St. Mary's Law Journal
Family law has significantly changed over the last twenty-five years, and certain areas will likely continue to change. Family law tends to follow, rather than lead, social upheaval and adjustment in family decisions and structures. The most important legal changes in family law are a result of massive shifts in American social, political, and economic constructs in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s.
Family law will continue to evolve because of three critical developments. First is the expansion of the concept of what constitutes a “family” in the modern context. Next is the treatment of children as autonomous individuals, separate and distinct from their parents in the legal sense of family. Third is the revolution in reproductive technology. Each of these trends will have a significant impact on the future of family law, which is the vehicle that is frequently used to grapple with serious, meaningful, and essential questions about our lives.
Victoria Mather, Evolution and Revolution in Family Law, 25 St. Mary's L.J. 405 (1993).