In exceptional cases, it is only after 24 weeks of pregnancy that it becomes apparent that a child is seriously ill.
It is then possible, under the conditions of strict due diligence, to terminate a pregnancy after 24 weeks, this is called a late termination of pregnancy.

Late termination of pregnancy in the Netherlands consists of 2 categories.

Category 1: a termination in a child who is expected to die during or soon after delivery.
Category 2: a termination in a child with one or more disorders that leads to serious and irreparable functional disorders or because the child is reasonably expected to have a limited chance of survival.

Because a late termination of pregnancy falls under a special regulation (LZA/LP regulation), specific due care requirements must be met by the doctors. It must be clear that your child is seriously ill. Various investigations will then take place. In addition, a second opinion should always be done by a second hospital. This process is an intensive and psychologically taxing process, there will also be guidance from the hospital by a social worker or psychologist. If this is not the case, you can always ask for it.

If all due care requirements can be met, the pregnancy may be terminated after 24 weeks. Your baby will die. Depending on the situation, the doctors will discuss with you whether the baby’s heart will stop before you give birth or whether the baby is likely to die from his condition during labor or shortly after.

Registration of births and deaths

The declaration to the Civil Registry is different than usual. Read the protocol carefully here to avoid long waits and disappointments.

The Law of L.E.F.

Bienvenida Linscheer gave birth to her son Luke in February 2021 after 35 weeks of pregnancy. It was only at 24 weeks that the doctors discovered that Luke would not be able to live a dignified life after his birth. His parents wanted to spare him this and asked about the possibilities. In the Netherlands, it is legally difficult to terminate a pregnancy after 24 weeks. That is why Bienvenida and her husband fled to Belgium, but they would have preferred it to be different. Now Bienvenida is working hard to change the law in the Netherlands in such a way that these parents and their (unborn) children no longer fall between two stools. She has started the page ‘The Law of L.E.F.’ on Facebook and Instagram to share the developments of her struggle and she has her own website.
Bienvenida’s mission has also received a lot of attention in the media:

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