CHAPTER 135L NOTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS REGARDING PREGNANT MINORS
135L.1 DEFINITIONS.
135L.2 PROSPECTIVE MINOR PARENTS DECISION-MAKING ASSISTANCE PROGRAM ESTABLISHED.
135L.6 FRAUDULENT PRACTICE.
135L.7 IMMUNITIES.
135L.8 ADOPTION OF RULES -- IMPLEMENTATION AND DOCUMENTS.



        

135L.1 DEFINITIONS. As used in this chapter unless the context otherwise requires: 1. "Abortion" means an abortion as defined in chapter 146. 2. "Adult" means a person eighteen years of age or older. 3. "Child-placing agency" means any agency, public, semipublic, or private, which represents itself as placing children, receiving children for placement, or actually engaging in placement of children and includes the department of human services. 4. "Court" means the juvenile court. 5. "Grandparent" means the parent of an individual who is the parent of the pregnant minor. 6. "Medical emergency" means a condition which, based upon a physician's judgment, necessitates an abortion to avert the pregnant minor's death, or for which a delay will create a risk of serious impairment of a major bodily function. 7. "Minor" means a person under eighteen years of age who has not been and is not married. 8. "Parent" means one parent or a legal guardian or custodian of a pregnant minor. 9. "Responsible adult" means an adult, who is not associated with an abortion provider, chosen by a pregnant minor to assist the minor in the decision-making process established in this chapter.

         Section History: Recent Form


         96 Acts, ch 1011, §1, 14; 97 Acts, ch 173, §1
        

135L.2 PROSPECTIVE MINOR PARENTS DECISION-MAKING ASSISTANCE PROGRAM ESTABLISHED. 1. A decision-making assistance program is created to provide assistance to minors in making informed decisions relating to pregnancy. The program shall offer and include all of the following: a. (1) A video, to be developed by a person selected through a request for proposals process or other contractual agreement, which provides information regarding the various options available to a pregnant minor with regard to the pregnancy, including a decision to continue the pregnancy to term and retain parental rights following the child's birth, a decision to continue the pregnancy to term and place the child for adoption following the child's birth, and a decision to terminate the pregnancy through abortion. The video shall provide the information in a manner and language, including but not limited to the use of closed captioning for the hearing-impaired, which could be understood by a minor. (2) The video shall explain that public and private agencies are available to assist a pregnant minor with any alternative chosen. (3) The video shall explain that if the pregnant minor decides to continue the pregnancy to term, and to retain parental rights to the child, the father of the child is liable for the support of the child. (4) The video shall explain that tendering false documents is a fraudulent practice in the fourth degree pursuant to section 135L.6. b. Written decision-making materials which include all of the following: (1) Information regarding the options described in the video including information regarding the agencies and programs available to provide assistance to the pregnant minor in parenting a child; information relating to adoption including but not limited to information regarding child- placing agencies; and information regarding abortion including but not limited to the legal requirements relative to the performance of an abortion on a pregnant minor. The information provided shall include information explaining that if a pregnant minor decides to continue the pregnancy to term and to retain parental rights, the father of the child is liable for the support of the child and that if the pregnant minor seeks public assistance on behalf of the child, the pregnant minor shall, and if the pregnant minor is not otherwise eligible as a public assistance recipient, the pregnant minor may, seek the assistance of the child support recovery unit in establishing the paternity of the child, and in seeking support payments for a reasonable amount of the costs associated with the pregnancy, medical support, and maintenance from the father of the child, or if the father is a minor, from the parents of the minor father. The information shall include a listing of the agencies and programs and the services available from each. (2) A workbook which is to be used in viewing the video and which includes a questionnaire and exercises to assist a pregnant minor in viewing the video and in considering the options available regarding the minor's pregnancy. (3) A detachable certification form to be signed by the pregnant minor certifying that the pregnant minor was offered a viewing of the video and the written decision-making materials. 2. a. The video shall be available through the state and local offices of the Iowa department of public health, the department of human services, and the judicial branch and through the office of each licensed physician who performs abortions. b. The video may be available through the office of any licensed physician who does not perform abortions, upon the request of the physician; through any nonprofit agency serving minors, upon the request of the agency; and through any other person providing services to minors, upon the request of the person. 3. During the initial appointment between a licensed physician from whom a pregnant minor is seeking the performance of an abortion and a pregnant minor, the licensed physician shall offer the viewing of the video and the written decision-making materials to the pregnant minor, and shall obtain the signed and dated certification form from the pregnant minor. A licensed physician shall not perform an abortion on a pregnant minor prior to obtaining the completed certification form from a pregnant minor. 4. A pregnant minor shall be encouraged to select a responsible adult, preferably a parent of the pregnant minor, to accompany the pregnant minor in viewing the video and receiving the decision-making materials. 5. To the extent possible and at the discretion of the pregnant minor, the person responsible for impregnating the pregnant minor shall also be involved in the viewing of the video and in the receipt of written decision-making materials. 6. Following the offering of the viewing of the video and of the written decision-making materials, the pregnant minor shall sign and date the certification form attached to the materials, and shall submit the completed form to the licensed physician. The licensed physician shall also provide a copy of the completed certification form to the pregnant minor.

         Section History: Recent Form

         96 Acts, ch 1011, § 2, 14; 96 Acts, ch 1174, § 1; 97 Acts, ch 173,
      §2; 98 Acts, ch 1047, §16
         Referred to in § 135L.3, 135L.6
        

135L.3 NOTIFICATION OF PARENT PRIOR TO THE PERFORMANCE OF ABORTION ON A PREGNANT MINOR -- REQUIREMENTS -- CRIMINAL PENALTY. 1. A licensed physician shall not perform an abortion on a pregnant minor until at least forty-eight hours' prior notification is provided to a parent of the pregnant minor. 2. The licensed physician who will perform the abortion shall provide notification in person or by mailing the notification by restricted certified mail to a parent of the pregnant minor at the usual place of abode of the parent. For the purpose of delivery by restricted certified mail, the time of delivery is deemed to occur at twelve o'clock noon on the next day on which regular mail delivery takes place, subsequent to the mailing. 3. If the pregnant minor objects to the notification of a parent prior to the performance of an abortion on the pregnant minor, the pregnant minor may petition the court to authorize waiver of the notification requirement pursuant to this section in accordance with the following procedures: a. The court shall ensure that the pregnant minor is provided with assistance in preparing and filing the petition for waiver of notification and shall ensure that the pregnant minor's identity remains confidential. b. The pregnant minor may participate in the court proceedings on the pregnant minor's own behalf. The court may appoint a guardian ad litem for the pregnant minor and the court shall appoint a guardian ad litem for the pregnant minor if the pregnant minor is not accompanied by a responsible adult or if the pregnant minor has not viewed the video as provided pursuant to section 135L.2. In appointing a guardian ad litem for the pregnant minor, the court shall consider a person licensed to practice psychology pursuant to chapter 154B, a licensed social worker pursuant to chapter 154C, a licensed marital and family therapist pursuant to chapter 154D, or a licensed mental health counselor pursuant to chapter 154D to serve in the capacity of guardian ad litem. The court shall advise the pregnant minor of the pregnant minor's right to court-appointed legal counsel, and shall, upon the pregnant minor's request, provide the pregnant minor with court-appointed legal counsel, at no cost to the pregnant minor. c. The court proceedings shall be conducted in a manner which protects the confidentiality of the pregnant minor and notwithstanding section 232.147 or any other provision to the contrary, all court documents pertaining to the proceedings shall remain confidential and shall be sealed. Only the pregnant minor, the pregnant minor's guardian ad litem, the pregnant minor's legal counsel, and persons whose presence is specifically requested by the pregnant minor, by the pregnant minor's guardian ad litem, or by the pregnant minor's legal counsel may attend the hearing on the petition. d. Notwithstanding any law or rule to the contrary, the court proceedings under this section shall be given precedence over other pending matters to ensure that the court reaches a decision expeditiously. e. Upon petition and following an appropriate hearing, the court shall waive the notification requirements if the court determines either of the following: (1) That the pregnant minor is mature and capable of providing informed consent for the performance of an abortion. (2) That the pregnant minor is not mature, or does not claim to be mature, but that notification is not in the best interest of the pregnant minor. f. The court shall issue specific factual findings and legal conclusions, in writing, to support the decision. g. Upon conclusion of the hearing, the court shall immediately issue a written order which shall be provided immediately to the pregnant minor, the pregnant minor's guardian ad litem, the pregnant minor's legal counsel, or to any other person designated by the pregnant minor to receive the order. h. An expedited, confidential appeal shall be available to a pregnant minor for whom the court denies a petition for waiver of notification. An order granting the pregnant minor's application for waiver of notification is not subject to appeal. Access to the appellate courts for the purpose of an appeal under this section shall be provided to a pregnant minor twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. i. A pregnant minor who chooses to utilize the waiver of notification procedures under this section shall not be required to pay a fee at any level of the proceedings. Fees charged and court costs taxed in connection with a proceeding under this section are waived. j. If the court denies the petition for waiver of notification and if the decision is not appealed or all appeals are exhausted, the court shall advise the pregnant minor that, upon the request of the pregnant minor, the court will appoint a licensed marital and family therapist to assist the pregnant minor in addressing any intrafamilial problems. All costs of services provided by a court-appointed licensed marital and family therapist shall be paid by the court through the expenditure of funds appropriated to the judicial branch. k. Venue for proceedings under this section is in any court in the state. l. The supreme court shall prescribe rules to ensure that the proceedings under this section are performed in an expeditious and confidential manner. The rules shall require that the hearing on the petition shall be held and the court shall rule on the petition within forty-eight hours of the filing of the petition. If the court fails to hold the hearing and rule on the petition within forty-eight hours of the filing of the petition and an extension is not requested, the petition is deemed granted and waiver of the notification requirements is deemed authorized. The court shall immediately provide documentation to the pregnant minor and to the pregnant minor's legal counsel if the pregnant minor is represented by legal counsel, demonstrating that the petition is deemed granted and that waiver of the notification requirements is deemed authorized. Resolution of a petition for authorization of waiver of the notification requirement shall be completed within ten calendar days as calculated from the day after the filing of the petition to the day of issuance of any final decision on appeal. m. The requirements of this section regarding notification of a parent of a pregnant minor prior to the performance of an abortion on a pregnant minor do not apply if any of the following applies: (1) The abortion is authorized in writing by a parent entitled to notification. (2) (a) The pregnant minor declares, in a written statement submitted to the attending physician, a reason for not notifying a parent and a reason for notifying a grandparent of the pregnant minor in lieu of the notification of a parent. Upon receipt of the written statement from the pregnant minor, the attending physician shall provide notification to a grandparent of the pregnant minor, specified by the pregnant minor, in the manner in which notification is provided to a parent. (b) The notification form shall be in duplicate and shall include both of the following: (i) A declaration which informs the grandparent of the pregnant minor that the grandparent of the pregnant minor may be subject to civil action if the grandparent accepts notification. (ii) A provision that the grandparent of the pregnant minor may refuse acceptance of notification. (3) The pregnant minor's attending physician certifies in writing that a medical emergency exists which necessitates the immediate performance of an abortion, and places the written certification in the medical file of the pregnant minor. (4) The pregnant minor declares that the pregnant minor is a victim of child abuse pursuant to section 232.68, the person responsible for the care of the child is a parent of the child, and either the abuse has been reported pursuant to the procedures prescribed in chapter 232, division III, part 2, or a parent of the child is named in a report of founded child abuse. The department of human services shall maintain confidentiality under chapter 232 and shall not release any information in response to a request for public records, discovery procedures, subpoena, or any other means, unless the release of information is expressly authorized by the pregnant minor regarding the pregnant minor's pregnancy and abortion, if the abortion is obtained. A person who knowingly violates the confidentiality provisions of this subparagraph is guilty of a serious misdemeanor. (5) The pregnant minor declares that the pregnant minor is a victim of sexual abuse as defined in chapter 709 and has reported the sexual abuse to law enforcement. n. A licensed physician who knowingly performs an abortion in violation of this section is guilty of a serious misdemeanor. o. All records and files of a court proceeding maintained under this section shall be destroyed by the clerk of court when one year has elapsed from any of the following, as applicable: (1) The date that the court issues an order waiving the notification requirements. (2) The date after which the court denies the petition for waiver of notification and the decision is not appealed. (3) The date after which the court denies the petition for waiver of notification, the decision is appealed, and all appeals are exhausted. p. A person who knowingly violates the confidentiality requirements of this section relating to court proceedings and documents is guilty of a serious misdemeanor.

         Section History: Recent Form

         96 Acts, ch 1011, § 4, 14; 96 Acts, ch 1174, § 2; 97 Acts, ch 173,
      § 3--11; 98 Acts, ch 1047, §17
         Referred to in § 232.5, 602.8102(31)
        

135L.4 Repealed by 97 Acts, ch 203, § 19.

135L.5 Repealed by 97 Acts, ch 173, § 17. See § 135L.3, subsection 3, paragraph m.

135L.6 FRAUDULENT PRACTICE. A person who does any of the following is guilty of a fraudulent practice in the fourth degree pursuant to section 714.12: 1. Knowingly tenders a false original or copy of the signed and dated certification form described in section 135L.2, to be retained by the licensed physician. 2. Knowingly tenders a false original or copy of the notification document mailed to a parent or grandparent of the pregnant minor under this chapter, or a false original or copy of the order waiving notification relative to the performance of an abortion on a pregnant minor.

         Section History: Recent Form

         96 Acts, ch 1011, § 7, 14; 96 Acts, ch 1174, § 5; 97 Acts, ch 173,
      §12
         Referred to in § 135L.2
        

135L.7 IMMUNITIES. 1. With the exception of the civil liability which may apply to a grandparent of a pregnant minor who accepts notification under this chapter, a person is immune from any liability, civil or criminal, for any act, omission, or decision made in connection with a good faith effort to comply with the provisions of this chapter. 2. This section shall not be construed to limit civil liability of a person for any act, omission, or decision made in relation to the performance of a medical procedure on a pregnant minor.

         Section History: Recent Form

         96 Acts, ch 1011, §8, 14; 97 Acts, ch 173, §13
        

135L.8 ADOPTION OF RULES -- IMPLEMENTATION AND DOCUMENTS. The Iowa department of public health shall adopt rules to implement the notification procedures pursuant to this chapter including but not limited to rules regarding the documents necessary for notification of a parent or grandparent of a pregnant minor who is designated to receive notification under this chapter.

         Section History: Recent Form

         96 Acts, ch 1011, § 9, 14; 97 Acts, ch 173, §14

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