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Hodgson v. Minnesota

United States Supreme Court
497 U.S. 417 (1990)


Facts

Thirty-eight states had passed laws making it illegal for minors to get abortions without notifying their parent(s) and/or receiving parental consent, after the United States Supreme Court upheld a parental consent state law in Planned Parenthood v. Ashcroft, 462 U.S. 476 (1983). Eight states, including Minnesota, enacted laws requiring notification of both parents. Minnesota’s law also permitted judicial bypass of the parental-notification process as required by the Court’s decision in Planned Parenthood v. Danforth, 428 U.S. 52 (1976). The trial court struck down Minnesota’s law, finding that it was “a significant burden on a minor’s right to obtain [an] abortion” to require the minor to notify her father. The trial court found that many minors “legitimately feared violence from their fathers,” and that these minors were unlikely to use the judicial-bypass option. The trial court also found that the purpose of the law was to deter minors from having abortions and that the notification requirement and bypass option “did not serve any goal of informed consent or dialogue with mature decisionmakers.” The case came before the United States Supreme Court for review.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Kennedy, J.)

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  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
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Concurrence (O’Connor, J.)

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