Bill would allow women to sue for damages when a pregnancy is recklessly or intentionally terminated

DENVER - A pregnant woman who miscarries due to the intentional or reckless behavior of others would have a legal right to sue for damages under a bill that passed a voice-vote Friday in the House of Representatives.

Rep. Brittany Petterson, D-Lakewood, and Rep. Mike Foote, D-Lafayette, sponsored the bill. Petterson said that it "is a reasonable solution to a rare but very real problem."

This particular problem occurs when a person endangers a pregnant woman and unlawfully terminates her pregnancy.

The bill, HB14-1388, further develops a 2013 law that created a new category of crime, called "unlawful termination of pregnancy."

"For pregnant women who are victims of unlawful conduct that causes them to lose pregnancy, this bill provides a specific, statutory, civil remedy where there is none today," Petterson said. "A woman who loses her pregnancy in these tragic circumstances deserves a means of civil redress."

Foote noted that the bill provides the remedy while avoiding several contentious issues surrounding terminated pregnancies, including fetal personhood, negligence, wrongful death and medical malpractice.

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