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State Laws

Illinois


Political Information

Executive (Governor)

Pro-choice

Senate

Pro-choice

House

Pro-choice

Abortion-Care Policies

Abortion Providers

Abortion Providers: Expanded Access to Non-Surgical Abortion

The Illinois attorney general has issued an opinion concluding that physician assistants and advanced practice nurses may, in accordance with the statutory requirements and conditions governing their practices, provide mifepristone under the supervision of a qualified physician.  Ill. Op. Att’y Gen. No. 09-002 (March 5, 2009).  IL ST CH 225 § 65/65-35 (Enacted 1998, Amended 2019).


Abortion Providers: Expanded Access to Surgical Abortion

The Illinois Reproductive Health Act of 2019 repealed restrictions on advanced practice registered nurses and physician assistants’ scope of practice under previous abortion regulations. IL ST CH 225 § 65/65-35 (Enacted 1998, Amended 2019).


Abortion Rights

Post-Viability Ban

Illinois’ post-viability restriction states that no abortion may be provided after viability unless in the health care professional’s judgment the abortion is necessary to protect the life or health of the patient. IL ST CH 775 § 551-25 (enacted 2019).

NARAL Pro-Choice America supports the legal framework established in Roe v. Wade. Regarding the right to abortion in the third trimester, Roe allows for restrictions on post-viability abortion so long as they contain adequate exceptions to protect the woman’s life and health. However, many states have bans with inadequate exceptions, no exceptions at all, or define viability as occurring at a particular point in pregnancy. A state may not prohibit abortion prior to viability, which is that point at which a fetus is capable of "meaningful life" outside a woman’s body. Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 163 (1973). Because viability is a point that varies with each pregnancy, states may not declare that it occurs at a particular gestational age. NARAL Pro-Choice America does not oppose restrictions on post-viability abortions, such as Illinois’, that contain adequate exceptions to protect the woman’s life and health.


Protections: Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA)

Illinois has created additional protections for reproductive rights by adding an affirmative right to reproductive freedom into its state law.  This law ensures women’s access to pre-viability abortion services and would remain in effect even if Roe v. Wade were overturned.

Additionally, Illinois law forbids the state from discriminating against someone for exercising their reproductive rights, bars prosecution or punishment of a pregnant person for their actions or failure to act while pregnant, and repealed previous restrictions on abortion including TRAP laws, bans on qualified health care providers performing abortion care, and insurance coverage bans.

"(a) Every individual has a fundamental right to  make autonomous decisions about the individual’s own reproductive health, including the fundamental right to use or  refuse reproductive healthcare.

(b) Every individual who becomes pregnant has a fundamental right to continue the pregnancy and give birth or to have an abortion, and to make autonomous decisions about how to exercise that right.

(c) A fertilized egg, embryo, or fetus does not have independent rights under the laws of this State." IL ST CH 775 § 55


Biased Counseling

No state measure.

Mandatory Delays

No state measure.

Insurance Coverage for Abortion

Supports Abortion Coverage in the State

Does Illinois require statewide private insurance coverage of abortion services?  

Yes.  All individual or group private health-insurance plans that provide pregnancy-related benefits must include abortion coverage without exclusions or limitations.   Coverage for abortion may not impose a deductible, coinsurance, waiting period, or other cost-sharing limitation that is greater than that required for other pregnancy-related benefits. IL ST CH 215 § 5/356z.4a


Abortion Coverage for Low-Income People

Supports Low-Income Women’s Access to Abortion

Illinois allows women eligible for state medical assistance for general health care to obtain public funds for abortion services.  305 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/5-5 (Enacted 1967; Last Amended 2019).


Young People & Abortion

Parental Notice

Illinois law restricts young women’s access to abortion services by mandating parental notice.

Is the law enforceable?  Yes.

Who is considered a minor?  A young woman under the age of 18 who has never been married and is not emancipated under state law.

What is required – parental consent or parental notice?  Notice.

Who must be notified?  One parent.

Are there other trusted adults who may be notified instead?  Yes, the physician may notify a grandparent or legal guardian, or a step-parent living in the house, provided that person is over 21 years of age.

What is the process for providing notification?  A young woman may not obtain an abortion until at least 48 hours actual notice has been given in person or by telephone to a parent, grandparent, or step-parent living in the household.  If actual notice is not possible after a reasonable effort, 48-hour constructive notice by certified mail must be given.  If notice is given by certified mail, the 48-hour period begins at the time of the mailing.  Parental notice is not required if the pregnant woman is accompanied by a parent, grandparent or step-parent, or if notice is waived in writing by the person entitled to notice.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman is a victim of rape or incest?  Yes, if the young woman declares in writing that she is a victim of sexual abuse by a parent, grandparent, or step-parent.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman is a victim of child abuse?  Yes, if the young woman declares in writing that she is a victim of physical abuse or neglect by a parent, grandparent, or step-parent.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman’s health is threatened?  Yes, but only if the attending physician certifies that a medical emergency exists.  A medical emergency is defined as a medical condition that necessitates an immediate abortion to preserve the woman’s life or for which a delay will create "serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of major bodily function."

May the parental mandate be waived under any other circumstances?  Yes, the young woman may try to obtain permission from a judge.

If a young woman must obtain permission from a judge, what is the process?  She must secure a court order stating either that she is sufficiently mature and well informed enough to make her own decision or that notice is not in her best interest.

Are there other significant requirements under the law?  No.

Has a court considered the constitutionality of this law?  Yes.  In 1996, the Illinois district court issued a permanent injunction prohibiting enforcement of the state’s parental-notification law because of deficiencies in the judicial-bypass procedure, but did not reach any constitutional issues.  Zbaraz v. Ryan, No. 84 C 771 (N.D. Ill. Feb. 8, 1996).  Upon review in 2008, however, the Illinois district court found the statute unconstitutional on its face because it lacks language permiting a state court to authorize the consent for abortion.  On July 15, 2009, the Seventh Circuit said that the measure was "a permissible attempt to help a young woman make an informed choice about whether to have an abortion."  Zbaraz v. Madigan, No. 84 C 771, slip op. (N.D. Ill. Feb. 28, 2008), appeal docketed, No. 08-1620 (7th Cir. July 15, 2008).

Other information about the law:  None.

750 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/1, 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50 (Enacted 1995).


Family-Planning Policies

Insurance Coverage & Contraception

Supports Insurance Coverage of Contraception

Illinois law requires health-insurance plans that cover prescription medication to provide equitable coverage for contraception.

What is required?  If a health-insurance plan provides coverage for outpatient prescription medication or devices and outpatient services, it must provide coverage for all Food and Drug Administration-approved outpatient contraception and outpatient contraceptive services.

To which insurance plans does the law apply?  Individual and group health-insurance policies, including health maintenance organization policies, issued or renewed after January 1, 2004 that provide coverage for outpatient prescription medication or devices and outpatient services.

Does the law provide additional protections for women?  Yes.  An insurer may not impose any deductible, coinsurance, waiting period, or other cost-sharing or limitation that is greater than that required for any outpatient service or prescription drug or device otherwise covered by the policy.

Does the law contain a refusal clause, allowing certain employers and/or insurers to refuse to provide or pay for contraceptive coverage?  Yes.

What does the refusal clause allow? An insurance company may refuse to cover family-planning services that violate their religious beliefs.

Is the refusal clause overbroad, jeopardizing insurance coverage for contraception for women? Yes. The law permits insurers to refuse to provide contraceptive coverage. This broad refusal clause inappropriately includes insurers that operate in the public sphere.

Does the law require the refusing entity to notify the person affected?  No.

Are there circumstances under which a refusal clause may not be exercised? No.

Does the law provide a mechanism for women to obtain contraceptive coverage if their insurer exercises a refusal clause?  No.

215 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/356z.4 (Enacted 2003); 215 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 125/5-3 (Enacted 2003). 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/13 (Enacted 1998).


Improves Insurance Coverage of Contraception

Coverage of All Unique FDA-Approved Products

What is required?  Illinois law builds upon federal law by requiring that insurers cover all unique therapeutic products for contraception without cost-sharing, including those available over the counter, except male condoms.  If a prescriber deems a certain contraceptive drug or device medically necessary for a patient, the insurer must cover it.  Insurers must also cover patient education and counseling on contraception, and related services, such as device insertion and removal.

To which insurance plans does the law apply?  All health-insurance plans issued, amended, renewed, or delivered in the state.  

Does the law contain a refusal clause, allowing certain employers and/or insurers to refuse to provide or pay for contraceptive coverage?  No.

2016 Ill. Laws P.A. 99-672.


Improves Insurance Coverage of Contraception

No Co-Pay for Contraception

Illinois prohibits insurers from imposing any cost-sharing on all unique FDA-approved contraceptive products. § 215 Ill Comp. Stat. Ann 5/356z.4(3)(i) (2016).


Improves Insurance Coverage of Contraception

Illinois law requires health-insurance plans to cover dispensing of a 12-month supply of prescription contraceptives.

What is required?  Health-insurance plans must cover dispensing of a 12-month supply of contraceptives. § 215 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/356z.4(3)(iv) (2016).


Contraception Coverage for Low-Income People

Supports Low-Income Women’s Access to Contraception

MEDICAID COVERAGE OF EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTION (EC)

Illinois provides Medicaid coverage of emergency contraception without a prescription.

Handbook for Providers of Pharmacy Services, Section P-204.7 (March, 2016), at https://www.illinois.gov/hfs/SiteCollectionDocuments/p200.pdf.


Emergency Contraception

EC in the ER

Illinois law ensures that sexual-assault survivors receive information about emergency contraception (EC) in hospital emergency rooms.  Hospitals providing emergency services to sexual-assault survivors must develop a protocol that ensures that survivors will receive medically and factually accurate written and oral information about EC, the indications, counter-indications, and risks associated with EC, and a description of how and when women can obtain EC upon written order of a licensed physician.

The Illinois Department of Health must approve all protocols for providing information about EC.  The protocol must require that information about EC be provided to the woman as soon as possible, and no later than 12 hours after she appears at the hospital for emergency care.  Sexual-assault survivors must also be referred to a physician for appropriate follow-up care.

410 Ill. Comp. Stat 70/2.2 (Enacted 2001); Ill. Admin. Code tit. 77, 545.20, -.35, -.60, -.95 (Effective Jan. 15, 2003).


Other Important Issues

Clinic Protections

No state measure.

Refusals & Guarantees

Refusals of Medical Care

HEALTH-CARE PROVIDER AND HEALTH-CARE INSTITUTION REFUSAL CLAUSES

Illinois allows certain individuals or entities to refuse to comply with individual health-care instructions or decisions based on conscience. The law was modified in 2019 to explicitly include abortion within the definition of health care within the Health Care Right of Conscience Act.

To whom does the refusal clause apply?  Health-care providers and health-care institutions.

What does the refusal clause allow?  No physicians or health-care personnel may be found civilly or criminally liable for refusing to perform, assist, counsel, suggest, recommend, refer, or participate in a health-care service for reasons of conscience.  No person, association, or corporation that owns, operates, supervises, or manages a health-care facility may be found civilly or criminally liable for refusing to permit or provide a health service that violates the facility’s governing documents.  No health-care payer may be found civilly or criminally liable for refusing to pay or arrange for payment of a health-care service for reasons of conscience.

It is unlawful to discriminate against a health-care provider, or person, association, or corporation that owns, operates, supervises, or manages a health-care facility, or health-care payer for refusing to permit or provide a health service.

Does the law require the refusing entity to notify the persons affected?  No.

Are there circumstances under which a refusal clause may not be exercised?  No.

Does the law require the refusing individual or entity to provide medically and factually accurate information or provide a referral for the requested health service?  No.

Does the law provide a mechanism for women to otherwise obtain specific reproductive-health services, information, or referrals if an individual and/or entity exercises a refusal clause?  No.

Has a court considered the constitutionality of this refusal clause?  In September 2012, an Illinois court found that this refusal law allows specific pharmacies to refuse to dispense emergency contraception.  These plaintiffs had challenged the state’s guaranteed access to birth-control law.  The court ruled that the state may not enforce the regulation against these plaintiffs.

745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/1 to 11 (Enacted 1977; Last Amended 2019); 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/11.2 to 11.4 (Enacted 1998); 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/12 to 14 (Enacted 1977; Last Amended 1998). IL ST CH 775 § 55.


Guarantees Access to Prescriptions

In 2005, Illinois enacted a rule that guaranteed that women’s birth-control prescriptions would be filled.  Upon receipt of a valid and lawful prescription for contraception, a pharmacy was required to dispense the contraceptive or a suitable alternative without delay.  Ill. Admin. Code tit. 68, § 1330.91 (Enacted 2005; Last Amended 2008).

This law was challenged in court.  Menges v. Blagojevich, No. 3:05-CV-O3307-JES-BGC (C.D. Ill. filed Dec. 21, 2005); Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 104692 (Ill. filed May 23, 2007); Vandersand v. Wal-Mart, No. 3:06-CV-03292-JES-DGB (C.D. Ill. filed Dec. 11, 2006).  Parties reached a settlement agreement in the Menges and Vandersand cases, providing for an amendment to the law that would allow pharmacies to work by electronic communication with an off-site pharmacist to process the request if an individual pharmacist objected to dispensing the medication and no other pharmacist was available on-site.

In December 2008, the Supreme Court of Illinois reversed a lower court’s dismissal of the pharmacies’ complaint in the Morr-Fitz case, sending the case back to the lower courts without ruling on the merits of the regulation. Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 104692 (Ill. 12/18/08).  In August 2009, a county circuit court judge granted a preliminary injunction preventing the state from enforcing the law against the pharmacies until the court made a final decision on the merits of the claim.  Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 05CH495 (Ill. 08/21/09).

On April 29, 2010, Illinois repealed the 2005 rule and replaced it with a new, broader regulation, one part of which requires pharmacies to dispense women’s birth control.  Upon receipt of a valid prescription for lawfully prescribed medication, or upon request for nonprescription medication approved by the FDA for behind-the-counter distribution by pharmacies, a pharmacy was required to dispense the medication or a suitable alternative in a timely manner.  If the pharmacy did not have the medication or an alternative in stock, the pharmacy was required to obtain it in a manner consistent with customary pharmacy practice.  In the alternative, a patient may have chosen to have the prescription transferred to a different pharmacy or have the prescription returned.  Ill. Admin. Code tit. 68, § 1330.500(e-h) (Enacted 2010).

On May 28, 2010, in light of the new rule, the judge in the Morr-Fitz case expanded the August 2009 preliminary injunction that exempted the pharmacies in the case from complying with the law.  The judge did so to allow them to decline to stock or dispense emergency contraception and to allow them to file an amended complaint given the new rules.  Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 05CH495 (Ill. 05/28/10).

On April 5, 2011, the judge declared the law invalid as a violation under state and federal religious freedom laws and the state was enjoined from enforcing it.  Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 05CH495 (Ill. 04/5/11).  The state appealed the decision.  In September 2012, an appellate court reversed part of the lower court’s ruling. The court ruled that the injunction applies only to the pharmacies in this specific case, not all pharmacies or pharmacists in the state.  This decision allows the state to enforce the rule, which is now back in effect. Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 4-11-0398 (Ill.App.4th 9/20/12).


Guarantees Access to Prescriptions

In 2010, Illinois issued a broad regulation, one part of which requires pharmacies to dispense women’s birth control.  Upon receipt of a valid prescription for lawfully prescribed medication, or upon request for nonprescription medication approved by the FDA for behind-the-counter distribution by pharmacies, a pharmacy was required to dispense the medication or a suitable alternative in a timely manner.  If the pharmacy did not have the medication or an alternative in stock, the pharmacy was required to obtain it in a manner consistent with customary pharmacy practice.  In the alternative, a patient may have chosen to have the prescription transferred to a different pharmacy or have the prescription returned.  Ill. Admin. Code tit. 68, § 1330.500(e-h) (Enacted 2010).

On May 28, 2010, in light of this new rule, the judge in the Morr-Fitz case expanded an existing preliminary injunction exempting the pharmacies in the case from complying with the rule.  The judge did so to allow them to decline to stock or dispense emergency contraception and to allow them to file an amended complaint given the new rules.  Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 05CH495 (Ill. 05/28/10).

On April 5, 2011, the judge declared the law invalid as a violation under state and federal religious freedom laws and the state was enjoined from enforcing it.  Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 05CH495 (Ill. 04/5/11).  The state appealed the decision.  In September 2012, an appellate court reversed part of the lower court’s ruling. The court ruled that the injunction applies only to the pharmacies in this specific case, not all pharmacies or pharmacists in the state.  This decision allows the state to enforce the rule, which is now back in effect. Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich, No. 4-11-0398 (Ill.App.4th 9/20/12).


Counseling & Referral Bans

Counseling & Referral Ban

Grants provided by the Department of Health Services to nonprofit agencies and organizations under the "Problem Pregnancy Health Services and Care Act," which is designed "to expand and improve the availability of, and access to, needed comprehensive community services which assist problem pregnancies and to obtain proper care and assistance to those persons in need," may not be used to refer or counsel for abortion.  410 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 230/1-100 (Enacted 1979; Last Amended 1991), 2-100 (Enacted 1979), 3-101 (Enacted 1979; Last Amended 1997), 4-100 (Enacted 1979; Last Amended 1984); Ill. Admin. Code tit. 77, § 655.10.

A court held that a previous version of this law that prevented organizations that referred or counseled for abortion from receiving state problem-pregnancy funds was unconstitutional.  In addition, the court held that the previous version’s counseling restriction unconstitutionally "manipulate[d] the information available to pregnant women."  Planned Parenthood Ass’n-Chicago Area v. Kempiners, 568 F.Supp. 1490 (N.D. Ill. 1983).


Everyone should be able to decide if, when, how, and with whom they start or grow a family.

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