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Year 2016 x

    The comparative discussions held during this seminar show that the different jurisdictions make use of – approximately – the same ingredients for their legislation on adult guardianship measures and continuing powers of attorney. Given the common international framework (for example the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities) and given the common societal context (cfr. the strong increase of the ageing population) this may not come as a surprise. Despite these common ingredients, the different jurisdictions have managed to arrive at different dishes spiced with specific local flavours. Given that each jurisdiction bears its own history and specific policy plans, this may not come as a surprise either. The adage ‘same same but different’ is in this respect a suitable bromide.
    For my own research, the several invitations – that implicitly or explicitly arose from the different discussions – to rethink important concepts or assumptions were of most relevance and importance. A particular example that comes to mind is the suggestion to ‘reverse the jurisprudence’ and to take persons with disabilities instead of healthy adult persons as a point of reference. Also, the invitation to rethink the relationship between the limitation of capacity and the attribution of a guard comes to mind as the juxtaposition of the different jurisdictions showed that these two aspects don’t need to be automatically combined. Also the discussion on the interference between the continuing powers of attorney and the supervision by the court, provoked further reflection on hybrid forms of protection on my part. Finally, the ethical and medical-legal approaches may lead to a reconsideration of the traditional underlying concepts of autonomy and the assessment of capacity.


Veerle Vanderhulst Ph.D.
Veerle Vanderhulst works at the Faculty of Law and Criminology, Vrije Universiteit Brussel

    Op 29 september 2015 werd te Antwerpen een studiedag georganiseerd getiteld, ‘Gezinstransities vanuit het perspectief van de kinderen’. Aangezien tegenwoordig steeds meer kinderen opgroeien in een nieuw samengesteld gezin, rijst de vraag hoe kinderen deze nieuwe gezinssamenstelling ervaren en welke functies de verschillende betrokken professionals daarbij vervullen. Tijdens de studiedag stond deze vraag centraal en werd het ontstaan van een dergelijk nieuw samengesteld gezin na echtscheiding vanuit verschillende invalshoeken onderzocht. Daarbij werden de ervaringen met het ouderschapsplan in Nederland eveneens toegelicht, en dit vanuit juridisch en sociologisch standpunt. Vervolgens werden een aantal workshops georganiseerd waar onder meer de pedagogische ouderschapsbelofte met de opvoedingspiramide aan bod kwam, het juridische ouderschapsplan, het plusouderschapsplan, alsook de rol van magistraten in de familie- en jeugdrechtbanken. Tot slot vond een debat plaats tussen verschillende panelleden, zijnde prof. Frederik Swennen, mevrouw Nancy Bleys, raadgever Justitie bij het Vlaams Ministerie van Welzijn, de federaal minister van Justitie, Koen Geens en een jongerenvertegenwoordiger, Thomas van Grinsven.
    On September 29th 2015 a conference was held in Antwerp. The title of the conference was ‘Family transitions from the perspective of the children’. Because nowadays an increasing number of children grow up in newly recomposed families, questions arise concerning the influence of these newly recomposed families on the wellbeing of children who live in these families. Moreover, questions arise about the part which different professionals play within this context. The family recomposition and its impact were studied from different perspectives. Since the Netherlands has introduced an ‘ouderschapsplan’ (‘parenting plan’) some time ago, several findings on such plans were presented from a legal and a sociological perspective. Thereafter, workshops were organised which concerned de ouderschapsbelofte (‘the parental promise’), het juridische ouderschapsplan (‘the legal parenting plan’), het plusouderschapsplan (the ‘plus parenting plan’) and the role played by magistrates confronted with conflicts in the family court. Finally, a debate was held between prof. Frederik Swennen, the Flemish Minister of Welfare, Nancy Bleys, the federal Minister of Justice Koen Geens and Thomas Van Grinsven as a representative of the youth.


Ulrike Cerulus
Ulrike Cerulus is a researcher at the law faculty of Hasselt University (Belgium), where she is preparing a PhD thesis with respect to parental rights and responsibilities within recomposed families.

Charlotte Mol
Charlotte Mol is a student assistant at the Utrecht Centre for European Research into Family Law (the Netherlands).

    Op donderdag 12 en vrijdag 13 november 2015 vond het eerste internationale besloten expertenseminarie van RETHINKIN. plaats te Gent en Kortrijk. Dit seminarie is het initiatief van de Wetenschappelijke Onderzoeks Groep (WOG) RETHINKIN. (Rethinking legal kinship studies in the Low Countries). Deze WOG is het resultaat van de samenwerking tussen enerzijds de Vlaamse Vereniging voor Familie & Recht (V.Fam.) en anderzijds de Nederlandse Alliantie Familie & Recht. Het doel van RETHINKIN. is het herdefiniëren van het familierecht in de Lage Landen (www.rethinkin.eu).
    Op het seminarie debatteerden internationale experten gedurende twee dagen over twee thema’s: de vergoeding van huishoudelijke inspanningen in relaties enerzijds en de zorg voor ouderen anderzijds. Deze topics werden op de eerste dag geanalyseerd vanuit economisch standpunt. Hierna wordt enkel ingegaan op de tweede dag van het seminarie, waarop beide thema’s in juridisch en historisch perspectief werden geplaatst.
    On Thursday 12 and Friday 13 November 2015, the first international closed expert seminar of RETHINKIN. took place in Ghent and Kortrijk. This seminar was an initiative of the Scientific Research Group (WOG) RETHINKIN. (Rethinking legal kinship studies in the Low Countries). This WOG is the result of a cooperation between the Flemish Association of Family & Law (V.Fam.) and the Dutch Alliance Family & Law. RETHINKIN. steers the scientific redefinition of family law in the Low Countries and aims at taking a leading international role in this scientific discussion (www.rethinkin.eu).
    At this seminar, international experts discussed two themes: the remuneration of household production and informal elderly care. On the fhe first day these themes were analysed from an economic point of view. On the second day of the expert seminar, both of the themes were studied from a legal and a historical perspective. In this report, only the second day of the seminar will be discussed.


Katrien De Vos Ph.D.
Katrien De Vos is promovenda aan de faculteit Rechtsgeleerdheid van de Katholieke Universiteit Leuven.
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