The New "Illegitimacy": Revisiting Why Parentage Should Not Depend on Marriage

Friday and Saturday, March 25-26, 2011
09:00 AM - 05:00 PM
American University Washington College of Law, Room 603
4801 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC

It is an axiom of modern family law: children should not suffer as a result of being born to unmarried parents. This principle, however, is under attack. In some states, including New York and Massachusetts, children born to lesbian couples find that their status depends upon whether their parents are married (or in a civil union). No court has yet extended to the children of same-sex couples the well-established tenet that the law should not discriminate against children born outside marriage. It is also distressing that some support for same-sex marriage relies on the denigration of "illegitimate" children. Arguing that same-sex couples must be allowed to marry to prevent the "illegitimacy" of their children flips on its head the modern understanding that neither law nor society should penalize children of unmarried parents. This conference will address the issues raised by recent developments privileging the children of married parents.

Presented by the Journal of Gender, Social Policy and the Law and the National Center for Lesbian Rights


WCL Alumni, AU & WCL Students, Faculty & Staff – no charge
General Public - No Charge
(registration is required)

For further information, please contact:
Office of Special Events & Continuing Legal Education
American University Washington College of Law
Phone: 202.274.4075; Fax: 202.274.4079; or

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