This module aims to introduce students to the main features of Family Law in England and Wales. It aims to provide students with knowledge and understanding of the various status relationships which exist (e.g. spouse, civil partner, cohabitant, parent) and of the consequences which flow from them. The module examines, in particular, the legal implications of family breakdown whether the parties are a married couple, civil partners or cohabitants, and whether or not they have children. The course considers not only the rights and responsibilities of family members but also the protective function of family law, in particular the law relating to domestic violence and child protection. The adjustive function of family law is also considered, in particular the adjustment of property rights on relationship breakdown, whether the parties be spouses, civil partners, cohabitants or other home sharers.

As well as giving students a good grounding in black letter law, the module aims to foster understanding of the social and policy issues which underpin the law, and also trends and developments. Family Law is a rapidly developing subject. It is also an area of law that deals with the trials and tribulations of the human condition. For these reasons it is a challenging, but fascinating, subject.