A 17-year-old Florida girl has won her legal appeal to seek an abortion after a doctor would not talk to her about the option without parental consent.
In the Sunshine State, a person under 18 must notify at least one parent 48 hours before an abortion and get consent — or a judge can excuse them from the requirement, according to USA Today.
The Tampa teen — identified in court documents as Jane Doe — said she knew her parents would not give their OK so she applied for the exemption to allow her to get information about the medical abortion pill, Fox 13 reported.
She “testified that she has talked to her mother about birth control but that her mother lives out of state,” according to the petition filed in the District Court of Appeal of Florida challenging the order that previously dismissed her petition for judicial waiver.
The high-school junior “lives with her father, who does not believe in abortion except in cases of rape. She believes that both of her parents would urge her to keep the baby if they found out that she wanted an abortion,” according to the filing.
She also “testified that she wants an abortion because she is not financially stable” enough to raise a child even though she has been working in the past year.
But her petition was denied when the court found her intelligence was “less than average” after she claimed she was making Bs, when her grade-point average was a 2.0.
“Clearly, a ‘B’ average would not equate to a 2.0 GPA. Petitioner’s testimony evinces either a lack of intelligence or credibility, either of which weigh against a finding of maturity pursuant to the statute,” the document states.
In the appeal, her lawyer, Rinky Parwani, argued that a 2.0 GPA was average and demonstrated the appropriate level of intelligence. He also told the court that his client wants to enlist in the military before going to college to study nursing.
The judge granted the appeal, writing that the girl’s “testimony demonstrates that she possesses an ability to assess the consequences of her choice and the risk it entails, as well as the intention to reassess her decision after consultation with her physician.”
The teen told the court that she will gather information on abortion and that if she goes through with it, her boyfriend will drive her to the clinic and his mother will pay for it.
“Any young teenage girl who is pregnant is already going through a huge emotional burden,” Parwani told Fox 13. “What is really fundamental in this decision is the court understood that she had resources available to her to make the right decision.”