The Family Law Bill and Society’s Development: More Harmony or Growing Conflict?
Considering the social momentousness of the issues dealt with in the new Family Law Bill that has been introduced in the Riigikogu, the Chancellery of the Riigikogu commissioned an analysis of the social implications of the Family Law Bill from the expert group at the University of Tartu’s Institute of Sociology and Social Policy.
The author of the article briefly summarizes the findings and emphasizes that the draft law is in harmony with key social changes in Estonian society – democratization, individualization, expanded negotiation-based decision-making etc. At the same time, analysts draw attention to the risks from changes, especially ones related to changes in marital property relations. Changes related to children are generally considered relevant, as the changes deal with children as more of an active social subject and lend greater consideration to children’s interests. Based on the fact that a number of the principles in the draft Family Act are significantly different from soci-ety’s core values and social practice, experts say it is essential to publicize them actively within various society groups. Among other things, specialists have discussed the possibility of compiling, instead of a new full law, an amendment act to the current Family Act – as long as some of the basic principles in the current draft law (such as the change pertaining to property law) are left out of the draft law.