In other states, including Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Illinois, Nevada, Tennessee, Washington, and West Virginia, a relatively new legal concept called the "mature minor
doctrine" allows unemancipated minors to petition a court for the right to make medical decisions for themselves, although the specifics of these laws vary and sometimes include requirements regarding age or parental availability.
Some states allow for medical procedures if the person is a mature minor
, which means a minor who is mature enough to understand the consequences of a given medical procedure.
"The new law cites the so-called 'mature minor
doctrine' as basis for consent of minors who are pregnant into high-risk behavior," Rep.
not that a "mature minor
" was essentially an adult for medical
Court applied the mature minor
doctrine to determine whether a seventeen
(56) The remaining four states have no explicit law on a minor's ability to obtain contraceptive services, but even where a state has no relevant law, physicians may commonly provide medical care to a mature minor
without parental consent as a matter of practice.
(195) Under the mature minor
doctrine at common law, the court determines, as a matter of fact, whether the minor has sufficient cognitive capacity to consent to medical treatment, taking into consideration factors such as the minor's age, apparent age, evidence of responsible behavior (outside and inside the provider setting), and evidence of reasoned decision making.
Where the situation becomes very gray is in the case of the mature minor
. This category is recognized in some states as an exception to the rules requiring parental consent for medical care (Int.
If C can show she is a mature minor
or an emancipated minor, she can then decide for herself.
Several other states recognize the mature minor
Many countries (including Australia, Fiji and New Zealand in the Asia-Pacific region) apply the concept of the evolving capacities of the child to determine whether a young person under 18 can make health care decisions independently, through what is called the mature minor
principle or "Gillick competency".
without parental consent." (188) Generally, the mature minor