Implementing a Jury Option in Family Violence Proceedings
Melissa L. Breger
Albany Law School
FAMILY LAW: BALANCING INTERESTS AND PURSUING PRIORITIES, Chapter 37, Lynn Wardle, Camille Williams, eds., pp. 306-312, Wm. S. Hein & Co., 2007
This article proposes that the law should afford litigants in family violence proceedings the option of jury trial in the adjudicatory phase of civil order of protection proceedings, and child protective proceedings, particularly in those cases involving physical violence or allegations of domestic violence. The proposition is drawn from the theory and research on procedural justice holding that litigants often focus on the appearance of fairness rather than on the actual outcome.
Family violence proceedings are poised for the jury trial option because litigant satisfaction with the legal process is of particular importance to these proceedings, and because the issues in family violence proceedings are cyclical and repetitive in nature. A jury option in family violence cases will enhance the perception of unbiased decision-making and consequently may improve compliance with resulting court orders.
This article is a condensed version of the article, Introducing the Construct of the Jury into Family Violence Proceedings and Family Court Jurisprudence, 13 Michigan Journal of Gender & Law 1 (2006). Available at: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1339983
Number of Pages in PDF File: 8
Date posted: June 6, 2010