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NY Penal Law § 125.50: Self-abortion in the second degree

While abortion is generally legal in New York, under certain circumstances it is not. An "abortional act" is defined as an action that is intended to cause a miscarriage. An abortion can be a physical act performed upon a pregnant woman as well as the taking of medication to induce a miscarriage. In order to be charged with performing an unlawful abortion, it is not necessary that you have performed the abortion on another person. If you unlawfully perform the abortion on yourself you can be charged with a self-abortion offense. Under New York Penal Law § 125.50 you could be prosecuted for self-abortion in the second degree if you commit an abortion on yourself that is not justifiable. A self-abortion is justifiable if:

  1. A duly licensed physician has informed you that it is necessary to save your life, or
  2. You are no more than 24 weeks pregnant.
Related Offenses
  1. Abortion in the second degree: New York Penal Law § 125.40
  2. Abortion in the first degree: New York Penal Law § 125.45
  3. Self-abortion in the first degree: New York Penal Law § 125.55

In order for you to be convicted of self-abortion in the second degree, you must have intended to cause a miscarriage. If you did not realize your actions would cause you to miscarry, then you may be able to successfully defend a charge of self-abortion in the second degree.


Because self-abortion in the second degree is a class B misdemeanor, if you are convicted you could be sentenced to up to 90 days in jail. The judge also has to the option to sentencing you to a probation term of 1 year as well as ordering you to pay a fine.

New York Penal Law § 125.50: Self-abortion in the second degree

A female is guilty of self-abortion in the second degree when, being pregnant, she commits or submits to an abortional act upon herself, unless such abortional act is justifiable pursuant to subdivision three of § 125.05.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

Even though self-abortion in the second degree is a misdemeanor and not a felony, it is still critical that you have experienced representation. If you are convicted you could go to jail for up to 3 months and face a fine. Furthermore, you will end up with a criminal record. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience successfully defending clients in New York criminal courts who have been charged with vehicular manslaughter, manslaughter, conspiracy, murder and other serious crimes. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of crimes in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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