Australian Abortion Laws

Each State and Territory in Australia has its own laws regarding abortion. Each require the informed consent of the woman prior to the procedure. Make sure you are aware of the abortion laws where you live so that you can make the most informed, empowered decision for you regarding your unexpected pregnancy.

Australian Capital Territory

Abortion was considered a criminal act until 2002, when it was repealed. Abortion must be performed by a medical professional in a medical facility that has been approved by the Minister for Health.

Medical Practitioner’s Amendment Bill 2002

New South Wales

In New South Wales, abortion falls under the Crimes Act. Abortion can be considered lawful if a doctor finds the pregnancy to put the mother’s life or mental health at risk. Social and economic circumstances, as well as medical, may also be considered.

CRIMES ACT 1900 – SECT 82, SECT 83, SECT 84

Northern Territory

As of March 2017, abortion is legal up to 14 weeks’ gestation in the NT if a doctor believes it appropriate considering the woman’s present and future physical, psychological, social and economic circumstances. Between 14 and 23 weeks, two doctors must agree that the abortion is appropriate. After 23 weeks, it is only legal in the case that it would save the woman’s life.

This legislation is new and is not yet available in the database.

Queensland

Abortion is under the criminal code in Queensland, legal only if a licensed medical professional believes the woman’s physical or psychological health is at risk from continued pregnancy.

CRIMINAL CODE 1899 – SECT 224, SECT 225, SECT 226

South Australia

Abortion is legal only if two medically licensed doctors agree that pregnancy presents immediate danger to the woman’s physical or psychological health, or in the case of serious fetal abnormality. Abortion under other circumstances than these is considered a crime.

Criminal Law Consolidation Act 1935 (PDF page 71; document page 47)

Tasmania

Abortion in Tasmania is legal up to 16 weeks’ gestation. After that, it is only legal with the agreement of two doctors.

Reproductive Health Act 2013

Victoria

In Victoria, abortion is legal up to 24 weeks’ gestation by a licensed medical professional. After 24 weeks, a doctor must determine if abortion is in the best interest of the patient.

Abortion Law Reform Act 2008

Western Australia

Abortion in WA is legal up to 20 weeks’ gestation. Women under the age of 16 must be counselled by a medical professional other than the one who would be performing the procedure prior to an abortion.

Health Act 1911 (pages 333-336)

Diamond Women’s Support wants women across Australia to have access to quality health care and medically accurate information. At our center, we offer you a look at each of your options and give you all the time you need to choose which one is right for you. It’s as easy as filling out our contact form.

Disclaimer: each of the above is a brief summary of abortion laws and is not legal advice.