Family Law Prof Blog

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

Monday, September 30, 2019

Connecticut Man Develops App to Help Sexual Assault Victims

From govtech.com:

Ryan Soscia, a 25-year-old former Stonington, Conn., resident has created an Internet application called JDOE, which enables victims of sexual assault to report their abuser anonymously and be connected with a law firm that could potentially represent them in a lawsuit. The application also enables the identification of repeat sexual offenders.

"We're currently working with over 30 law firms to date in various states around the country," Soscia said by phone from Washington, D.C., last week. "I think we've helped to identify 65 repeat offenders to date."

Read more here .

 

September 30, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Abortion Law Cases Stack Up in Supreme Court's 2019- 2020 Term

 

From Bloomberg

Abortion cases are coming to the U.S. Supreme Court, and they’re only getting harder for the justices to avoid.

The court next week starts a new term that will give the clearest indication yet of how eager the justices are to roll back the right to end a pregnancy. Rulings on major cases could come next June in the heat of the presidential campaign.

Abortion opponents are likely to get a more receptive audience now that Justice Brett Kavanaugh has replaced the retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. The eventual goal is to overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling, which legalized the procedure nationwide.

Read more here 

September 30, 2019 in Abortion | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, September 29, 2019

What To Know About The Family Separation Status At The U.S. Border

From TIME:

Attorneys working on the ground along the southern U.S. border estimate nearly 1,000 children have been separated from their parents since the practice was declared over by the Trump Administration in June 2018. Court records show that family separation has become increasingly complex as thousands of children’s reunification now depend on factors including when they were separated, where their parents are now, and if they are considered plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit against the Trump Administration.

Read more here

September 29, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Thousands Of Abandoned Medical Records Found In Deceased Indiana Doctor's Abortion Clinics

From CNN:

First, authorities discovered a spine-chilling 2,246 fetal remains in the Illinois garage of an abortion doctor after his death. Then, investigators found "thousands" of abandoned medical records across his abortion clinics in Indiana, the Indiana attorney general announced on Friday.

Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill called Dr. Ulrich Klopfer one "of the more notorious abortionists in the history of Indiana."
The doctor had "a record of deplorable conditions and violations of regulatory controls that are placed on these clinics," Hill said. "He certainly was problematic in life and as it turns out continues to present problems in his death."
 
Read more here
 

September 28, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, September 27, 2019

As Abortion Restrictions Increase, Women Partake In "Self-Induced" Abortions

From NPR:

When Arlen found out she was pregnant this year, she was still finishing college and knew she didn't want a child.

There's a clinic near her home, but Arlen faced other obstacles to getting an abortion.

"I started researching about prices, and I was like, 'Well, I don't have $500,' " said Arlen, who is in her 20s and lives in El Paso, Texas. We're not using her full name to protect her privacy.

"So I was like, 'OK, there's gotta be other ways.' "

Her research led her to information about self-induced abortion using pills.

Read more here

September 27, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Australian Prime Minister Claims Family Law System Drove Men To Violence

From Australian Broadcasting Corporation News:

Video has emerged of One Nation Senator Malcolm Roberts saying the family law system sometimes left men in custody disputes with no option but to leave the system or "hurt the other person".

 

In a Facebook live video from March last year, Mr Roberts said "there's no excuse for violence" but claimed the family law system was responsible for driving men to lash out.

Read more here

 

September 26, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Doctors Trained In Spotting Child Abuse Could DestroyFamilies

From NBC News:

A panicked voice jolted Ann Marie Timmerman awake around 3 a.m. 

“There’s something wrong with Tristan.”

Her husband, Tim, stood over her, wide-eyed, holding their 4-month-old boy. Tim had been sitting up with the baby in another room, letting his nursing wife catch up on sleep. Now the infant was limp in his arms, pupils rolling back in his head.

My baby's dying, Ann Marie thought as she jumped out of bed that night more than three years ago. No time for an ambulance.

Read more here

September 25, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Australian Child Advocacy Organization Urges Prime Minister To Remember Child Interests In Reexamination Of Family Law System

From The Sector: 

Early Childhood Australia (ECA) have issued a statement urging Prime Minister Scott Morrison to ensure that the safety and wellbeing of children is at the heart of the Australian Parliament’s inquiry into the family law system. 

While the proposed Terms of Reference for the inquiry note that the Joint Select Committee will be asked to consider ‘the impacts of family law proceedings on the health, safety and wellbeing of children and families involved in those proceedings’, ECA CEO Samantha Page said this sole mention of children’s wellbeing is “almost overwhelmed” by other points of focus. 

Read more here.

September 24, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Equal Pay in Emmy Speech

From Naomi Cahn (GW), writing for Forbes:

When Michelle Williams accepted a 2019 Emmy for best actress in a limited series or TV movie for her role as the Broadway dancer and actress Gwen Verdon in FX’s “Fosse/Verdon,” she started with the normal thank yous, and ended with the gender wage gap:

 "The next time a woman — and especially a woman of color, because she stands to make 52 cents on the dollar compared to her white, male counterpart — tells you what she needs in order to do her job, listen to her. Believe her."

As Williams well knows from personal experience, there is a substantial pay gap in Hollywood, and, in 2018, only one female actor – Scarlett Johansson — appeared on the list of the top 10 highest earning actors.  

In fact, the top 10 women actors earned – together – about a quarter of what the top 10 male actors earned. And, as Williams’s acceptance speech points out, that gap goes well beyond Hollywood. The U.S. Women’s Soccer team, which won the World Cup earlier this year,  is scheduled for a trial on its gender pay gap lawsuit next May.  The U.S. Women’s players earn 38 cents on each dollar paid to men’s players.  

Read more here.

September 24, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, September 23, 2019

LGBTQ+ Couples Fight For Parental Rights In IVF Debates

From Spectrum News:

Four years into their marriage, Chantelle and Courtney Graham expanded their family from two to three.

    • Courtney’s egg was fertilized
    • Chantelle carried baby to term
    • Courtney had to legally adopt baby

Through a process called reciprocal in vitro fertilization (IVF), Courtney’s fertilized egg was placed in Chantelle, who carried their baby Maiori to term.

Read more here

September 23, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Married LGBTQ Couples Fight to Protect Their Parental Rights in IVF Cases

From Spectrum News

Four years into their marriage, Chantelle and Courtney Graham expanded their family from two to three.

    • Courtney’s egg was fertilized
    • Chantelle carried baby to term
    • Courtney had to legally adopt baby

Through a process called reciprocal in vitro fertilization (IVF), Courtney’s fertilized egg was placed in Chantelle, who carried their baby Maiori to term.

“So Chantelle birthed Maiori, and Maiori has my genetics," said Courtney Graham. "So that's what reciprocal IVF does is it allows you to, in our situation, for Chantelle to have this, you know, birthing connection with Maiori, but also be my genetic child. So that's like, kind of where we have the best of both worlds for sure.”

Read more here

September 21, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Child Abuse Law Signed in New York Long after Diocese's Adoption

From The Tablet

Fourteen years after the Diocese of Brooklyn began to offer programs in parishes and schools to prevent sexual abuse of minors, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed “Erin’s Law” on Aug. 29, requiring public schools in New York state to have a similar program.

Public schools will be required to provide at least one hour of instruction every school year to children in kindergarten through eighth grade about what constitutes abuse and how to report it. The law, which was passed by both the New York state senate and assembly in June, is named after Erin Merryn, a sexual abuse survivor turned advocate.

The diocese has been offering such programs since 2005 through Child Lures Prevention for children and Virtus for adults. Nationally, the training has been taking place in Catholic schools and faith formation programs since after the country’s bishops adopted the “Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People” in 2002.

Read more here

September 19, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

McClain: '‘Male Chauvinism’ Is Under Attack from All Sides at Present': Roberts v. United States Jaycees, Sex Discrimination, and the First Amendment

Linda C. McClain (Boston University) has recently posted to SSRN her article '‘Male Chauvinism’ Is Under Attack from All Sides at Present': Roberts v. United States Jaycees, Sex Discrimination, and the First Amendment, Fordham Law Review Vol. 87 , p. 2395 (2019).  Here is the abstract:

Today, many take it for granted that discriminating against women in the marketplace is illegal and morally wrong. Roberts v. United States Jaycees (1984) remains a foundational case on government’s compelling interest in prohibiting sex (or gender) discrimination in public accommodations, even in the face of First Amendment claims of freedom of association and expression. Curiously, Jaycees seems comparatively neglected by legal scholars, if measured by the cases included in the various collections of “law stories” or “rewritten opinions” projects. Looking back at the Jaycees litigation reveals the parties wrestling over the reach of public accommodations law and the force of the race discrimination-sex discrimination analogy. The parties and their amici invoked NAACP v. Alabama (1957), a significant root of the constitutional right to freedom of association, in strikingly different ways, and strenuously disagreed about how to compare the Jaycees to the NAACP. How did the parties frame the evident conflict between promoting sex (or gender) equality—women’s full participation in society—and protecting freedom of association? What was at stake for women in being excluded from full membership in organizations, like the Jaycees and all-male private clubs, that provided members an entree to the “Old Boys Network”? What was at stake for the Jaycees and similar organizations in a climate in which (as one amicus put it) “‘male chauvinism’ is under attack from all sides”? In Jaycees, even as the Supreme Court elaborated upon the values advanced by the First Amendment’s protection of freedom of association, it upheld the application of Minnesota’s public accommodations law to the Jaycees’s exclusion of women from regular membership despite the Jaycees’s freedom of speech and association claims. Both aspects of Jaycees live on, as was evident in arguments made in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission that related sexual orientation discrimination to other forms of “invidious” discrimination that government may prohibit. This article argues that the relationship between freedom of association and gender equality is double-edged. It concludes by returning to the present day, asking whether the Old Boys Network is simply a relic of the past or has continuing potency. It reflects on some present-day controversies over freedom of association and single-sex organizations.

September 19, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

New Scottish Bill Will 'Strengthen Children's Rights' in Family Law Court Cases

From The Scotsman

The Children (Scotland) Bill was revealed just hours before the First Minister unveils her Programme for Government, which is expected to include 14 new pieces of legislation.According to the government, the new legislation will aim to "ensure that children’s best interests are at the centre of every family law case and that children’s views are heard by the court".The Bill has been announced a year after the government launched a review on Part 1 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995. A total of 550 consultation responses were received, including 300 to the child friendly questionnaire.

Read more here.

September 18, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Thousands Sign Petition to Change Custody Law in Ohio

From: News 5 Cleveland
           Momentum continues to build for a change in Ohio's child custody law that now grants next-of-kin first preference in child custody no matter how long a child has been living in a stable foster home.

Elyria foster mother Camille Myers-Kouris has started a petition drive in support of drafting a new Ohio law that would limit blood relative first preference to just six months, and then after that, all potential caregivers would be considered on a level playing field.

 

Read more here

September 17, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

UMKC Seeks Family Law Professor

The University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law is seeking to hire for an assistant or associate tenure track position in Family Law and related fields, which will begin in Fall 2020. A J.D. or equivalent degree is required.  Previous teaching experience is strongly preferred. Applications must come through the UMKC Human Resources portal at https://info.umkc.edu/hr/careers/academic-positions/

UMKC hosts a nationally-recognized Child & Family Law program, notable for its breadth and depth.  The School of Law offers both J.D. and LL.M. students an emphasis in Child & Family Law, maintains two in-house clinics devoted exclusively to family law (one of which provides graduates state certification to practice as Guardians ad Litem) as well as numerous field placement opportunities, publishes a national family law journal (the Journal of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers), and provides an international study abroad program focused exclusively on family law. Additional information about the family law program can be found at http://umkclaw.link/familylawcourses.

UMKC is the urban law school of the University of Missouri System and is located on a beautifully landscaped campus in the Country Club Plaza area of Kansas City, Missouri. It is the only law school in a diverse and vibrant metropolitan area of more than two million people and offers courses leading to J.D. or LL.M. degrees for approximately 450 students. It benefits from its metropolitan location, a university with opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration, a dedicated faculty and staff, and strong community and alumni support.

Equal Opportunity is and shall be provided for all employees and applicants for employment on the basis of their demonstrated ability and competence without unlawful discrimination on the basis of their race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, disability, protected veteran status, or any other status protected by applicable state or federal law. This policy shall not be interpreted in such a manner as to violate the legal rights of religious organizations or the recruiting rights of military organizations associated with the Armed Forces or the Department of Homeland Security of the United States. For more information, call the Vice Chancellor - Human Resources at 816-235-1621.   Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the duties and functions of this job. If you believe you may have difficulty performing any of the duties or functions of this job, please contact the Office of Affirmative Action at (816) 235-1323.

September 17, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, September 16, 2019

Divorced Dad Targets California's Alimony Law

Source: L.A. Times

A Huntington Beach man is taking another shot at reforming California’s alimony law, this time by championing a ballot initiative that would restrict payments to former spouses to a maximum of five years following a divorce or legal separation.

Steve Clark, a software engineer and divorced father, said this week that, had he known 25 years ago there was a possibility he would have to pay alimony — also known as spousal support — for the rest of his life, he wouldn’t have gotten married. He said he pays his ex-wife, Cindy, $1,000 a month and is expected to do so for the rest of his life because of a judge’s orders.

 

Read more here

September 16, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Cahn's Review of Book

Below is a link to Prof. Naomi Cahn's book review of "Rosanna Hertz and Margaret K. Nelson, Random Families: Genetic Strangers, Sperm Donor Siblings, and the Creation of New Kin." 

https://rdcu.be/bQ4mo

September 16, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, September 15, 2019

American Woman's Divorce Battle In Saudi Arabia Is Illustrative Of The Country's Legal System

From INSIDER: 

A US nurse involved in a tortuous legal battle in Saudi Arabia, in which she claims authorities have consistently discriminated against her because she is a foreign woman, shows how the legal system can be a minefield for foreign women.

Teresa Malof, 51, says she has been mistreated in her attempts to divorce her ex-husband Mazen al-Mubarak, the father to her three children. As a result, she says, she paid for their marital home for years while he lived in it alone.

Read more here

September 15, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Activists See Failure In European Attempts At Battling Domestic Violence

From VOA:

The stories are haunting: A young woman beaten by her partner before being set on fire in front of her 7-year-old daughter. A photo of a smiling scientist whose body is stuffed into a suitcase that is dumped into a river. 
 
These are just two examples in France of so-called femicides — women killed by their partners or family members. The country's 101st case this year happened Sunday, when a 92-year-old woman was beaten to death by her husband. 

Read more here

September 14, 2019 | Permalink | Comments (0)