Family law or also known as matrimonial law and covers the area of the law which deals with domestic relations and family matters. It also regulates family related relations like marriage, divorce, treatment of children and the related economic matters.
The family law did not come to be on its own as it was mostly derived from other English common laws like those about property and inheritance. It also shows ties with the juvenile court which is widely believed to be the precursor of the family court.
The existence of the juvenile court first gave judges authority over family matters but since it was more of an “unwritten law” the judges had a lot of leeway in determining the actual boundaries of the family law.
Alternatively, family law also extended from the implications on the property and economic wealth of the female’s family when she married. Matters such as inheritance, child custody and were concerned with family power structures and family economic interests.
Family law is even branched out into social legislation such as criminal law. For example, one issue that has plagued courts since the late 20th century is the matter of violence within a family. In these cases, the violence manifests as either verbal or physical abuse within the family circle against family members.
This article will deal with the different spheres of marital relations and how closely they are linked to the law.
In some marriages, the couple involved may introduce an economic element into the marriage by agreeing on a settlement or a contract.
Although in most marriages the legal procedure is just considered a formality some may go through proper settlement procedures introducing several clauses in the contract as in Islamic law(Shariah).
Basically, when such a thing occurs, marriage is only the consequence of the creation of certain obligations upon the wedding couple concerning maintenance, marital property, succession rights and custody of minor children. Hire our lawyer.
Economic Aspects Of Family Law
Property and General Wealth
The concerns about the marital property in a legal context are almost 400 years old. At first, the wife had no property when married and all her estate and revenue was managed by the husband whom she had to depend on for maintenance and support.
Then in a late 19th century when women rights were starting to be established, women were granted the right to own and manage property although disposal of certain items still required their spouses’ consent.
In the 1970s women got the right to have full control over their property and to have monetary support from their spouses even after divorce.
Now, typical property settlements after divorce also consider the non-monetary contributions of the woman as well like providing emotional support, taking care of the children and any professional or educational sacrifices she may have made due to the marriage.
Nuptials became a popular practice in the US in the 20th century, an exercise is done to protect the existing estate from being affected by the marriage or to ensure financial support after the marriage.
Maintenance and support
For maintenance and support, it is established that the widow gets a share of her spouses’ estate after his death. Divorce cases also argue upon that fact and the woman is expected to get a share of her once husband’s wealth.
This is reinforced about the law of dependents getting financial support from the husband. For the child, there are custody cases though if dissatisfied by the non-custodial lack of support, he/she can be sued.