Can a Catholic Lawyer Represent a Minor Seeking a Judicial Bypass for an Abortion?
St. John's University School of Law
Catholic Lawyer, Vol. 44, No. 2, 2005
In some states, a minor cannot obtain an abortion without first notifying and/or obtaining consent from one or both parents. The Supreme Court has required these states to provide a judicial bypass mechanism in which a minor who fears retribution or who is otherwise unable to satisfy the consent/notification statute, can seek permission from a court instead. The question I present is this: Can a Catholic lawyer represent a minor in such a proceeding? I analyze the problem under canon law, catholic theology, and legal ethics. On balance, I conclude that a Catholic lawyer should not undertake the representation of a minor in a judicial bypass proceeding.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 29
Keywords: abortion, judicial bypass, minor, child, Supreme Court, Catholic, lawyer, theology, canon law
Date posted: April 26, 2005 ; Last revised: August 5, 2008