New Jersey's medically assisted suicide law put on hold

Posted: Updated:

A New Jersey judge has put a temporary hold on a new law allowing terminally ill patients to seek life-ending drugs.

Judge Paul Innes of Superior Court in Mercer County signed the temporary order Wednesday blocking the law and set a hearing for October.

The suit seeking to block the law was brought by Dr. Yosef Glassman. The suit argues the law violates constitutional rights as well as common law barring suicide.

Gov. Phil Murphy signed the bill in April, making New Jersey the seventh state allowing the practice. Maine enacted a similar law in June, becoming the eighth.

RELATED: Terminally ill patients can end their own life under new law 

New Jersey's law went into effect earlier this month.

Murphy said at an unrelated event Thursday that he will fight the suit, and the attorney general will put out guidance.

“This was really a hard one for me, particularly growing up as a Catholic. This was not an easy one to get to, but I got convinced that it shouldn’t be the law that dictates how things end, but it should be you and your loved ones,” Murphy said.

The governor said that the law has various safeguards in place to make sure a patient doesn’t make the decision to end their life on a whim.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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