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Michigan Abortion Wait Time

Women wishing to have an abortion in Michigan are required by the state to receive both written and verbal State-scripted information at least 24 hours before the procedure. While Northland Family Planning Centers has always provided– and continues to provide– our patients with helpful and informative decision-making information, the state required materials are not our informed consent materials.

You MUST PRINT OUT THE STATE CONFIRMATION MORE than 24 hours before your abortion appointment and bring it with you. If you don’t print this out WE CANNOT LEGALLY PERFORM YOUR ABORTION (this is Michigan law). You must bring the paperwork with you to your appointment.

If you do not have a printer, you can come to the clinic and pick up the information MORE than 24 hours (not the night before) before your abortion appointment. Only viewing the information on the computer does not satisfy the state law. 

You are also required by law to receive the verbal State-scripted information which we provide when you make your appointment.  This can be given over the phone.

We believe the mandated Michigan abortion waiting period, passed into state law in 1999, was not in the best interest of women, but to make abortion more difficult to access. We also believe that some of the State-scripted information is misleading and inaccurate. Therefore, we promise to continue to provide women with our own accurate and non-judgmental informed consent information on the day of their appointment.

We know having to follow the 24-hour waiting period is a hassle. We know you are making, or have made, this pregnancy decision thoughtfully, but in order to have an abortion you MUST receive the verbal State-scripted information and the State-written version of abortion information at least 24 hours before your abortion appointment.

Don’t forget to review our Pre Procedure Instructions.

Following The Law

There are two (2) parts to this law.

You are required by law to receive the verbal State-scripted information and to receive or review the State-written version of abortion information 24 hours before your abortion appointment.

You can count on us to not only follow the law, but to also welcome you into a comfortable and safe place to receive the most accurate information, most compassionate care and the highest quality medical treatment with the dignity and respect you deserve.

  • You must listen to the State-scripted verbal information
  • You must receive or review the State-written version of abortion information 24 hours before your abortion appointment

When you call for information or to schedule your appointment, we will follow the law, explain the requirements, and read you the State-scripted statement

There are three ways to get the state required information:

  • Come in and we can give you a copy
  • Call and we can fax a copy to you
  • Review the information on the State of Michigan web site and bring in a completed Informed Consent Confirmation Form

If you choose the State website:

If you choose the State of Michigan website for the State-required information, please be aware that it can be confusing. There are also extra requirements. Here are some user-friendly tips we’ve developed because many of our patients have complained that the instructions on the State’s website are not clear.

You are required to scroll through the entire web site but legally you don’t have to read it. You must follow each step; you cannot just skip to the end. The link we’ve provided will take you to the homepage of the Department of Community Health’s page on Michigan’s Informed Consent law. Scroll down to begin the review of the documents.

Step 1:

You will have four choices: click on the method of abortion you will be having.

(1)Medical Abortion using Mifepristone and Misoprostol,

(2)Medication-Induced Abortion,

(3)Dilation and Evacuation (D&E) or

(4)Suction Curettage.

IMPORTANT: You must review the information of the specific procedure you, the patient, will undergo.  Therefore, if you review the description of one procedure, and a different procedure is to be performed at your appointment instead, you must be given a description of that different procedure and then must wait ANOTHER 24 hours before that procedure can be legally performed.  TO AVOID SUCH POSSIBLE DELAY: you may view descriptions of more than one procedure on this website OR we can provide you with descriptions of more than one procedure if you choose to pick up the paperwork at our office.

NORTHLAND PATIENTS: Choose either Medical Abortion, D&E or Suction Curettage. DO NOT SELECT Medication-Induced Abortion (saline) as we do not use this method.

Step 2:

You will then be directed to go to the Fetal Development links page. Click on the number of weeks on the Fetal Development Index page that most closely matches the fetus’ gestational age, using your last menstrual period (see our Pregnancy Calculator) or recent sonogram (ultrasound) as a guide.

Step 3:

You will have two choices:

  • A list of clinics offering free ultrasound: THESE ARE NOT WOMEN’S ABORTION HEALTH CLINICS! THEY ARE CRISIS PREGNANCY CENTERS THAT ARE AGAINST WOMEN HAVING ABORTIONS. THE INFORMATION PROVIDED BY THESE CLINICS WILL BE BIASED AND JUDGMENTAL.
  • OR, WE SUGGEST you choose to proceed to Step 3, the prenatal care page
    • Scroll down and select Step 4, Parenting
    • Scroll down to Step 5, the Informed Consent Confirmation Form.On this page, you will see that a date and time have been added in
      • You must print this page and bring it in with you
    • To print, go to the top of the screen, just below the Department of Community Health banner and click on “Printer Friendly”.
      • THIS IS THE CORRECT FORM TO PRINT OUT
      • If you bring the wrong form, you will not be able to have your abortion that day: we have to give you a new informed consent packet and you have to wait an additional 24 hours.
    • (Note: there is an option on the site called Related Content with a form. This is the wrong form. It will be given to you when you come to the clinic. You do not need to print it out.)

Print and bring the informed consent confirmation form with you on the day of your appointment.

THIS FORM MUST HAVE:
  • The date and time it was printed
  • The earliest date and time that you are able to have an abortion under this law
  • An expiration date that is 2 weeks from the day you printed the Confirmation Form

IF YOUR APPOINTMENT IS SCHEDULED AFTER THE EXPIRATION DATE YOU WILL NEED TO REVISIT THE WEBSITE TO OBTAIN A CONFIRMATION FORM THAT MUST BE VALID ON THE DATE OF YOUR APPOINTMENT.

We’re here for you!

If you have any questions about this process or the Michigan law, please call us during regular business hours. 1-800-447-7354