Family Law Quarterly
Volume 51, No. 2 & 3 (Summer/Fall 2017)
Please note that pursuant to the ABA's copyright and reprint policies, these articles may not be disseminated without written permission.
Summer 2017, Vol. 51, No. 2
Readying for the Future of Family Law
Editor’s Note - Summer/Fall 2017
Introduction - Future Shock, or Readying for the Future of Family Law
Withstanding Disruptive Innovation: How Attorneys Will Adapt and Survive Impending Challenges from Automation and Nontraditional Legal Services Providers
Samuel V. Schoonmaker IV
Solo and small firm practitioners stand on the precipice of transformative disruption. A convergence of technological advances, “access to justice” failings, budgetary challenges, court burdens, demographic dilemmas, perceived opportunities, and “nontraditional legal services providers” threaten the legal profession. The demise of lawyers is forecast. This article challenges that fatalistic perspective but also explains why the pace of automation is accelerating, how the roles of legal startups and nonlawyers are evolving, and why court initiatives will compel practitioners to automate.
Child Custody Innovations for Family Lawyers: The Future Is Now
Linda S. Smith, Ph.D. & Eric Frazer, Psy.D.
Family law is at a profession-changing crossroad. If family lawyers continue to resist technological change, they will substantially increase the possibility of displacement by disruptive technology and more affordable, innovative, legal service delivery models. This article describes how family lawyers can embrace technology’s positive changes and use augmenting technologies to support a multidisciplinary approach, particularly in the area of child custody.
The Sky Is Not Falling: Lessons and Recommendations from Ten Years of Reinstating Parental Rights
Meredith L. Schalick
In 2005, California enacted the first statutory provision to reinstate or restore parental rights in cases in which a child welfare agency had not yet achieved adoption or other permanency goals. Eighteen states followed suit. This article discusses experiences with reinstatement and concludes that the concerns about its impact are likely unfounded. It discusses proposed amendments to reinstatement statutes and provides recommendations for legislative next-steps in this area of child welfare law.
Structuring Tax Dependency Post-Divorce for Noncustodial Parents
Thomas M. Spade & Linda J. Bradley-Mckee
Which parent, post-divorce, will reap the tax benefits of having dependent children? For post-1985 divorce agreements, the custodial parent enjoys all the tax benefits unless he or she unconditionally agrees to release certain benefits to the noncustodial parent. This article explains the tax benefits grantable to the noncustodial spouse, the requirements for recognition of the agreement, when execution of IRS Form 8332 is required, and how to use the form for successful compliance with court orders.
Ten Things Practitioners Should Know About the Hague Convention of 23 November 2007 on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance
In the United States, international child support cases will proceed under UIFSA (2008). The Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support, however, is informative, and the United States is bound to fulfill its obligations under the treaty. There are several features of the Convention, incorporated into domestic substantive law in UIFSA (2008) Article 7, that practitioners and judges will find to be new. This article explores these provisions, explains their importance for purposes of the Convention, and suggest clarifications of potentially ambiguous language.
Fall 2017, Vol. 51, No. 3
Becoming Adults: How Law and Policy Treat Coming of Age
Introduction: Fall 2017
Health Care at a Price: The Impact on Young Adults’ Medical Privacy and Autonomy of Being Covered on Their Parents’ Health Insurance Until Age Twenty-Six
Valarie K. Blake & Jessica A. Haught
The ACA’s “Age 26 Provision,” which covers some young adults up to age twenty-six on family health plans, has inadvertently altered healthcare privacy expectations. While it has reduced uninsured rates, it comes at a price: it reveals young adults’ healthcare choices to parents. This article discusses how the Provision falls short in protecting privacy and undermines young people’s autonomy. It calls for further research to monitor the provision’s impact on privacy and access to sensitive medical care.
Objectively Offensive: The Problem of Applying Title IX to Very Young Students
Amy B. Cyphert
In 2011, Levina Subrata was informed that her son had been suspended for “sexual assault.” She was stunned––he was six years old. During a recess game of tag, he had allegedly touched the upper thigh or groin of another boy. Across the country, very young students—some as young as four years old—have been swept up in a net of well-intentioned, but improperly applied, zero-tolerance policies based on Title IX’s proscriptions against peer-on-peer sexual harassment. This article offers recommendations for how attorneys can advocate for very young clients facing discipline under Title IX.
The Trajectory of Childhood—Bridging Adolescence to Adulthood
This article is based on “Growing Up NYC: A Policy Framework,” a publication that grew out of collaboration among the offices of the New York City mayor and deputy mayor and the twenty-four agencies and mayoral offices forming the NYC Children’s Cabinet. The Cabinet is a multi-agency initiative created by Mayor Bill de Blasio to bolster communication and coordination among city agencies to improve child safety and well-being. The article describes the “guiding principles” that evolved from this collaboration, as well as the development process and ongoing implementation.
Improving Child Representation: An Overview of the Field and Recommendations for Improvement
Children’s Justice: How to Improve Legal Representation of Children in the Child Welfare System (Donald N. Duquette)
Ann M. Haralambie
In 2009, the U.S. Children’s Bureau funded a seven-year project, the National Quality Improvement Center on the Representation of Children in the Child Welfare System (QIC-ChildRep). Professor Donald N. Duquette, principal investigator and author of the final report and book, provides a broad, well-referenced overview of the field and the QIC Best Practice Model, and he makes recommendations for changes in the child welfare system itself. Children’s Justice is a solid and important contribution to the growth and maturation of children’s representation.