Family

ENCYCLOPEDIA OF PRIVACY, Vol. 1, p. 217, William G. Staples ed., 2006

GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2012-99

GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2012-99

7 Pages Posted: 23 Oct 2012

See all articles by Naomi Cahn

Naomi Cahn

University of Virginia School of Law

Date Written: 2006

Abstract

Based on contemporary privacy law, this entry discusses two different aspects of family privacy: (1) the marital relationship and (2) the parent-child relationship. Marital privacy protects several aspects of married life. The first form of marital privacy protects the very decision of whom to marry. While state laws generally establish who may marry whom, the Supreme Court has established the quasi-fundamental nature of the right to marry. The second form of marital privacy involves the right to relational privacy. This constitutionally developed right to marital privacy protects the relationship from undue interference, particularly in the context of sexual decision-making.

There also are several categories of parent-child privacy. The Supreme Court has recognized a right to raise children, including the authority to direct their religious and educational upbringing. Parent-child privacy also protects a married man’s right to a relationship with his child. Generally, the Supreme Court has also protected the rights of unwed fathers when they have lived with or established a substantial relationship with their children, unless the unwed father is asserting rights against an “intact” family. Thus, the Court has protected an unmarried man’s right against an unmarried mother to establish a relationship with their child.

Keywords: privacy, family law, marital relationship, parent-child relationship, marital privacy, right to marry, relational privacy, parent-child privacy, family

JEL Classification: K10

Suggested Citation

Cahn, Naomi R., Family (2006). ENCYCLOPEDIA OF PRIVACY, Vol. 1, p. 217, William G. Staples ed., 2006, GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2012-99, GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2012-99, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2165546

Naomi R. Cahn (Contact Author)

University of Virginia School of Law ( email )

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States

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