K. Boele-Woelki (Utrecht University)

In this contribution a plea is made for fundamental academic research into the convergence of family law legislation within the EU Member States by means of the development and formulation of European norms on the basis of comparative law and treaty standards. After a brief stocktaking of the literature on European family law, both within and outside the Netherlands (section 1), an indication is given of the path that may be taken in order to attain a European family law (section 2) and the role such a European family law would play (section 3). Finally, it is indicated in which areas of family law research may be undertaken in order to determine and/or promote family law legislation within Europe.

Cite as: K. Boele-Woelki, The road towards a European family law, vol 1.1 ELECTRONIC JOURNAL OF COMPARATIVE LAW, (November 1997), <>

1. Interest in a European family law
1.1 Activities of academics
1.2 Activities of the Council of Europe
2. The road towards a European family law
3. The usefulness of a European family law
4. The subject matter and method of research
4.1 The influence of European norms on national family law in Europe
4.2 The property law aspects of marriage and divorce
4.3 The property law aspects of cohabitation outside marriage
4.4 The rights of minors
4.5 The protection of minors
Concluding remarks

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