Back to the Drawing Board: Barriers to Joint Decision-Making in Custody Cases Involving Intimate Partner Violence
Dana Harrington Conner
Widener University - School of Law
Duke Journal of Gender Law & Policy, Vol. 18, No. 2, 2011
Widener Law School Legal Studies Research Paper No. 12-33
For survivors of intimate partner violence, custody is, without question, one of the most important issues addressed by our legal system. For battered women, the court’s decision regarding their children is critical. As a result, legal scholars have examined, in depth, the value of sole custody awards in favor of battered women, as well as the dangers of joint custody. To that end, this Article considers, beyond the obvious risks of physical harm, why joint legal custody is not a viable alternative to sole legal custody in cases involving intimate partner violence. In addition, by de-constructing the fundamental aspects of co-parenting essential to an award of joint legal custody, this Article provides vital tools to judges tasked with custody determinations in cases involving domestic violence.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 39
Keywords: family law, domestic relations, child custody, intimate partner violence, battered women
JEL Classification: K19, K39, J12
Date posted: September 15, 2012
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