Family Law is the area of the law involving issues related to marriage and children.  Family Law is known in some jurisdictions as domestic relations law.  Family Law is governed by state statutes as family issues and is generally seen as an area that should be left to each individual state.  Within Family Law, courts cover such issues as divorce, marriage, child support, custody, and property division within a marriage.  In some jurisdictions, Family Law also includes guardianship and competency hearings.  Family Law can also involve juvenile criminal matters and adoption.

Family Law can also cover such issues as relationships between parent and child, such as abuse and neglect of children, emancipation of minors, and termination of parental rights.  Parent and child issues are not necessarily limited to those issues between parents and minor child, but can cover such issues as an adult child’s responsibility to support an indigent adult parent.

In some states, Family Law is dealt with in a specific Family Court.  In such jurisdictions, these courts are courts of limited jurisdiction subject to review by a higher court in that particular state.  Other courts may deal with Family Law in a Family Law division.  It is not usual in such jurisdictions to have masters or special masters through whom most matters involving family law are decided.

Family Law is an area of legal specialization.  Attorneys experienced in this area may spend the majority of their practice before the Family Court, so their knowledge of the court in this area gives them advantage over attorneys who take a Family Law case occasionally or as a favor to a friend.  In most instances, they have taken additional courses on the subject so have a better understanding of many of the uniform laws that apply to Family Law such as those relating to child support and custody.  They may also have better knowledge of the psychological effects of divorce on children and have special skills in relating to children in instances where children are called upon to testify in court.


Comments are closed.