2019 Mississippi Code
Title 41 - Public Health
Chapter 41 - Surgical or Medical Procedures; Consents
Women’s Health Protection and Preborn Pain Act
§ 41-41-149. Severability

Universal Citation: MS Code § 41-41-149 (2019)
  • (1) If some or all of the provisions of Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145 are ever temporarily or permanently restrained or enjoined by judicial order, all other provisions of Mississippi law regulating or restricting abortion shall be enforced as though the restrained or enjoined provisions had not been adopted; however, whenever the temporary or permanent restraining order or injunction is stayed or dissolved, or otherwise ceases to have effect, the provisions shall have full force and effect.

  • (2) Mindful of Leavitt v. Jane L., 518 U.S. 137 (1996), in which in the context of determining the severability of a state statute regulating abortion the United States Supreme Court held that an explicit statement of legislative intent is controlling, it is the intent of the Legislature that every provision, section, subsection, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase or word in Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145, and every application of the provisions in Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145, are severable from each other. If any application of any provision in Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145 to any person, group of persons, or circumstances is found by a court to be invalid, the remaining applications of that provision to all other persons and circumstances shall be severed and may not be affected. All constitutionally valid applications of Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145 shall be severed from any applications that a court finds to be invalid, leaving the valid applications in force, because it is the Legislature’s intent and priority that the valid applications be allowed to stand alone. Even if a reviewing court finds a provision of Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145 to impose an undue burden in a large or substantial fraction of relevant cases, the applications that do not represent an undue burden shall be severed from the remaining provisions and shall remain in force, and shall be treated as if the Legislature had enacted a statute limited to the persons, group of persons, or circumstances for which the statute’s application does not present an undue burden. The Legislature further declares that it would have passed Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145, and each provision, section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase or word, and all constitutional applications of Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145, irrespective of the fact that any provision, section, subsection, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase or word, or applications of Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145, were to be declared unconstitutional or to represent an undue burden.

  • (3) If Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145 are found by any court to be invalid or to impose an undue burden as applied to any person, group of persons, or circumstances, the prohibition shall apply to that person or group of persons or circumstances on the earliest date on which Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145 can be constitutionally applied.

  • (4) If any provisions of Sections 41-41-131 through 41-41-145 is found by any court to be unconstitutionally vague, then the applications of the provision that do not present constitutional vagueness problems shall be severed and remain in force.

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