On June 24, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court abandoned nearly 50 years of precedent when it overturned Roe v. Wade and eliminated the constitutional right to abortion. The ruling, which came in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, cleared the way for states to ban abortion entirely.
Without federal protections for abortion access, the Center for Reproductive Rights has filed numerous lawsuits to block or delay state abortion bans from taking effect. The bans—previously unenforceable under Roe–include “pre-Roe” bans that were passed before 1973 but never repealed, “trigger” laws designed to outlaw abortion automatically if the Supreme Court overturned Roe, and recent bans passed in anticipation of the Court’s decision in Dobbs. The Center has also challenged other laws severely restricting abortion, including laws that courts previously struck down as unconstitutional under Roe.
The effect of the Supreme Court’s ruling “has been swift and severe, with abortion services stopping immediately in many states,” said Nancy Northup, President and CEO of the Center. “We are seeing the start of a public health crisis that will engulf the nation. Our immediate priority is to preserve access in every state for as long as we can. Every day and hour that a clinic can stay open is a victory for the patients in the waiting room.”
Click on the links below or in the left-hand column for details on the cases the Center and its partners have filed challenging these state abortion bans:
For more information about abortion rights on the state level, explore these Center resources:
- “After Roe Fell: Abortion Laws by State”—An interactive map that provides real-time analysis of abortion laws and policies in each state.
- “State Constitutions and Abortion Rights: Building protections for reproductive autonomy”—This report examines how state constitutions can offer stronger and expanded legal grounds for protecting abortion rights.
- “State Court Abortion Litigation Tracker”—Created by the Center and the Brennan Center for Justice, this tool aggregates state court litigation against abortion bans that were, or would have been, unconstitutional under Roe.