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Scotland Act 1998


In Scotland the law relating to abortion, both civil and criminal, is mostly common law, with the exception of the Abortion Act 1967 (as amended).  At common law in Scotland it is a crime to procure or attempt to procure an abortion.  Certain exceptions or defences were provided by the common law but these are now superseded by the 1967 Act which sets out the circumstances in which it is lawful, for the purposes of the law relating to abortion, to carry out an abortion.  The 1967 Act introduces in effect a similar regime for the whole of Great Britain.

The 1967 Act also makes provision for the approval of places where terminations of pregnancies may lawfully be carried out and for the making of regulations to require certification and notification of doctors opinions before a termination is carried out.

Attempts have been made to seek civil law remedies in Scotland to prevent abortions being carried out under the 1967 Act but these were unsuccessful.

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