State Policies in Brief: Minors' Access to Contraceptive Services, Guttmacher Institute

Compilations of Laws and Cases

This state-by-state reference sheet provides the relevant laws granting minors authority to consent to contraceptive services. According to the report, forty-six states and the District of Columbia explicitly permit minors to consent to contraceptive services, though the circumstances under which a minor can consent are limited in some states. Twenty-one states and the District of Columbia explicitly allow minors to consent to all contraceptive services. Twenty-five states allow minors to consent to contraceptive services if one or more conditions are met, such as urgent medical need documented by a physician, if the minor is married or a parent, if the minor has ever been pregnant, or if other minimum requirements are met. Four states have no explicit policy on minors’ authority to consent to contraceptive services. This reference sheet is useful but it does not necessarily contain the nuances of these legal issues. The most reliable way to ensure accuracy and comprehensiveness is to read a state’s specific laws and regulations; thus, as with all reference sheets, advocates should verify all information provided.

Because the reference sheet is updated regularly, we have posted a link to allow access to the most recent version available.