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The Relevance of Violence in Family Law Decision Making

Australian Journal of Family Law, Vol. 9, pp. 58-69, 1995

Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 08/98

13 Pages Posted: 21 Aug 2008  

Reg Graycar

The University of Sydney Law School

Date Written: August, 21 2008

Abstract

Of all the areas of law, family law is the one in which violence, while it may not be the issue in question in a particular case, is nonetheless often central to the context of a dispute. This is not surprising in view of the fact that most violence against women is perpetrated by men known to them, in particular by men with whom they are or have been in intimate relationships. Yet despite its prevalence, violence in the home has historically been rendered invisible in family law decision making. This discussion explores how violence might be made more visible in family law decision making and considers ways in which decision making structures might better respond to violence where it is a clear part of the context of a dispute. While violence had increasingly come to be seen as highly relevant to the welfare of children, less attention had been paid to its relevance in property proceedings. The author argues that the widespread and pervasive nature of violence against women must be recognised, as opposed to conceptualising 'family violence' in an isolated gender-neutral fashion.

Keywords: family law decision-making, domestic violence, gender, gendered harm, family violence, property proceedings, child custody, law reform

JEL Classification: K10, K11, K30, K40

Suggested Citation

Graycar, Reg, The Relevance of Violence in Family Law Decision Making (August, 21 2008). Australian Journal of Family Law, Vol. 9, pp. 58-69, 1995; Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 08/98. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1243022

Reg Graycar (Contact Author)

The University of Sydney Law School ( email )

New Law Building, F10
The University of Sydney
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia

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