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UPDATE: Appeal Judges say doctors not allowed to abort mentally ill woman’s baby

24 June 2019

Doctors are not allowed to abort a mentally ill woman’s baby, Court of Appeal Judges have ruled today.

On Friday, a Judge said that abortion was in the mother’s best interests.

But now three appeal judges have overturned that decision after the woman’s grandmother launched a legal challenge.

NHS bosses had previously asked Mrs Justice Lieven for permission for doctors to perform an abortion.

But the woman’s mother was against the abortion and said she could care for the child. A social worker who works with the woman – thought to be in her 20s – also said the pregnancy should go ahead.

In her ruling on Friday, Justice Lieven admitted she was making an ‘enormous’ decision and she was “acutely conscious of the fact that for the State to order a woman to have a termination where it appears that doesn’t want it is an immense intrusion.”

Our response

This is a common sense ruling and hugely welcome. Friday’s decision was simply not right. Not only did it fail to consider the rights of the unborn baby, it also represented a significant overreach of the State. Today’s decision at the Court of Appeal will bring huge relief to the family.



In any pregnancy, both the woman and preborn baby have inherent value and dignity, by virtue of being made in the image of God. CARE is passionately pro-woman and pro-life.

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