SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — Biological dads in Utah will be required to pay half of a woman’s out-of-pocket pregnancy costs under a new law. This is strictly in the state of Utah for now, at least.
The bill’s sponsor has presented the measure as an effort to decrease the weight of pregnancy on women and is an attempt to put more responsibility on the men who help conceive the children.
There are critics who make the argument that this new legislation won’t help the women who are most vulnerable, and t chat it could in fact make abusive situations even more dangerous and be further negative impact on pregnant women in these situations.
Utah looks to be the first state to mandate prenatal child support, according to the state’s Planned Parenthood association and the bill’s sponsor.
There are multiple states, that include both Wisconsin and New York, that have unique triggers, which can in turn have fathers being financially responsible for some or all pre-birth expenses.
Gov. Spencer Cox, a Republican, recently signed the proposal, which received widespread support in the GOP-controlled Legislature. The bill would apply to a pregnant woman’s health insurance premiums and any pregnancy-related medical costs, Brammer said.
If the paternity of the child is under dispute or unclear, the father won’t be have to pay until paternity is established. The father also wouldn’t be financially culpable for the cost of an abortion without his consent, unless it’s essential in order to prevent the death of the mother, or if the pregnancy the product of rape.
This law could setting an early precedent. Many states are bound to look into it, to better assist the mother's who are dealing with being a single mother before the pregnancy has even concluded.