Category Archives: Family Law

Samantha Godwin, ‘Children’s Capacities and Paternalism’

ABSTRACT Paternalism is widely viewed as presumptively justifiable for children but morally problematic for adults. The standard explanation for this distinction is that children lack capacities relevant to the justifiability of paternalism. I argue that this explanation is more difficult to defend than typically assumed. If paternalism is often justified when needed to keep children […]

Hanoch Dagan, ‘Spousal Contracts and Choice Theory’

ABSTRACT Contract is one of the key tools liberal law employs in the service of its core mission of enhancing people’s autonomy, and choice theory conceptualizes this task as contract’s telos. It thus prescribes three principles – proactive facilitation, regard for the future self, and relational justice – for guiding the legal constitution of contract […]

Courtney Joslin, ‘Family Choices’

ABSTRACT Non-marital partners in the US generally have no legal obligations to each other unless they agree to take them on. There is lively scholarly debate about the continued vitality of this approach. A number of legal scholars criticize the current approach to inter se economic rights of former non-marital partners. A different group of […]

Cahn and Carbone, ‘Blackstonian Marriage, Gender, and Cohabitation’

ABSTRACT In Blumenthal v Brewer, the Illinois Supreme Court held that it would not enforce an alleged agreement between a nonmarital couple that centered on their relationship. The National Center for Lesbian Rights argued that the court’s holding punished people who entered into a nonmarital relationship. Nancy Polikoff found the opinion ‘shocking’. Albertina Antognini suggests […]

Douglas and Gilmore, ‘The (Il)legitimacy of Guideline Judgments in Family Law: The Case for Foundational Principles’

INTRODUCTION In this paper, we interrogate the legitimate bounds of the judicial development of family law in England and Wales. Reflecting the nature of much of family law, our focus is on judicial engagement with statutes, within which a major concentration of the work of the family law judges is guiding and supervising statutorily conferred […]

Nishat Hyder-Rahman, ‘Consent and the Protection of the Deceased’s Interests in Posthumous Reproduction’

ABSTRACT The phenomenon of posthumous reproduction (PR) is challenging traditional notions of family structure, composition and chronology; at the same time, it is posing a novel challenge to the discourse on posthumous harms and interests in terms of the deceased’s reproductive narrative. To some extent, these fundamental challenges are reflected in the jurisprudence on PR […]

Kaiponanea Matsumura, ‘Beyond Property: The Other Legal Consequences of Informal Relationships’

ABSTRACT To this point, scholars analyzing nonmarital relationships have primarily focused on the challenge of determining the economic consequences of cohabitation. Yet property distribution, while significant, is only one piece of a much larger puzzle. Married people qualify for a wide range of benefits from the government as well as private employers. These benefits, such […]

‘How the Law Expects and Accommodates Deceit in Courtship, Sex, and Marriage’

“This post turns to a new aspect of the legal history of intimate deception. When I started researching Intimate Lies and the Law, I suspected that judges might deny remedies to deceived intimates because they thought deception within intimacy was too trivial a subject to be worth judicial attention. However, I soon discovered that many […]

Alistair MacDonald, ‘Family Law – Past and Future’

“… What has however, undergone fundamental change over the past twenty five years is the nature and scope of the problems to which these stable legal principles must be applied in order to try to achieve resolution for children and families. This is a function of the central role played by family law in the […]

Read and Stevens, ‘The Intersection of Divorce and Tort Law in Utah’

ABSTRACT In the world of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, texts, emails and other social media, electronic information is a reservoir of evidence that may trouble a litigant in a divorce action. Not only will this evidence serve to substantiate claims in a divorce action, the evidence may support a separate tort action. Utah law bar joinder […]