BAIPA Law and Legal Definition

BAIPA is abbreviation for the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act. The BAIPA is a U.S. federal legislation that sought to extend legal protection to an infant born alive after a failed attempt at induced abortion.

Congress placed the rights of infants who survive attempted abortions on its legislative agenda in the form of the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act of 2000, which sought to extend the protection of federal law to all born-alive infants. During legislative hearings, witnesses confirmed the implication of the Farmer decision by presenting evidence those infants born alive after failed abortions went without medical care and subsequently died.

Nonetheless, opponents of the legislation questioned whether the legislation interfered with a woman's right to choose in contravention of Roe and the jurisprudence arising from that decision. Although the proposal passed out of the House of Representatives, the bill failed to gain sufficient support in the Senate. However, the proposal was represented to Congress one year later in the form of the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act of 2001. Citing the Necessary and Proper Clause of the Constitution as the legal basis to enact the statute, the House of Representatives passed the bill by voice vote and the Senate unanimously agreed in mid-2002. President George W. Bush signed the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act (P.L. 107-207, 116 Stat. 926) into law on August 5, 2002.

The BAIPA aims to extend legal rights to infants who are born alive. Therefore, the law does not create new legal rights, but rather specifies to whom those legal rights attach.