When is it legal?

In Germany, abortion is generally prohibited but remains exempt from punishment in exceptional cases. Only "medical" and "criminological" indications are legal ways to have an abortion in Germany.

According to the federal statistical survey, over 100,000 women decide to terminate their pregnancy through abortion every year in Germany.

In Germany, abortion is possible up to 12 weeks after conception (fertilization) or the 14th week of pregnancy (LMP) - a point in time at which the child's sensation of pain can no longer be ruled out.

For this, the woman must be able to provide evidence of mandatory crisis pregnancy counseling by a state-approved counseling center. The counseling center issues a consultation certificate, which is required by the abortion doctor for an abortion without punishment. There must be at least three days between the issuance of the consultation certificate and the procedure.1

If there is an acute threat to the mother's life or mental health, an abortion can be performed in Germany and is possible until the onset of labor. An example of a danger to the mother's life would be an ectopic pregnancy. Typical psychological burdens for the mother are disabilities of the child.

The majority of the nearly 4,000 abortions performed according to medical indications are due to a Down syndrome (trisomy 21) diagnosis of the child. However, there may also be even more harmless complications such as the easily operable "cleft lip and palate" or more serious cases such as trisomy 18 or 13.

About 650 abortions occur every year in Germany after the 24th week of pregnancy - so-called late-term abortions2. A time at which the child would already be viable outside the womb.

Suppose the pregnancy has resulted from rape or other sexual abuse in Germany. In that case, there is the possibility of a penalty-free abortion up to 12 weeks after conception (fertilization) or the 14th week of pregnancy (LMP)1.

Every year there are around 15 to 30 abortions in Germany according to this regulation2.