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Unit information: Advanced Family Law in 2015/16

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Unit name Advanced Family Law
Unit code LAWD30002
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Professor. Masson
Open unit status Not open

LAWD20036 Family Law



School/department University of Bristol Law School
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Description including Unit Aims

The unit will build on and extend students' knowledge by exploring key themes in family law relating to children and adults, which are subject to the Competing pressures of paternalism and autonomy. In particular, in child law it will examine state support for families in need; state intervention for child protection and the provision of substitute families by adoption. Relating to adults it will examine the extent to which individuals are able to make their own financial arrangements for themselves or their children when entering or leaving formal or informal relationships (marriage/ civil partnership/ cohabitation). It will develop students' knowledge and understanding of the role and limits of law and the state in regulating relationships between adults, and parents and children.

Intended Learning Outcomes

By the end of this unit a successful student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of case and statute law relating to: financial / property allocation on divorce/dissolution and on the breakdown of informal relationships; Public child law; adoption and the implications of arts 3,6 and 8 of the ECHR
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the current application of the law through familiarity with empirical research literature and case studies
  • Solve legal problems
  • Find and use primary legal materials to answer questions and extend/update their knowledge of the subjects studie through analysis/synthesis, critical judgment and evaluation

Teaching Information

10 lectures (including enhancement sessions) and 10 two-hour seminars

Assessment Information

Two summative pieces of coursework of 2,000 words, each contributing 50% to the final mark.

Students will be required to submit one written formative assignment.

The assessments will assess all of the intended learning outcomes for this unit.

Reading and References

Family Law Statutes 2015-16; Probert (8th ed) or Herring 6th ed; Law Commission (2014) LC 343, Marital Property, Needs and Agreements, TSO; Douglas, G et al (2007) A failure of Trust, UoB/ Cardiff University; J. Fortin (2009) Children's Rights and the developing law, Oxford: OUP; Pearce, J et al (2011) Just following instructions, UoB.