Family Law Prof Blog

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

Friday, October 26, 2018

IVF Kids May Suffer From High Blood Pressure

From Business Standard:

Turns out, kids born through fertilization may be more likely to develop

A research published in the Journal of the found a higher average blood pressure among teens born through IVF than in children conceived naturally.

For the study, researchers compared 54 teens conceived through IVF with 43 of their friends who had been conceived naturally. The teens' average age was 17.

In adults, a blood pressure above 120/80 is considered high. But in children and adolescents, a normal blood pressure depends on age and height. If a youngster has a higher blood pressure than 90 percent to 95 percent of other males or females his or her age and height, then the child may have high blood pressure.

Read more here.

October 26, 2018 in Alternative Reproduction | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Protecting Kids in Divorce Mediation

From Lawyers.com:

Going through a divorce can be an emotional time for all parties. When children are involved in the divorce, there can be special challenges. Many divorcing couples share the primary goal of protecting their children from additional stress during this time. For this reason, divorcing parents often choose the mediation process over a traditionally litigated divorce.

Mediation can be less stressful on children for several reasons. Most mediations are held at neutral locations, not in courthouses, which can reduce the level of anxiety, should a child need to appear. The divorce mediator will be specially trained to help both sides with fair negotiations and required compromises.

Mediation often reduces the combative nature of divorce, by allowing the parties to focus on the children’s interests over their own. When engaging in the mediation process, parents can follow a few simple rules to help their children during this difficult period. Many courts in Maryland require mediation as part of the divorce process. Many people choose to hire a mediator outside of the court system, prior to a court filing. Both can be very helpful.

Read more here.

October 25, 2018 in Divorce (grounds), Mediation | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

India Supreme Court Decriminalizes Adultery

From NPR:

India's Supreme Court has struck down a colonial-era law that made adultery illegal, calling it arbitrary and saying it is unconstitutional because it "treats a husband as the master."

Section 497 of the Indian Penal Code makes it a crime for a man to have intercourse with another man's wife "without the consent or connivance of that man."

The law gives a husband exclusive right to prosecute his wife's lover — and does not grant a wife power to do the same. It does not penalize the woman, nor any married man who has sex with an unmarried woman.

Read more here.

October 24, 2018 in Current Affairs, International | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Why Prince Harry and Meghan Won't Have Full Custody

From Country Living:

Juggling the complicated protocol of the royal family is always going to be difficult. As Meghan Markle has learned since she first began dating Prince Harry, there’s rules and expectations for all aspects of life. But if you thought that the leg crossing and wardrobe choices were confusing enough, just wait until you hear how things work when it comes to having children-especially now that Meghan Markle is expecting their first child next spring.

According to reports, the royal family operates with a strange custody agreement when its couples have their own children, which states that, actually, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has full legal custody over the young royals. Royal expert Marlene Koenig explained to news outlets: “The sovereign has legal custody of the minor grandchildren.”

Confused? It’s a seriously backdated regulation, as Koenig continued: “This goes back to King George I [who ruled in the early 1700s], and the law’s never been changed. He did it because he had a very poor relationship with his son, the future King George II, so they had this law passed that meant the King was the guardian of his grandchildren.”

Read more here.

 

October 23, 2018 in Current Affairs, Custody (parenting plans), International | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, October 22, 2018

Catholic Church Sex Abuse in Pennsylvania

From Time.com:

The U.S. Justice Department has opened an investigation of child sexual abuse inside the Roman Catholic Church in Pennsylvania, using subpoenas to demand confidential files and testimony from church leaders, according to two people familiar with the probe.

The subpoenas, served last week, follow a scathing state grand jury report over the summer that found that 301 “predator priests” in Pennsylvania had molested more than 1,000 children over several decades and that church leaders had covered up for the offenders.

Now federal prosecutors are bringing the Justice Department’s resources to bear, according to two people who were not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

Read more here.

October 22, 2018 in Child Abuse, Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Proposed narrow definition of 'Gender' threatens Transgender people.

From The New York Times:

The Trump administration is considering narrowly defining gender as a biological, immutable condition determined by genitalia at birth, the most drastic move yet in a government wide effort to roll back recognition and protections of transgender people under federal civil rights law.

A series of decisions by the Obama administration loosened the legal concept of gender in federal programs, including in education and health care, recognizing gender largely as an individual’s choice and not determined by the sex assigned at birth. The policy prompted fights over bathrooms, dormitories, single-sex programs and other arenas where gender was once seen as a simple concept. Conservatives, especially evangelical Christians, were incensed.

Now the Department of Health and Human Services is spearheading an effort to establish a legal definition of sex under Title IX, the federal civil rights law that bans gender discrimination in education programs that receive government financial assistance, according to a memo obtained by The New York Times.

Read more here

October 21, 2018 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, October 19, 2018

Exploitation of Non-molestation Order!

From The Guardian:

The number of non-molestation orders – issued by courts to prevent domestic abuse – has rocketed by 37% over the past five years because they are being exploited to secure legal aid, according to the charity Families Needs Fathers.

The “weaponisation” of court procedures by “angry and vengeful parents” is encouraging false allegations and fuelling conflict between separating couples, the head of the organisation has claimed.

The figures are based on the latest quarterly statistics produced by the Ministry of Justice. Since 2013, when the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (Laspo) came into force the number of non-molestation orders issued by English and Welsh courts has increased from fewer than 20,000 to more than 26,000 a year.

Read more here

October 19, 2018 in Domestic Violence, International | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Child Abduction

From The Guardian:

Three men and a woman have been accused of helping parents abduct their own children across Australia in contravention of family law orders.

Detectives say as part of a two-year investigation 10 missing children have been located with a parent who had abducted them.

“Five of these are believed to be linked to this group of people,” federal police assistant commissioner Debbie Platz said in a statement on Thursday.

Read more here

October 18, 2018 in Current Affairs, Custody (parenting plans), International, Resources - Children & the Law | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Forced to choose between Family and Freedom!

From the Guardian:

United Nations body has taken the “extraordinary” step of calling on Australia to review its domestic laws in a ruling that it had breached multiple international human rights laws.

The ruling coincides with the Australian government being taken to the UN over alleged breaches of international law by indefinitely separating more than 60 members of 14 refugee families on Nauru.

The working group on arbitrary detention, established by the UN Commission on Human Rights in 1991 to report to the Human Rights Council, had examined the case of Edris Cheragi, an Iranian man and Christian convert who sought asylum in Australia.

Read more here

October 17, 2018 in International, Marriage (impediments), Resources - Civil Rights & Family Rights | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

UK Supreme court rules on right of unmarried mother to Widow's allowance

From The Guardian:

Denying the unmarried mother of four children a widowed parent’s allowance is illegal, the supreme court has ruled, in a decision that significantly extends the rights of unmarried couples.

By a majority of four to one, the court’s justices declared the government’s refusal to pay up to £117 a week in benefits breached the family’s human rights. It will put pressure on ministers to consider making urgent changes to the law.

The judgment follows a hearing earlier this year in Belfast where the court was told that withholding the allowance from Siobhan McLaughlin amounted to discrimination against all children born out of wedlock.

Read more here

 

October 16, 2018 in Cohabitation (live-ins), Current Affairs, International | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, October 15, 2018

Criminal Conviction for failure to pay Spousal and Child maintenance

From Times Live:

A top Durban businessman on Monday began serving an effective four and half years' prison sentence after being criminally convicted of failing to pay spousal and child maintenance.

Krugersdorp magistrate Abdul Khan also attached his assets‚ the sale of which will enable his ex-wife to recover the more than R1-million she is owed.

Legal experts said this was one of the toughest sentences they have heard of for a criminal contravention of the Maintenance Act - which are usually handled through alternative dispute resolution.

 

Read more here

October 15, 2018 in Child Support Enforcement, International, Maintenance (alimony) | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Romania's Top Court Rules LGBTQ Couples Have Same Family Rights As Heterosexual Couples

From HuffPost:

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Romania’s top court has ruled that gay couples should have the same family rights as heterosexuals, a judgment that comes before a national referendum seeking to ban same-sex marriage.

The Constitutional Court ruled that same-sex couples had the same rights to a private and family life as heterosexuals and should “benefit from.... legal and juridical recognition of their rights and obligations.”

The Oct. 6-7 referendum is seeking to limit the constitutional definition of family to heterosexual, married couples.

Read more here. 

October 14, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Call For Royal Commission Scrutiny In Australian Family Law System

From ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation):

A royal commission into family law should be considered if reforms currently underway do not address serious failings in the system, according to the outgoing Chief Justice of the Family Court.

Chief Justice John Pascoe has told the National Family Law Conference in Brisbane family law had become increasingly complex.

Earlier this year, Attorney-General Christian Porter announced plans to merge the Family Court and the Federal Circuit Court, promising it would ease the significant delays and costs for people stuck in the system.

Read more here

October 13, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, October 12, 2018

California Divorce Courts Now Treat Pet Custody The Same As Child Custody

From Inquisitr:

Recently, a bill was signed by the Governor of California which granted judges the authority to settle pet custody disagreements similarly to the way that they handle child custody disputes. The law may be the first of its kind, revealing a lot about how the role of the family pet has changed over time.

According to Snopes, Governor Jerry Brown signed the bill. The law will take effect on January 1, 2019. Prior to the bill’s signing, pets were treated as property — likened to material goods such as TV’s or other inanimate objects — in California divorce courts. Now, however, judges will have to decide upon the ownership of a pet in the same way as they do when determining the custody of a child.

Read more here

October 12, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Singapore Holds Monthly Talks To Guide Couples Through Divorce

From The Straits Times:

People contemplating divorce or going through one will be able to get practical guidance by attending public talks conducted by lawyers.

Titled About Family Justice: Divorce In Singapore - What You Need To Know, the talks cover the divorce process and procedure, as well as provide information on the help services available to litigants at various stages.

The talks were developed by the Family Justice Courts in collaboration with the Law Society Pro Bono Services (LSPBS), Community Justice Centre and Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS).

Read more here

October 11, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

India Passes Ambiguous Muslim Divorce Regulation Bill

From Saudi Gazette: 

AT last, the government of India has enacted the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill without any amendments whatsoever to the draft. As the bill was not cleared by the Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Indian parliament, the government took the route of presidential ordinance to implement the bill despite the fact that the ordinance and hence the regulatory effect will lapse in six months since it will not be cleared by the Rajya Sabha by then.

Moreover, an ordinance is a constitutionally sanctioned ad hoc mechanism by which critically urgent situations are met when Parliament or a State Assembly is not in session and the government cannot afford to wait until it reassembles for fear of things becoming unmanageable if not legislatively redressed immediately.

Read more here

October 10, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Federal And State Adoption Laws Conflict In Immigration Case

From USA Today:

Time and legal options are running out for a Kansas couple desperately trying to keep their adopted daughter from being deported back to South Korea on a legal technicality involving adoption and immigration law.

Hyebin Schreiber was brought to the U.S. by her would-be adoptive parents in 2012 when she was 15. In Kansas, the cutoff date to complete legal adoption is 18. Hyebin was 17 when the adoption became final in December 2014.

The family didn't realize, however, that under federal rules she had to be adopted by the age of 16 to be granted citizenship. The  family's delay was understandable – Hyebin's dad, Lt. Col. Patrick Schreiber, spent much of 2013 and 2014 serving in Afghanistan. 

Read more here

October 9, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, October 8, 2018

Indiana Couple Want New Custody Legislation

From The Indiana Gazette:

A Rayne Township couple’s plight is at the heart of a public education program kicked off in Harrisburg this week by state Sen. Don White, R-Indiana.

Calvin and Bobbie Farren appeared with White and representatives of the Pennsylvania Bar Association Tuesday at the state Capitol as PBA launched a campaign called “Understanding When Grandparents and Others Can Seek Custody,” based in part on White’s Act 21 of 2018.

“Too many lives have been tragically cut short by the opioid epidemic that is ravaging communities across the state and their children end up becoming caught up in the turmoil that ensues,” White said.

The Farrens’ daughter died in 2012 and her husband died in 2015, leaving behind a daughter, now 13, and a son, now 6, who are in the custody of the girlfriend of the Farrens’ late son-in-law.

“We were unable to establish standing so we were unable to pursue custody,” Bobbie Farren told those gathered at the Capitol during a gathering televised by Pennsylvania Cable Network.

Read more here.

October 8, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Poverty and Domestic Violence

From ABC Australia:

There's a simple reason Lynette stayed with her abusive partner for five long years: she had no other choice.

"I didn't have the financial means to leave," the mother of two young children said.

Lynette had no money of her own to fall back on and, with no job to rely on, had no income.

She also could not rely on assistance from the Government.

"I tried to leave about six times, but the problem was, when I went in to Centrelink, it takes six to eight weeks for payment to come through."

Read more here.

October 7, 2018 in Domestic Violence, International | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Canada's 'Use-It-Or-Lose-It' Parental Leave Comes Three Months Early

From iPolitics:

Soon-to-be-parents will be able to access extra weeks of leave three months earlier than expected.

This year’s federal budget announced additional weeks of “use-it-or-lose-it” leave for non-birthing parents.

The federal government initially set June 2019 as the start date — but now the Liberals say parents can become eligible for the extra weeks in mid-March.

Only parents whose children are born or adopted after March 17 will be able to take advantage of the additional weeks.

Read more here.

October 6, 2018 in Current Affairs, International, Paternity | Permalink | Comments (0)