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State Laws

New Hampshire

Political Information

Executive (Governor)






Abortion-Care Policies

Abortion Providers

Abortion Providers: Expanded Access to Surgical Abortion

Nurse Practitioners and Physician’s Assistants in New Hampshire currently provide surgical abortions.

There are no provisions in New Hampshire law that prohibit this practice. N.H. Rev. Stat. §326-B:11 (Enacted 2005; Last Amended 2009); N.H. Rev. Stat. § 328-D:10 (Enacted 1989; Last Amended 2008); N.H. Code Admin. Med 600-612;  N.H. Code Admin. Nur. 200.

Abortion Rights

Abortion Bans Throughout Pregnancy: Procedure Ban

New Hampshire outlaws a safe second-trimester abortion procedure with no exception to protect a woman’s health.  2012 N.H. Laws 283.

New Hampshire’s law makes certain previability, second-trimester abortion procedures a felony, unless the physician and another legally and financially independent physician determine that the abortion is necessary to save the woman’s life.  Physicians in violation of the law would also be subject to imprisonment for up to 10 years, fines of up to $100,000, or both.  2012 N.H. Laws 283.

There is also a Federal Abortion Ban, which applies nationwide regardless of state law.  The federal ban prohibits certain second-trimester abortion procedures and has no exception for a woman’s health.  In April 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the ban, making it the first time since Roe v. Wade that the court has upheld a ban on a previability abortion procedure.

Biased Counseling

No state measure.

Mandatory Delays

No state measure.

Insurance Coverage for Abortion

No state measure.

Abortion Coverage for Low-Income People

Restricts Low-Income Women’s Access to Abortion

New Hampshire prohibits funding for abortion for women eligible for state medical assistance for general health care unless the procedure is necessary to preserve her life or the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.  Dep’t of Health & Human Servs., Office of Health Management, Medicaid Admin. Bureau, Amount, Duration and Scope of Medical and Remedial Care and Services Provided, Attachment 3.1-A, p. 2-a, § 5a (July 1, 1997).

Young People & Abortion

Parental Notice

New Hampshire law restricts young women’s access to abortion.

Is the law enforceable? Yes.  It has not yet been challenged in the courts.

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, guardian, or conservator.

Are there other trusted adults who may be notified instead?  No.

What is the process for providing notification?  A young woman may not receive abortion services until at least two business days after written notice has been delivered personally or sent by certified mail.  If notice is given by certified mail, time of delivery shall be at noon the next day that regular mail delivery occurs.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman is a survivor of rape or incest? No.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman is a survivor of child abuse? No.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman’s health is threatened?  Yes, but only if the provider certifies in the woman’s medical record that a medical emergency exists.  A medical emergency is defined as "a condition that, on the basis of the physician’s good-faith clinical judgment, so complicates the medical condition of the pregnant woman as to necessitate the immediate abortion… to avert her death or for which a delay will create serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a 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 petition the court for a waiver.  Then, upon the petition, motion, or after an appropriate hearing, any judge of a "competent jurisdiction" shall authorize the physician to provide abortion services if the judge determines that the young woman is "mature and capable of giving informed consent" for the abortion.  The young woman may participate in the court proceedings on her own behalf and the court may appoint a guardian ad litem for her.  The court will also inform the young woman that she has a right to counsel and will provide counsel upon request.

Are there other significant requirements under the law?  No.

Has a court considered the constitutionality of this law? No.

Other information about the law:  None.

N.H. Rev. St. § 132:32-132:36 (Enacted 2010; Last Amended 2012).

Family-Planning Policies

Insurance Coverage & Contraception

Supports Insurance Coverage of Contraception

New Hampshire 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 services or prescription medication, it must provide coverage for all Food and Drug Administration-approved contraception.

To which insurance plans does the law apply?  Any group or blanket health-insurance policies issued or renewed by insurers, health service corporations, and health maintenance organizations (HMOs) that provide coverage for outpatient services or prescription medication.

Does the law provide additional protections for women?  Yes.  Coverage for prescription contraception and outpatient contraceptive services must be provided under the same terms and conditions as those for other prescription medication and other outpatient services.

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

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 415:18-i, 420-A:17-c, 420-B:8-gg (Enacted 1999; Last Amended 2010).

Improves Insurance Coverage of Contraception

New Hampshire law codifies the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive-coverage policy by requiring that insurers cover without cost-sharing at least one prescription contraceptive drug, device, or product within each method identified by the Food and Drug Administration to prevent pregnancy. If a prescriber deems a certain contraceptive drug or device medically necessary for a patient, the insurer must cover it without cost-sharing.  Insurers must also cover patient education and counseling on contraception, and related services, such as device insertion and removal. The law applies to all health-insurance plans issued or renewed on or after January 1, 2019.

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 415:6-v, 415:18-i, 420-A:17-c (2018).

Improves Insurance Coverage of Contraception

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

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 415:6-v, 415:18-i, 420-A:17-c (2018).

Improves Insurance Coverage of Contraception

New Hampshire prohibits most insurers from imposing any cost-sharing on at least one product in each FDA-approved contraceptive method.

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 415:6-v, 415:18-i, 420-A:17-c (2018).

Contraception Coverage for Low-Income People

Supports Low-Income Women’s Access to Contraception

New Hampshire provides increased access to reproductive-health-care services through a State Plan Amendment (SPA) to its Medicaid program.  The SPA allows the state to cover family-planning services for women and men with family incomes at or below 201 percent of the federal poverty level who are not currently enrolled in Medicaid and do not have any other health insurance.  Additionally, enrollees must be (1) U.S. citizens or persons who meet the state’s defined immigration requirements and (2) New Hampshire residents.

Beneficiaries of family-planning coverage available through the SPA are not required to pay premiums or co-payments for covered services.  Covered services include: all FDA-approved birth-control methods, devices and supplies; a comprehensive reproductive-health history, physical examination, and pap smear; emergency services directly related to the contraceptive method and follow-up; pregnancy testing and counseling; prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections; HIV testing and counseling; limited diagnostic services for fertility management; male and female sterilization; reproductive-health education and counseling.

New Hampshire State Plan Amendment, 13-008, at http://www.medicaid.gov/State-resource-center/Medicaid-State-Plan-Amendments/Downloads/NH/NH-13-008.pdf.  Modified income eligibility standard, at http://www.medicaid.gov/State-resource-center/Medicaid-State-Plan-Amendments/Downloads/NH/NH-13-0017-MM1.pdf.

Improves Insurance Coverage of Contraception

New Hampshire law requires publicly funded insurance plans to cover dispensing a 12-month supply of oral contraceptives at one time.

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §415:18-i (2018); New Hampshire State Plan Amendment, 19-0002, at https://www.medicaid.gov/State-resource-center/Medicaid-State-Plan-Amendments/Downloads/NH/NH-19-0002.pdf.

Emergency Contraception

No state measure.

Other Important Issues

Clinic Protections

Clinic Protections

New Hampshire has a law stating that no person shall knowingly enter or remain on a public way or sidewalk adjacent to a reproductive-health-care facility within a radius up to 25 feet of any portion of an entrance, exit, or driveway. This section does not apply to anyone entering or leaving the facilities; employees; patient escorts; law enforcement; or anyone using the sidewalk or street adjacent to the facilities solely for reaching another destination.

"Reproductive-health-care facility" means a place, other than within or upon the grounds of a hospital, where abortion services are offered.

"Patient escort services" means the act of physically escorting patients through the buffer zone to the reproductive-health-care facility and does not include counseling or protesting.

Reproductive-health-care facilities must clearly demarcate the buffer zone and post signage denoting details of the zone.  Prior to posting the signage a reproductive-health-care facility shall consult with local law enforcement and local authorities with responsibilities specific to the approval of locations and size of the signs to ensure compliance with local ordinances.  This zone is only enforceable during the facility’s business hours. (N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann § 132:38 (2014)).

In July 2014, Alliance Defending Freedom challenged the law on behalf of several anti-choice protesters in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire.  Protesters allege that the law is materially indistinguishable from the Massachusetts buffer-zone law the U.S. Supreme Court struck down in McCullen v. Coakley.  One day before the New Hampshire law was set to take effect, the district court judge issued a temporary restraining order.

Two weeks later, the court ordered an agreed-upon stay of proceedings and dissolved the temporary restraining order.  Both parties agreed that the law has yet to take effect because no reproductive-health facilities have posted signage establishing a buffer zone.  In the absence of such signs, the law’s enforcement mechanisms are inoperative and the law is not in force.  (Reddy v. Foster, 14-cv-299-JL (D.N.H. 2014)).

Refusals & Guarantees

No state measure.

Counseling & Referral Bans

No state measure.

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

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