Free US Law DictionaryBETA
Family law is an area of the law that deals with family-related issues and domestic relations including, but not limited to:
- the nature of marriage, civil unions, and domestic partnerships;
- issues arising during marriage, including spousal abuse, legitimacy, adoption, surrogacy, child abuse, and child abduction
- the termination of the relationship and ancillary matters including divorce, annulment, property settlements, alimony, and parental responsibility orders (in the United States, child custody and visitation, child support awards).
This list is by no means dispositive of the potential issues that come through the family court system. In many jurisdictions in the United States, the family courts see the most crowded dockets. Litigants representative of all social and economic classes are parties within the system.
For the Conflict of Laws elements dealing with transnational and interstate issues, see marriage (conflict), divorce (conflict) and nullity (conflict).