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ERIC Number: EJ945079
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Dec
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0197-6664
Nonmarital Unions, Family Definitions, and Custody Decision Making
Holtzman, Mellisa
Family Relations, v60 n5 p617-632 Dec 2011
Relationships that have not been formalized by marriage but that function like marriage are increasingly common among couples. Many of these relationships involve children who are related to only one of the adults but who have established parent-child relationships with both adults. This raises questions about how best to preserve children's attachment relationships in the event that the adult relationship dissolves. Recent scholarship advocates two distinct approaches: some argue for legal recognition of expansive definitions of the family whereas others advocate for legal recognition of children's rights. This research examines the efficacy of these competing arguments. Findings suggest that judicial recognition of family definitions is not, on its own, enough to protect nonbiological attachments. Instead, family definitions must also be combined with a focus on children's rights. The legal and policy implications of these findings are discussed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A