Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Heartbreak Hotel

USA Today brings a story that shatters the image of a romantic five star hotel:

Often, hotels are where relationships start. But now, you can end them by "checking into" a luxury Divorce Hotel, PRI's tells us.

We're not talking about a 300-room hotel filled with angry couples.

Instead, the report says, Dutch entrepreneur Jim Halfens has created the "Divorce Hotel" for couples capable of ending their marriage without lawyers during a three-day mediation process.

The process takes place in the luxury hotel of their choice.

They might check into the Hotel Karel the Fifth in Utrecht, which oozes charm and - yes - even romance, the story says. Lawyers aren't invited.


Due to differences in divorce laws, however, he says only Dutch couples can participate although he's working on launching Divorce Hotel in Germany through partners.

Read more here.



September 24, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Very Funny Commercial on (Ideal?) Marriage



September 23, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Divorce in Alzheimer's Cases


Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson stunned "700 Club" viewers Tuesday when he said divorcing a spouse with Alzheimer's disease was justified.


The remarks sparked outrage throughout religious and medical communities.  

"I'm just flabbergasted," said Joel Hunter, senior pastor of the 15,000 member Northland Church in Orlando, Fla. "I just don't know how anyone who is reading Scripture or is even familiar with the traditional wedding vows can come out with a statement like that. Obviously, we can all rationalize the legitimacy for our own comfort that would somehow make it OK to divorce our spouse if circumstances become very different or inconvenient. ... That's almost universal, but there's just no way you can get out of what Jesus says about marriage."

Read more and view a related video here.




September 22, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

SC: Must Live Apart to Receive Support


COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The South Carolina Supreme Court says couples seeking a divorce must live apart in order for one spouse to seek monetary support in the interim.

The justices ruled Monday that a Family Court judge was right to dismiss Eileen Theisen's request for support as she sought a divorce from her husband of 30 years, because the two still lived under the same roof.

Read more here.


September 21, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

CALL FOR AUTHORS: Cultural Sociology of Divorce: An Encyclopedia

We are inviting academic editorial contributors to Cultural Sociology of Divorce: An Encyclopedia, a 3-volume library reference to be published in 2013 by SAGE Publications.
While the formal definition of divorce may be fairly concise and straightforward (the legal termination of a marital union, dissolving the bonds of matrimony between parties), the effects are anything but, particularly when children and other family members are involved. The Americans for Divorce Reform estimates that “probably, 40 or possibly even 50 percent of marriages will end in divorce if current trends continue." And outside the United States, there are markedly increased divorce rates across developed countries—divorce and its effects are a significant social factor in our culture and others. In fact, it might be said that a whole “divorce industry” has been constructed, with divorce lawyers and mediators, family counselors, support groups, etc. As King Henry VIII’s divorces showed, divorce has not always been easy or accepted. In some countries, divorce is not permitted and even in Europe, countries such as Spain, Italy, Portugal, and the Republic of Ireland only legalized divorce in the latter quarter of the twentieth century. This multi-disciplinary encyclopedia covers curricular subjects around the world ranging from marriage and the family to anthropology, social and legal history, family law, developmental and clinical psychology, and religion.  Three volumes, comprised of over 500 articles, illuminate what has become a culture of divorce and its impact on society.
This comprehensive project will be marketed to academic and public libraries as a print and digital product available to students via the library’s electronic services.  We are now making assignments with a deadline for submissions of November 17, 2011.
Each article, ranging from 900 to 4000 words, is signed by the contributor. The General Editor of the encyclopedia is Robert E. Emery, Ph.D., University of Virginia, who will review all the articles for editorial content and academic consistency.
If you are interested in contributing to the encyclopedia, it can be a notable publication addition to your CV/resume and broaden your publishing credits. Payment for the articles are honoraria that range from a $50 book credit from Sage Publications for article submissions up to 1,000 words up to a free copy of the encyclopedia for contributions totaling greater than 10,000 words. More than this, your involvement can help assure that credible and detailed data, descriptions, and analysis are available to students of divorce issues.
The complete list of available articles (Excel file) submission guidelines, and sample article are prepared and will be sent to you in response to your inquiry. Please then select which unassigned articles may best suit your interests and expertise.  (A shorter list of available entries related to divorce law only follows below).
If you would like to contribute to building a truly outstanding reference with Cultural Sociology of Divorce: An Encyclopedia, please contact me by the e-mail information below. Please provide a brief summary of your background in divorce issues. Thanks for your time and interest.
Lisbeth Rogers
Author Manager
Golson Media<>
Abandonment/Desertion (2000)
Absolute Divorce (1200)
Alexander, Paul W. (Judge) (1500)
Child Custody vs. Child Support (1700)
Child Support, Government Enforcement of (2000)
Childless Divorce (1400)
Custody, Joint Legal and Physical Child (2500)
Custody, Sole Legal and Physical Child (2200)
Debt, Division of (2500)
Divorce Law and Shorter vs. Longer Term Marriages (1750)
Divorce Law-Comparative Perspective (3000)
Divorce Law-United States (4000)
Divorce Negotiations, Legal Tactics in (2000)
Grounds for Divorce (overview) (4000)
Grounds for Divorce, US History of Legal (3000)
Informal Divorce (1200)
International Divorce (1750)
Irreconcilable Differences (1800)
Judges, Family Law (2000)
Lawyers, Divorce (3000)
Mental Cruelty (2500)
Pre-Nuptial Agreements (1500)
Pro Se Divorce (1200)
Property Distribution (3000)
Property Division Law, U.S. History of (2500)
Property, Marital (2200)
Separation, Legal (2000)
Separation, Trial (2000)
Shared/Joint Custody of Children (2500)
Simplified Divorce (2500)
Step-Parent’s Child Custody Legal Rights (after a second divorce) (1500)
Summary/Simple Divorce (2000)
Uncontested Divorce vs. Contested Divorce (2500)


September 20, 2011 in Scholarship, Family Law | Permalink | Comments (3)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Call for Papers: Wells Conference on Adoption Law

8th Annual Wells
Conference on Adoption Law
March 8, 2012
Capital University Law School
Columbus, Ohio

The conference is seeking proposals for presentations and papers
emphasizing the following themes:

Facilitating Adoptions through the Internet
Suggested topics include, but are not limited to: using the internet to
facilitate adoptions, the legal barriers to using the internet to facilitate
adoptions, and the ethical implications of using the internet to facilitate

Changes in Search and Reunion Activities through the Internet and
Social Media
Suggested topics include, but are not limited to: the psychological and
attachment implications of search and reunion activities through the
internet and social media, whether regulation of search and reunion
situations facilitated through the internet is desirable, and the role of

Legal Implications of Technology’s Impact on Evolving “Family”
Suggested topics include, but are not limited to: how the law responds
to advances in technology, whether the law can keep up with changes in
technology, and issues with children who have not been adopted.
Participants are asked to lead a forty-minute discussion on one of the
above topics. Each topic will have three panel members who will give a
presentation, followed by a discussion at the end. In addition, participants
are requested to prepare an article associated with their presentation for
publication in the Capital University Law Review next year. The article
would be due on August 1, 2012.

Please send proposals by Oct. 1, 2011,
to Capital University Law Review
Symposium Editor Christine Diedrick
Mochel (


September 19, 2011 in Scholarship, Family Law | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Australia May Toughen Child Abduction Laws

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

TOUGH laws to stop parents abducting and taking their children overseas are being considered by the federal government.

The Family Law Council has told the Attorney-General, Robert McClelland, new criminal charges need to be created to punish parents.

''The [existing] legislation does not cover the situation where a parent takes a child overseas with the other parent's consent or in accordance with a court order, but subsequently retains the child overseas beyond the agreed or authorised period,'' said the council chairwoman, Associate Professor Helen Rhoades.

It also ''does not cover the situation where children are taken overseas without the other parent's consent and no parenting orders have been sought from, or granted by, the courts. The question that arises is whether a parent's behaviour in either or both of these circumstances should be criminalised.''

About 125 children are taken out of Australia each year, says the Attorney-General's Department. In 2007, 147 were abducted overseas and in 2008 it was 138.The number fell to 95 in 2009 but rose to 125 last year. Under the Family Law Act, international parental child abduction carries a maximum three-year jail sentence.

Read more here.



September 19, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)