Family Law Prof Blog

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

Friday, November 9, 2018

Brazil's New Sexual Harassment Law

From Huffington Post:

A woman is sexually harassed every 20 hours on São Paulo’s sprawling public transit system, according to a HuffPost Brazil analysis, despite a new law in Brazil aimed at curbing the pervasive problem.

More than 80 percent of women in Brazil have been harassed in public spaces, according to a 2016 YouGov survey. Perpetrators historically rarely faced more than a fine, experts say, but can now be sentenced to up to five years in prison thanks to a law that took effect in September.

The Sexual Harassment Law was passed earlier this year amid an uproar over the arrest and swift release of a man who ejaculated on a fellow bus passenger. The crime was considered a misdemeanor.

Read more here

November 9, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie Custody battle headed to Private trial

From USA Today:

The dragging-on divorce and custody battle between Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie is set to go to a trial next month because they  can't agree about the future of their six children despite two years of lawyering and leaking.

And if Pitt and Jolie have their way, it will all happen behind closed doors. If it happens at all.

The couple could still reach an agreement out of court and put the messy breakup of their family behind them but lately their ability to see eye-to-eye seems to have deserted them.

Still, a source familiar with the situation but not authorized to speak publicly said both sides "are still working together to find an out-of-court settlement.”

Read more here

November 8, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Ethiopia moves towards Gender Equality as it appoints its first female president

From CNN News:

Ethiopia's parliament has appointed the country's first female president, Sahle-Work Zewde, in a move hailed as setting a new standard for women in the East African nation, the Prime Minister's chief of staff announced Thursday.

Sahle-Work, 69, has served since June as the United Nation's special representative to the African Union as an under-secretary-general. She also has held top diplomatic posts representing Ethiopia in France and Djibouti.
Sahle-Work replaces Mulatu Teshome, who resigned the presidency Wednesday.
Read more here

November 7, 2018 in International | Permalink | Comments (0)

Call for Papers

The Canadian Journal of Family Law is seeking submissions for Vol. 32(1), due for publication in spring 2019. The Journal invites the submission of articles, commentaries and book reviews pertaining to all aspects of family law from members of the legal, social science, psychological, medical, political science and other disciplines. All submissions are reviewed by qualified external readers.

Manuscripts intended for publication should be typewritten, double spaced, either in English or in French. The Journal would prefer submissions by e-mail using Word for Windows format. Quotations should be distinguished from the text by single spacing. Articles, ideally, should not exceed forty typewritten pages - 8,000 to 10,000 words and follow the Canadian Guide to Uniform Legal Citation. If the article is a long one or contains complex material, the use of subheadings to break up the text is encouraged.

Please send manuscripts and/or questions to

November 7, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Britain's Supreme Court ruling on Bakery's refusal to bake Gay-marriage cake


From The New York Times:

Britain’s Supreme Court supported on Wednesday the right of a Belfast bakery to refuse to bake a cake with a message supporting same-sex marriage, finding that its Christian owners could not be compelled to reproduce a message contrary to their beliefs.

Although the person who requested the cake was gay, a five-judge panel found that the bakery owners’ refusal was based not on his sexual orientation, but on their Protestant faith’s opposition to gay marriage.

“There was no discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation,” said the judgment, which overturned the rulings of two lower courts.

Read more here

November 6, 2018 in Current Affairs, International, Marriage (impediments) | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, November 5, 2018

Frozen embryo storage tank failure shatters family dreams

From CNN News:

When Kate and Jeremy Plants were making plans for their 2014 marriage, they had no idea the future they would face. Just months after they tied the knot, Kate was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, a deadly form that the American Cancer Society says takes more lives than any other female reproductive cancer.

Because treatment could affect Kate's fertility, doctors encouraged the newlyweds to consider banking Kate's embryos so they could have children someday.
"So every other day for two weeks, we drove 45 minutes each way to the doctor," Kate recalled. "There were shots in stomach multiple times a day; I was high on hormones; it was very stressful. And the whole time, I don't know if the cancer is spreading, and I'm thinking, 'Do I have time for this?' "
Read more here

November 5, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Living Together Prior to Marriage Linked to Divorce?

From The Atlantic:

Late last month, the Journal of Marriage and Family published a new study with a somewhat foreboding finding: Couples who lived together before marriage had a lower divorce rate in their first year of marriage, but had a higher divorce rate after five years. It supported earlier research linking premarital cohabitation to increased risk of divorce.

But just two weeks later, the Council on Contemporary Families—a nonprofit group at the University of Texas at Austin—published a report that came to the exact opposite conclusion: Premarital cohabitation seemed to make couples lesslikely to divorce. From the 1950s through 1970, “those who were willing to transgress strong social norms to cohabit … were also more likely to transgress similar social norms about divorce,” wrote the author, Arielle Kuperberg, a sociology professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. But as the rate of premarital cohabitation ballooned to some 70 percent, “its association with divorce faded. In fact, since 2000, premarital cohabitation has actually been associated with a lower rate of divorce, once factors such as religiosity, education, and age at co-residence are accounted for.”'

Read more here

November 4, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Sex Abuse Conviction Not Valid Reason to Reduce Child Support Payments for Canadian Grandfather

From CBC News:

A conviction for sexually abusing your granddaughter is not an acceptable reason to reduce your monthly child support payments, a B.C. judge has ruled.

In a disturbing case recently heard in Port Coquitlam's provincial court, Judge Thomas Woods said a local father had no one but himself to blame for his trouble finding work after he was convicted of sexual interference involving his young granddaughter.

 On the one hand, the man didn't try very hard to find new work so that he could keep up with his child support, the judge said. On the other, a criminal conviction does not justify reducing those payments.
Read more here.

November 3, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, November 2, 2018

Over 200 Migrant Children Remain in Federal Custody

From NPR:

NPR's Ailsa Chang talks with Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project, about how many migrant children remain separated from their parents, and the reasons why.


All right, now an update on the migrant children who were separated from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border. Two hundred forty-five children remain in federal custody. That's according to government data analyzed by the American Civil Liberties Union. The ACLU has been tracking these children, and it was the ACLU's lawsuit against the Trump administration that led to a federal court order to reunite these families.

We are joined now by ACLU attorney Lee Gelernt. Welcome.

Read more here

November 2, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Japanese Child Custody Laws Disfavor Foreign Divorced Parents

From Japan Today:

Emmanuel, Stephane, Henrik and James come from very different backgrounds, but they share the same painful experience of battling Japan's legal system -- in vain -- for access to their children after divorce.

Once married to Japanese women, they say they were prevented from contact with their children when their relationships disintegrated, sometimes even after court rulings in their favor.

Tough laws and patriarchal cultural norms that overwhelmingly see mothers granted sole custody after a divorce -- 80 percent of the time, according to official figures -- mean that fathers rarely see their children again.

Read more here

November 1, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)