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Getting To Equal: Resolving The Judicial Impasse On The Weight Of Non-Monetary Contribution In Kenya's Marital Asset Division, Benedeta Prudence Mutiso Jan 2019

Getting To Equal: Resolving The Judicial Impasse On The Weight Of Non-Monetary Contribution In Kenya's Marital Asset Division, Benedeta Prudence Mutiso

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Marital property law reforms and changing international human rights standards in the late 20th and early 21st century prompted Kenya to end certain discriminatory practices against women, especially in the area of property rights. For 50 years, Kenya relied on England’s century-old law, the Married Women’s Property Act of 1882, to regulate property rights. In 2010, Kenya adopted a new Constitution that called for equality between men and women, and in 2013, Kenya enacted independent legislation in the form of the Matrimonial Property Act (MPA). The MPA provides a basis for trial courts to divide marital property upon ...


The Strange Pairing: Building Alliances Between Queer Activists And Conservative Groups To Recognize New Families, Nausica Palazzo Jan 2018

The Strange Pairing: Building Alliances Between Queer Activists And Conservative Groups To Recognize New Families, Nausica Palazzo

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article explores some of the legal initiatives and reforms that opponents of same-sex marriage in Canada and the United States have pushed forward. Despite being animated by a desire to dilute the protections for same-sex couples, these reforms resulted in “queering” family law, in the sense that they functionalized the notion of family. Consequently, two cohabiting relatives or friends would be eligible for legal recognition, along with all the public and private benefits of such recognition. I term these kinds of “unions” and other nonnormative relationships to be “new families.”

The central claim of this Article is thus that ...


Marriage Is On The Decline And Cohabitation Is On The Rise: At What Point, If Ever, Should Unmarried Partners Acquire Marital Rights?, Lawrence W. Waggoner Jun 2016

Marriage Is On The Decline And Cohabitation Is On The Rise: At What Point, If Ever, Should Unmarried Partners Acquire Marital Rights?, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

This article draws attention to the cultural shift in the formation of families that has been and is taking place in this country: Marriage is on the decline and cohabitation is on the rise. Part II documents this cultural shift by using recent government data to trace the decline of marriage and the rise of cohabitation. Between 2000 and 2010, the population grew by 9.71%, but the husband-and-wife households only grew by 3.7%, while the unmarried-couple households grew by 41.4%. Because of the Supreme Court's decidion in Obergefell v. Hodges, marriage is now universally available to ...


The Incest Horrible: Delimiting The Lawrence V. Texas Right To Sexual Autonomy, Y. Carson Zhou Jan 2016

The Incest Horrible: Delimiting The Lawrence V. Texas Right To Sexual Autonomy, Y. Carson Zhou

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Is the criminalization of consensual sex between close relatives constitutional in the wake of Lawrence v. Texas and Obergefell v. Hodges? Justice Scalia thought not. The substantive due process landscape has changed dramatically in response to the LGBTQ movement. Yet, when a girl in a sexual relationship with her father recently revealed in an anonymous interview with New York Magazine that they were planning to move to New Jersey, one of the only two states where incest was legal, the New Jersey legislature introduced with unprecedented speed a bill criminalizing incest. But who has the couple harmed? The very mention ...


The Return Of Coverture, Allison Anna Tait Jan 2016

The Return Of Coverture, Allison Anna Tait

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Once, the notion that husbands and wives were equal partners in marriage seemed outlandish and unnatural. Today, the marriage narrative has been reversed and the prevailing attitude is that marriage has become an increasingly equitable institution. This is the story that Justice Kennedy told in Obergefell v. Hodges, in which he described marriage as an evolving institution that has adapted in response to social change such that discriminatory marriage rules no longer apply. Coverture exemplifies this change: marriage used to be deeply shaped by coverture rules and now it is not. While celebrating the demise of coverture, however, the substantive ...


With Marriage On The Decline And Cohabitation On The Rise, What About Marital Rights For Unmarried Partners?, Lawrence W. Waggoner Oct 2015

With Marriage On The Decline And Cohabitation On The Rise, What About Marital Rights For Unmarried Partners?, Lawrence W. Waggoner

Articles

This article draws attention to a cultural shift in the formation of families that has been and is taking place in this country and in the developed world. Part I uses recent government data to trace the decline of marriage and the rise of cohabitation in the United States. Between 2000 and 2010, the population grew by 9.71 %, but the husband and wife households only grew by 3.7%, while the unmarried couple households grew by 41.4%. A counter-intuitive finding is that the early 21st century data show little correlation between the marriage rate and economic conditions. Because ...


Certiorari And The Marriage Equality Cases, Carl Tobias Jan 2015

Certiorari And The Marriage Equality Cases, Carl Tobias

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform Caveat

Marriage equality has come to much of the nation. Over 2014, many district court rulings invalidated state proscriptions on same- sex marriage, while four appeals courts upheld these decisions. However, the Sixth Circuit reversed district judgments which struck down bans in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee. Because that appellate opinion created a patchwork of differing legal regimes across the country, this Paper urges the Supreme Court to clarify marriage equality by reviewing that determination this Term.


A Postcolonial Theory Of Spousal Rape: The Carribean And Beyond, Stacy-Ann Elvy Jan 2015

A Postcolonial Theory Of Spousal Rape: The Carribean And Beyond, Stacy-Ann Elvy

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Many postcolonial states in the Caribbean continue to struggle to comply with their international treaty obligations to protect women from sexual violence. Reports from various United Nations programs, including UNICEF, and the annual U.S. State Department Country Reports on Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Jamaica, and Saint Lucia (“Commonwealth Countries”), indicate that sexual violence against women, including spousal abuse, is a significant problem in the Caribbean. Despite ratification of various international instruments intended to eliminate sexual violence against women, such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, Commonwealth Countries have retained ...


For Nontraditional Names' Sake: A Call To Reform The Name-Change Process For Marrying Couples, Meegan Brooks Sep 2013

For Nontraditional Names' Sake: A Call To Reform The Name-Change Process For Marrying Couples, Meegan Brooks

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

In a large number of states, women are encouraged to take their husbands’ surnames at marriage by being offered an expedited name-change process that is shorter, less expensive, and less invasive than the statutory process that men must complete. If a couple instead decides to take an altogether-new name at marriage, the vast majority of states require that each spouse complete the longer statutory process. This name-change system emerged from a long history of naming as a way for men to dominate women. This Note emphasizes the need for name-change reform, arguing that the current system perpetuates antiquated patriarchal values ...


Family History: Inside And Out, Kerry Abrams Apr 2013

Family History: Inside And Out, Kerry Abrams

Michigan Law Review

The twenty-first century has seen the dawn of a new era of the family, an era that has its roots in the twentieth. Many of the social and scientific phenomena of our time - same-sex couples, in vitro fertilization, single-parent families, international adoption - have inspired changes in the law. Legal change has encompassed both constitutional doctrine and statutory innovations, from landmark Supreme Court decisions articulating a right to procreate (or not), a liberty interest in the care, custody, and control of one's children, and even a right to marry, to state no-fault divorce statutes that have fundamentally changed the way ...


Black Marriage, White People, Red Herrings, Melissa Murray Apr 2013

Black Marriage, White People, Red Herrings, Melissa Murray

Michigan Law Review

Ralph Richard Banks's Is Marriage for White People? is worlds away from Agatha Christie's novels. Decidedly a work of nonfiction, Banks's book considers the plight of middle-class African Americans who, according to statistics, are the least likely of any demographic group to get and stay married. Despite these obvious differences, Is Marriage for White People? shares some important commonalities with Agatha Christie's mysteries. Banks seeks to solve a mystery, but red herrings draw attention away from the true issue that should be the subject of Banks's concern. The mystery, of course, is the black marriage ...


An Incomplete Revolution: Feminists And The Legacy Of Marital-Property Reform, Mary Ziegler Jan 2013

An Incomplete Revolution: Feminists And The Legacy Of Marital-Property Reform, Mary Ziegler

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

As this Article shows, the conventional historical narrative of the divorce revolution is not so much incorrect as incomplete. Histories of the divorce revolution have focused disproportionately on the introduction of no-fault rules and have correctly concluded that women's groups did not play a central role in the introduction of such laws. However, work on divorce law has not adequately addressed the history of marital-property reform or engaged with scholarship on the struggle for the Equal Rights Amendment to the federal Constitution. Putting these two bodies of work in dialogue with one another, the Article provides the first comprehensive ...


Toward Equality: Nonmarital Children And The Uniform Probate Code, Paula A. Monopoli Jun 2012

Toward Equality: Nonmarital Children And The Uniform Probate Code, Paula A. Monopoli

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article traces the evolution of the Uniform Probate Code's (UPC) broad equality framework for inheritance by nonmarital children in the context of the wider movement for legal equality for such children in society. It concludes that the UPC is to be lauded for its efforts to provide equal treatment to all nonmarital children. The UPC's commitment to such equality serves an expressive function for state legislatures and courts to follow its lead. The UPC has fulfilled its promise that all children regardless of marital status shall be equal for purposes of inheritance from or through parents, with ...


Probate Definition Of Family: A Proposal For Guided Discretion In Intestacy, The, Susan N. Gary Jun 2012

Probate Definition Of Family: A Proposal For Guided Discretion In Intestacy, The, Susan N. Gary

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Intestacy statutes may not match the wishes of many people who die intestate. Changes to the Uniform Probate Code (UPC) include or exclude potential takers, as the drafters attempt to bring the UPC provisions closer to the intent of more intestate decedents. As the UPC tries to fine-tune the intestacy statutes, however, family circumstances continue to get more and more complicated. Families headed by unmarried couples, blended families with children from multiple marriages, and families in which adults raise children who are not legally theirs, have become commonplace. For some decedents, non-family friends and caregivers may be more important than ...


The Devil Comes To Kansas: A Story Of Free Love, Sexual Privacy, And The Law, Charles J. Reid Jr. Jan 2012

The Devil Comes To Kansas: A Story Of Free Love, Sexual Privacy, And The Law, Charles J. Reid Jr.

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

On Sunday, September 19, 1886, Moses Harman, the editor of the radical newspaper Lucifer the Light-Bearer, presided over an inherently contradictory event-a free-love marriage ceremony between his associate editor, the thirty-seven-year-old Edwin Walker, and Moses' own daughter, the sixteen-year-old Lillian. The case that the two Harmans and Walker wished to present aimed to transform marriage from a public to a private relationship and from a permanent and exclusive one to a temporary one that permitted potentially many partners. State v. Walker and its parties have received some scholarly notice, but the truly radical quality of the arguments Moses, Edwin, and ...


Civil Marriage: Threat To Democracy, Jessica Knouse Jan 2012

Civil Marriage: Threat To Democracy, Jessica Knouse

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article argues that civil marriage and democracy are inherently incompatible, whether assessed from a transcultural perspective that reduces them to their most universal aspects or a culturally situated perspective that accounts for their uniquely American elaborations. Across virtually all cultures, civil marriage privileges sexual partners by offering them exclusive access to highly desirable government benefits, while democracy presupposes liberty and equality. When governments privilege sexual partners, they effectively deprive their citizens of liberty by encouraging them to enter sexual partnerships rather than selfdetermining based on their own preferences; they effectively deprive their citizens of equality by establishing insidious status ...


Modernizing Marriage, Adam Candeub, Mae Kuykendall Jul 2011

Modernizing Marriage, Adam Candeub, Mae Kuykendall

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article proposes to modernize the archaic procedures states use to authorize marriages so as to provide legal flexibility, promote efficiency, and enhance individual choice. Almost universally, states require couples' presence within their borders, however briefly, for a ceremony. After considering the historical and policy rationales for this requirement and finding them either obsolete or incoherent, we propose that states offer marriages to those outside their borders. Such distance marriages could occur via video-conference, using the internet or even telephone, with readily available safeguards to prevent fraud. This simple reform would allow certain couples who cannot marry under local law ...


The Evolution Of Same-Sex Marriage In Canada: Lessons The U.S. Can Learn From Their Northern Neighbor Regarding Same-Sex Marriage Rights, Christy M. Glass, Nancy Kubasek Jan 2008

The Evolution Of Same-Sex Marriage In Canada: Lessons The U.S. Can Learn From Their Northern Neighbor Regarding Same-Sex Marriage Rights, Christy M. Glass, Nancy Kubasek

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The broad differences between the United States and Canadian cases raise important questions about the social, political and legal factors that have promoted the extension of marriage rights in Canada while retarding similar efforts in the U.S. This article will compare the recent history of same-sex marriage laws in the United States and Canada. We argue that proponents of same-sex marriage as well as lawmakers could learn important lessons from the recent legalization of same-sex marriage in Canada. Section II develops a framework for comparing the U.S. and Canadian experience with same-sex marriage law. The next section traces ...


Friends With Benefits?, Laura A. Rosenbury Nov 2007

Friends With Benefits?, Laura A. Rosenbury

Michigan Law Review

Family law has long been intensely interested in certain adult intimate relationships, namely marriage and marriage-like relationships, and silent about other adult intimate relationships, namely friendship. This Article examines the effects of that focus, illustrating how it frustrates one of the goals embraced by most family law scholars over the past forty years: the achievement of gender equality, within the family and without. Part I examines the current scope of family law doctrine and scholarship, highlighting the ways in which the home is still the organizing structure for family. Despite calls for increased legal recognition of diverse families, few scholars ...


"Just" Married?: Same-Sex Marriage And A Hustory Of Family Plurality, Judith E. Koons Jan 2005

"Just" Married?: Same-Sex Marriage And A Hustory Of Family Plurality, Judith E. Koons

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

To contribute to a full moral deliberation about same-sex marriage, this Article inquires into the meanings of marriage, sexuality, and family from historical and narrative perspectives that are situated at the intersection of religious and political domains.


African American Intimacy: The Racial Gap In Marriage, R. Richard Banks, Su Jin Gatlin Jan 2005

African American Intimacy: The Racial Gap In Marriage, R. Richard Banks, Su Jin Gatlin

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This essay is divided into three parts. Part I documents the extent of the racial gap in marriage. Part II uses the marriage patterns of affluent Black men in particular to speculate about how the relationships of Black men and women might be influenced by the relative numbers of men and women and the men's socioeconomic characteristics in ways that depress marriage rates. Part III connects the low rate of marriage among African Americans to the differing interracial marriage rates of Black men and women.


Balancing The Demands Of The Workplace With The Needs Of The Modern Family: Expanding Family And Medical Leave To Protect Domestic Partners, Kimberly Menashe Glassman Apr 2004

Balancing The Demands Of The Workplace With The Needs Of The Modern Family: Expanding Family And Medical Leave To Protect Domestic Partners, Kimberly Menashe Glassman

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Note addresses the importance of expanding the federal Family and Medical Leave Act and state family and medical leave laws to protect domestic partners. Congress passed the Family and Medical Leave Act to allow workers to balance their work lives and family lives by granting workers the right to take leave time to care for an immediate family member in times of medical necessity. The term 'family member," however, is generally limited to relation y blood, adoption, or marriage, and does not include an individual's domestic partner. The concept of family has evolved in our legal system and ...


For And Against Marriage: A Revision, Anita Bernstein Nov 2003

For And Against Marriage: A Revision, Anita Bernstein

Michigan Law Review

When anthropologist Henry Sumner Maine issued his famous proclamation that modern legal development evolved "from Status to Contract," he used juridical categories to make a statement about progress. Voluntary relations now build the law, Maine declared. The alternative to voluntary relations - identity-based legal labels to decree what people may and may not do - must relocate to the dustbin of history. Only a backwater society would keep them. American legal change in the century-plus since Maine's death in 1888 gives credence to the claim that status inexorably yields to contract. At one level, newer developments refute the Maine thesis. "Stalkers ...


From Presumed Fathers To Lesbian Mothers: Sex Discrimination And The Legal Construction Of Parenthood, Susan E. Dalton Jan 2003

From Presumed Fathers To Lesbian Mothers: Sex Discrimination And The Legal Construction Of Parenthood, Susan E. Dalton

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

In Part I of this article, Dalton briefly reviews the way legal scholars commonly define sex-based discrimination, particularly as it pertains to issues of reproduction. Part II is a brief historical review of legal constructions of parenthood. In Part III, Dalton examines two legal concepts: retroactive legitimation and presumed fatherhood. Both concepts were introduced in 1872 and each independently encouraged judges to think of fatherhood as consisting of two distinct spheres, the biological and the social. She then traces the legal development of these concepts through a series of presumed father, retroactive legitimation, and putative father cases. In Part IV ...


Is Marriage Obsolete?, Lynn D. Wardle Jan 2003

Is Marriage Obsolete?, Lynn D. Wardle

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Is legal marriage obsolete? Wardle thinks not. In order to understand why not, it is necessary first to grasp the significance of the focus of the discussion on the legal status of marriage. As this Introduction suggests, lack of legal marriage status does not prevent families and communities from treating couples as married nor does the law forbid couples from voluntarily providing each other "marital benefits." Nevertheless, whether marriage is obsolete at the beginning of the twenty-first century is an important question. This article analyzes four dimensions of that question.


Covenant Marriage Turns Five Years Old, Steven L. Nock, Laura Sanchez, Julia C. Wilson, James D. Wright Jan 2003

Covenant Marriage Turns Five Years Old, Steven L. Nock, Laura Sanchez, Julia C. Wilson, James D. Wright

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Part I of this article discusses public policy rationales behind covenant marriage legislation, describes relevant aspects of Louisiana's legislation, and summarizes the efforts of other states to enact covenant marriage legislation. Part II discusses methods of data collection and analysis and identifies the demographic characteristics of covenant married couples as opposed to standard married couples in Louisiana. Part III addresses the dynamics behind couples' choice to have a covenant versus standard marriage. Part IV is an analysis of couples' satisfaction with their marriage option and the gendered dynamics of different levels of satisfaction with the marital choice.


Marriage Law: Obsolete Or Cutting Edge?, Michigan Journal Of Gender & Law Jan 2003

Marriage Law: Obsolete Or Cutting Edge?, Michigan Journal Of Gender & Law

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Over the past hundred years, social and cultural expectations surrounding various forms of committed relationships have changed dramatically, and contemporary legal systems have struggled to adapt. The result has been an extraordinary opportunity to test fundamental assumptions about law, about the cultural understandings that are enforced through state power, and about the mechanisms that drive law's evolution. The Michigan Journal of Gender & Law has drawn together an exceptional group of panelists who will discuss these questions throughout the day.


The Marriage Dower: Essential Guarantor Of Women's Rights In The West Bank And Gaza Strip, Heather Jacobson Jan 2003

The Marriage Dower: Essential Guarantor Of Women's Rights In The West Bank And Gaza Strip, Heather Jacobson

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article evaluates the impact that eliminating or reducing the marriage dower would have on the well-being of Muslim women in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Although Palestinian women's rights organizations seek to eliminate dower on the grounds that it is a "burdensome custom" that is "inconsistent with the intifada's stated goal of improving women's status," in fact, the interaction between dower and other laws relating to marriage and divorce is such that the majority of women would be materially harmed by its discontinuance. Therefore, while the movement to eliminate dower may benefit the financially secure ...


How To Plot Love On An Indifference Curve, Brian H. Bix May 2001

How To Plot Love On An Indifference Curve, Brian H. Bix

Michigan Law Review

In From Partners to Parents: The Second Revolution in Family Law, June Carbone offers nothing less than a whirlwind tour of the current doctrinal and policy debates of Family Law - an astounding feat in a book whose main text (excluding endnotes and appendices) does not reach 250 pages. There seem to be few controversies about which Carbone has not read widely and come to a conclusion, and usually a fair-minded one: from the effect of no-fault divorce reforms on the divorce rate, to the long-term consequences of slavery for the African-American family (pp. 67-84), to whether the Aid to Families ...


For The Best Of Friends And For Lovers Of All Sorts, A Status Other Than Marriage (Symposium: Unmarried Partners And The Legacy Of Marvin V. Marvin)" , David L. Chambers Jan 2001

For The Best Of Friends And For Lovers Of All Sorts, A Status Other Than Marriage (Symposium: Unmarried Partners And The Legacy Of Marvin V. Marvin)" , David L. Chambers

Articles

American governments have recently begun to experiment with new familial statuses for gay male and lesbian couples, who have demanded the right to marry but have been appeased with more modest forms of recognition.4 What I propose here is quite different. It is a status for people who have close bonds but do not want to be married to each other. I call this status "designated friends." Once registered, "designated friends" would obtain a limited number of privileges and undertake a limited number of responsibilities relating to the care for the other when ill or incapacitated or upon death ...