Inheritance Law and the Evolving Family

Ralph C. Brashier
Book Cover

PB: $32.95
EAN: 978-1-59213-222-5
Publication: Jan 04

HC: $81.50
EAN: 978-1-59213-221-8
Publication: Jan 04

Ebook: $32.95
EAN: 978-1-59213-783-1

272 pages
6 x 9

How inheritance law has failed to recognize the modern family


Nontraditional families are today an important part of American family life. Yet when a loved one dies, our inheritance laws are often stingy even towards survivors in the nuclear family. With humor, enthusiasm, and a bit of righteous outrage, Ralph C. Brashier explores how probate laws ignore gender roles and marital contributions of the spouse, often to the detriment of the surviving widow; how probate laws pretend that unmarried couples—particularly gay and lesbian ones—do not exist; how probate laws allow a parent to disinherit even the neediest child; and how probate laws for nonmarital children, adopted children, and children born of surrogacy or other forms of assisted reproductive technology are in flux or simply don't exist. A thoughtful examination of the current state of probate law and the inability of legislators to recognize and provide for the broad range of families in America today, this book will be read by those with an interest in the relationship between families and the law across a wide range of academic disciplines.

Table of Contents

1. Spouses
2. Unmarried Cohabitants
3. Children
4. Paternity
5. Adoption
6. Assisted Reproduction
Final Thoughts: Where from Here?

About the Author(s)

Ralph C. Brashier is the Cecil C. Humphreys Professor of Law at the University of Memphis School of Law. He was a co-author of the "Keeping Current" column in the American Bar Association's Probate and Property magazine, and continues to serve as a contributing editor. In addition to penning a number of law review articles on the subject of inheritance law, he serves as a member of the Tennessee Uniform Probate Code Commission and is a former editor-in-chief of the Mississippi Law Journal.


In the Series

  • Gender, Family, and the Law edited by D. Kelly Weisberg

    Gender, Family, and the Law, edited by D. Kelly Weisberg, aims to present a rich and diverse collection of books from social science and legal perspectives on topics relevant to gender, the family, and public policy. It attempts to shed light on the complex nature of public regulation of the private family by addressing the law's response to the changing nature of men's and women's roles and the evolution of the family.