prohibit insurance plans for public employees from covering abortion services?
Yes.  Rhode Island has a partially unconstitutional and unenforceable law which provides that the state, including its cities and towns, may not include abortion coverage in any employee health-insurance contract, plan, or policy, with exceptions only to save a woman's life or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest. R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 36-12-2.1 (Enacted 1981).

A court held that §36-12-2.1 is unconstitutional and unenforceable as applied to municipal employees. Nat'l Educ. Ass'n of R.I. v. Garrahy, 598 F. Supp. 1374 (D.R.I. 1984), aff'd, 779 F.2d 790 (1st Cir. 1986).

Does Rhode Island prohibit the purchase of extra coverage for abortion services?
No.  Nothing in the law prohibits the purchase of abortion coverage through an optional rider; in theory, women may purchase a separate policy and pay an extra premium to receive abortion coverage.  However, nothing in the law requires an insurer to make such riders available and there is little evidence that insurers offer these products.  R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 27-18-28 (Enacted 1983).


Bookmark and Share

©2014 NARAL Pro-Choice America and NARAL Pro-Choice America Foundation   Copyright Information