LOUISVILLE (KT) – A lawsuit defending abortion access in Kentucky is advancing in Western District Court with a preliminary injunction hearing set for Monday, May 2. A federal judge ordered the hearing on Tuesday.
At the epicenter of the lawsuit is House Bill 3, a sweeping pro-life law that introduced new regulations for medical abortion pills and the disposal of fetal remains, updated the judicial bypass procedure for minors seeking abortions and changed abortion reporting requirements. The measure passed in the General Assembly after overriding Governor Andy Beshear’s veto two weeks ago.
U.S. District Judge Rebecca Grady Jennings granted the abortion provider’s request for a temporary restraining order against the law last week, blocking enforcement of HB 3 for no more than 14 days starting April 21, absent other legal action.
That action will come 3 days before the TRO expires.
At the hearing, both sides will be expected to “explain in detail and designate by section and line the provisions of House Bill 3 they believe can and cannot be complied with before the rules are promulgated and the forms are created by the Cabinet (for Health and Family Services),” according to court filings.
Under HB 3, the Cabinet has 60 days to create the necessary forms; that window closes on June 13.
EMW Women’s Surgical Center and Dr. Ernest Marshall, a physician who provides abortions at the clinic, also filed an expedited motion to intervene on Monday. If granted, both parties could join the lawsuit as plaintiffs.
The preliminary injunction hearing will convene in Louisville at 10 a.m. on May 2.