If you will not be eighteen by the time of your appointment for an abortion, the NEBRASKA PARENTAL NOTIFICATION LAW applies to you! Even if you live in another state or country, whether or not your home state or country has such a law, you must comply with the Nebraska Law. This law applies to medical, as well as surgical, abortions.
The Nebraska Law requires that the doctor at the clinic where you will have your abortion, NOTIFY one parent or legal guardian, chosen by you, that you are to have an abortion.
IF YOU PLAN TO TELL YOUR PARENT
this Law presents no problem.
IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO TELL YOUR PARENT
The NEBRASKA PARENTAL NOTIFICATION LAW provides an option for a judicial waiver of notification. To obtain this waiver you must go to a appropriate county courthouse and fill out a request for judicial bypass. If you live in Nebraska you may go to the county courthouse where you live or to any county that borders your home county. You may also go to the county courthouse in the county where the clinic is located (SARPY COUNTY) or any county that surrounds Sarpy County. If you do not live in Nebraska you may go to the courthouse of the nearest Nebraska county to you or to the Sarpy County Courthouse. For your convenience a copy of the request and the instructions to complete it are included in this web site, you may click here, at the button on the left or on the banner at the bottom of the page.
The Nebraska law requires that the forms be placed in a conspicous place in the Juvenile Court Clerk's Office and to have detailed information on how to complete it. If you cannot find the form, or need help filling it out, the clerk of the court will help you.
The Clerk or the Judge will advise you that you have the right to have a court appointed lawyer help you with your request. This help is free to you. You may also request to represent yourself; however, the judge may appoint a "guardian ad litem" to assist you and tell the judge what he or she thinks is best for you. An appointment will be made for you to meet privately with the judge. At this meeting you, your lawyer, if you have one, and the guardian as litem will be present. You may also request to have anyone else with you that you wish.
If the judge decides you are mature and capable of understanding and giving an informed consent for the abortion, or if the judge decides that not involving a parent is in your best interest, s/he will grant you the waver. The judge may decide this while you are in her/his office or s/he may take up to one week to make a decision. The judge will give you a decision in writing. He will also provide copies to your attorney and guardian ad litem as well as anyone else you wish to receive a copy. You will need to bring an original copy, bearing the court seal, when you come for you appointment.
THE LAW REQUIRES ALL RECORDS ABOUT YOUR REQUEST AND THE MEETINGS THAT TAKE PLACE BE SEALED AND KEPT CONFIDENTIAL.
If the judge denies your request or fails to reach a decision within seven days you may appeal to the Nebraska Supreme Court. This appeal, as well as any additional legal counsel the State of Nebraska provides, is free to you. Again, all that transpires is confidential.
There are many questions the judge may ask during the interview. These may include: When did you discover you were pregnant? Why do you feel it is not in your, or possibly your parents, best interests to tell them you are pregnant? How much do you know about pregnancy, what it means to abort a pregnancy, what it could mean to parent, what if you were to adopt or ask for a court appointed foster parent for your child? How did you come to your decision to have an abortion? What other major decisions have you had to make? Who have you discussed the pregnancy and your decision to abort with? What do you think would happen if you told a parent? Do you go to school..., which grade are you in..., where..., what kind of grades do you get? Do you have plans for additional education after high school? What were you using for birth control? What will you do to keep from getting pregnant in the future? How do you plan to pay for this abortion? Do you work? How much do you make? The better prepared you are to answer these and additional questions, the more likely the judge will grant the waiver.
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