How New York protects your right to reproductive health care

These protections apply to anyone providing or receiving reproductive health care in New York.

Dear New Yorkers,

One of my most important responsibilities is protecting your right to reproductive health care – including abortion.  This brochure explains: 

  • state and federal laws protecting New Yorkers’ rights to get and provide reproductive health care services 
  • New York laws on abortion rights, insurance coverage, confidentiality, clinic access, and discrimination 
  • new laws to protect abortion seekers in New York from other states’ attempts to penalize abortion care provided legally in New York

For abortion information and resources, contact our Reproductive Task Force at 212-899-5567. Report any conduct that may violate the law, whether you are a patient or a provider. If you believe your rights have been violated or threatened, contact our office using the resources we have listed.

New York State Attorney General Signature
Headshot of Attorney General Letitia James

Access to abortion 

People of all ages have the absolute right to abortion through the 24th week of pregnancy.   

After 24 weeks, abortion is permitted if your medical provider decides your fetus is not viable or your life, physical health, or mental health is at risk.   

If you are a minor in New York, you do not need your parents’ permission to get birth control, abortion, prenatal care, or other reproductive health services.  


Health care providers generally cannot share medical records or information about reproductive health care services — including abortion, birth control, and testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases — with your partner, parents, guardians, or anyone else without your permission.   

Your employer cannot access personal information about your or your partner’s reproductive-health decisions.  

Insurance coverage  

New York requires Medicaid and all state-regulated private health insurance plans to cover abortions.  

Any state-regulated private health insurance plan that offers maternity coverage must provide coverage for abortion without cost sharing.   

Plans must also provide a 12-month supply of all FDA-approved contraceptives without cost sharing.

Clinic access 

As a patient or staff member accessing or providing reproductive health care, you have the right to be free from violence, threats of force, or physical obstruction.  

These protections apply at any doctor’s office, hospital, or clinic that provides information, referrals, counseling, or medical services about human reproduction. This includes family planning, abortion, and gender-affirming care. Illegal acts can include: 

  • acts of violence, like hitting or shoving
  • written or verbal threats of force
  • physically obstructing facilities, such as blocking doorways or driveways
  • actions that threaten your ability to get care, such as stopping traffic, as you try to enter or leave a facility, or refusing to leave a waiting room


Your employer, or an employer considering hiring you, cannot discriminate against you based on your reproductive health decisions.  In New York, no one can threaten, hurt, or intimidate you, or interfere with your decision because you have an abortion, plan to have an abortion, or use any other reproductive health service. 

  • Many of these facilities promote an unproven “treatment” they call “abortion pill reversal.” Be advised that “abortion pill reversal” has not been accepted by any major medical association, demonstrated safe or effective through clinical trials, or approved by the FDA.”

Beware of  fake “abortion clinics”  

Sometimes called crisis pregnancy centers or limited-service pregnancy centers, these are not abortion clinics. These are places that try to prevent people from having abortions — sometimes even from using contraception. They typically:

  • run ads asking if you are “pregnant, scared, and need help”  
  • make abortion sound very dangerous or inaccurately claim medication abortion can be “reversed”
  • do not offer abortion counseling or referrals, even if they claim to 
  • are often located near or look like real abortion clinics

Most of these facilities are not health care providers and are not subject to the same privacy laws as medical facilities. Many are connected with organizations that oppose abortion, contraception, and education about reproductive health.  

Before doing anything at a facility or sharing any personal information, ask whether abortion services are available. If staff don’t directly answer or give you a vague answer, you may be at a fake abortion facility. 

If you accidentally go to one of these facilities, the staff will likely try to talk you out of having an abortion. You are free to leave. You can find a real abortion provider through the resources listed in this brochure.

Action by other states 

Although abortion is legal in New York, many states have passed laws criminalizing or penalizing abortion within their borders. 

If you are in New York to legally have an abortion, protections include:

  • New York will not return you to another state that wants to arrest you for a legal abortion you had in New York, unless the state claims that you illegally had the abortion outside New York.
  • New York police cannot arrest you or anyone helping you in New York, help another state arrest you, or provide information about your abortion, unless there is a court-issued subpoena or warrant that is unrelated to the effort to penalize you for an abortion you received in New York.
  • If you are prosecuted for having a legal abortion in New York, you can countersue for three times the damages and attorneys’ fees.

These protections apply as long as the care took place in New York, and as long as law enforcement in New York can tell the out-of-state request is about abortion care (which may not be possible). New York cannot protect you for conduct outside the state.


Office of the New York State Attorney General – key contacts 

Phone: 212-899-5567
TDD: 1-800-788-9898