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Review Of Fathers Under Fire: The Revolution In Child Support Enforcement, By Irwin Garfinkel, Sara S. Mclanahan, Daniel R. Meyer, And Judith A. Seltzer, Ryan E. Spohn Mar 2006

Review Of Fathers Under Fire: The Revolution In Child Support Enforcement, By Irwin Garfinkel, Sara S. Mclanahan, Daniel R. Meyer, And Judith A. Seltzer, Ryan E. Spohn

Criminology and Criminal Justice Faculty Publications

The title of this book adequately reflects its timely focus on nonresidential fathers facing increased child support enforcement, examining how child support contributions (or failure to meet child support obligations) affect the lives of children as well as the fathers themselves. As the authors suggest, nonresident fathers have generally been treated as financial resources, with little attention paid to their rights as parents or their needs as providers for their children. A particular focus of this collection of studies is the role of indigent nonresident fathers and their role as parents and providers. Consequently, the scope of study adopted by ...


Bringing Up Baby: Adoption, Marriage, And The Best Interests Of The Child, Robin Fretwell Wilson, W. Bradford Wilcox Feb 2006

Bringing Up Baby: Adoption, Marriage, And The Best Interests Of The Child, Robin Fretwell Wilson, W. Bradford Wilcox

Faculty Scholarship

In the piece, Professor Brad Wilcox and I ask who should care for children when their biological parents cannot? This is a question of potentially explosive dimensions under new definitions of legal parentage proposed in this volume of the WILLIAM & MARY BILL OF RIGHTS JOURNAL. This question is also important today for evaluating state adoption laws. A significant number of states bar consideration of a prospective adopter’s marital or non-marital status. We believe these laws miss an important opportunity to maximize the best interests of each child being placed. In this piece, we take an exclusively child-centered approach, drawing on an enormous body of social science on family structure and child well-being. We begin with a critical look at the studies showing that children are significantly more likely to thrive if they are raised in a home headed by two married parents. Here, the social science is clear: on average, children do best in a married home, compared to the alternatives, and for this reason adoption laws and regulations should clearly favor married parents. The social science is less clear on the advantage that a single parent might have compared to cohabiting parents; here, we think the science suggests that a single parent might offer more stability and safety to a child than a cohabiting couple. We then propose model legislation to institute these preferences. We endorse a strong preference that gives first consideration to married couples and a weak preference to single parents compared to cohabiting couples. We also consider and reject ...


Protecting Children By Preserving Parenthood, Jane C. Murphy Feb 2006

Protecting Children By Preserving Parenthood, Jane C. Murphy

All Faculty Scholarship

Establishing legal parentage, once a relatively straightforward matter of marriage and biology, has become increasingly complex. The determination of legal status as mother may now involve several women making claims based on genetic contribution, contract, status as gestational carrier or other bases. The debate about the best choice for children when adults are competing for parental status is ongoing, lively and filled with many voices. Less attention has been paid to a much larger, second category of cases - cases in which the law is faced with resolving the legal status of the one adult who may be available to serve ...


Foster Children Paying For Foster Care, Daniel L. Hatcher Feb 2006

Foster Children Paying For Foster Care, Daniel L. Hatcher

All Faculty Scholarship

This Article examines the legality and policy concerns of state foster care agencies using children's Social Security benefits as a state funding stream. The practice requires foster children who are disabled or have deceased or disabled parents to pay for their own care. Often with the assistance of private consultants under contingency fee contracts, agencies look for children who are eligible for Social Security benefits and interject themselves as the children's representative payees. Rather than using the benefits to serve the children's unmet needs, the agencies use their fiduciary power to access the children's benefits and ...


But I Didn't Do Anything Wrong: Revisiting The Rights Of Non-Offending Parents In Child Protection Proceedings, Vivek Sankaran Jan 2006

But I Didn't Do Anything Wrong: Revisiting The Rights Of Non-Offending Parents In Child Protection Proceedings, Vivek Sankaran

Articles

Steven, a minor living with his mother, enjoyed a nurturing relationship with his father, Mark. He saw his father every weekend and looked forward to their time together. Mark looked for ways in which to stay involved in his child's life. Two days ago, the Department of Human Services (DHS) removed Steven from his mother's custody because, unbeknown to Mark, Stevens mother was selling drugs in the home. At the time of removal, the police did not inquire about the whereabouts of Stevens father; DHS immediately placed Steven in a foster home.


Addressing Putative Fathers In Child Protection Proceedings: Is 'John Doe' Still Alive?, Frank E. Vandervort, W. Lansat Jan 2006

Addressing Putative Fathers In Child Protection Proceedings: Is 'John Doe' Still Alive?, Frank E. Vandervort, W. Lansat

Articles

In practice, it seems, KH is not widely understood. Child protection petitions for temporary custody continue to name multiple men as the "father" of a child when there is a legal father. Some courts insist on terminating the parental rights of "John Doe" when no man has established paternity. After KH, are such actions necessary? Are they permissible?


Perpetuating The Impermanence Of Foster Children: A Critical Analysis Of Efforts To Reform The Interstate Compact On The Placement Of Children, Vivek Sankaran Jan 2006

Perpetuating The Impermanence Of Foster Children: A Critical Analysis Of Efforts To Reform The Interstate Compact On The Placement Of Children, Vivek Sankaran

Articles

The importance of expediting the placement of foster children into permanent homes has emerged as a dominant theme in child welfare policy. Identifying and finalizing legally secure placements provides children with psychological stability and a sense of belonging, and limits the likelihood of future disruptions of familial relationships. Upon a child's entry into foster care, child welfare agencies, under both federal and state laws, are compelled to develop a detailed plan to ensure a child's prompt placement into such a home. If a parent is unable to rectify the conditions causing the child's placement in foster care ...


A Truancy Court Program To Keep Students In School, Barbara A. Babb Jan 2006

A Truancy Court Program To Keep Students In School, Barbara A. Babb

All Faculty Scholarship

Under Maryland law, "[e]ach person who has legal custody or care and control of a child who is 5 years old or older and under 16 shall see that the child attends school..." MD. Education Code Ann. Sect. 7-301 (c) 2006. The law also provides penalties for violations, as the legal custodian or caregiver "who fails to see that the child attends school...is guilty of a misdemeanor," which could result in fines of $50 to $100 per day of unlawful absence and/or imprisonment for 10 to 30 days, depending on whether the conviction is a first or ...


Standing In Babylon, Looking Toward Zion, Katherine R. Kruse Jan 2006

Standing In Babylon, Looking Toward Zion, Katherine R. Kruse

Scholarly Works

This article defends the triumph of vision at the 2006 UNLV Conference on Representing Children in Families by examining the interrelationship between idealism and realism in the definition of lawyers' roles and the importance of idealized visions to the process of reforming dysfunctional systems. This article suggests that the vision of lawyering for children sketched in the UNLV Recommendations--though based in idealism--is both deeply realistic and ultimately practical. This article thus affirms the choice of the group of idealists who stood together for a few days in modern-day Babylon to keep their eyes trained on the vision of Zion as ...


Out Of State And Out Of Luck: The Treatment Of Non-Custodial Parents Under The Interstate Compact On The Placement Of Children, Vivek Sankaran Jan 2006

Out Of State And Out Of Luck: The Treatment Of Non-Custodial Parents Under The Interstate Compact On The Placement Of Children, Vivek Sankaran

Articles

Courts handling child abuse and neglect cases face a daunting task. Within one to three days after a child is removed from his home, a court hearing must be held to determine whether court intervention and continued removal of the child is necessary. At this hearing, the court must sort through and evaluate the state's allegations and assess the various risks posed by placing the child in foster care or returning the child to one or both of his parents. Courts must weigh the heavy emphasis the law places on preserving the family unit against the equally paramount mandate ...