Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Web references on "filial responsibility laws" have increased considerably recently; how about Wikipedia?

I did a Google search on “filial responsibility laws” a couple days ago, and noticed a tremendous explosion on links to article on the subject, since 2007, where there was relatively little.  Now (in early 2013) there are about fifty pages of results, and the postings on this blog mostly appear around page 44.

The stories are largely from media outlets (often clones) and law firms, and many of them talk about the recent case in Pennsylvania that broke lose last May. 
Generally, lawyers are concerned that in the future states may be more likely to pursue adult children, given the crimping of their state budgets.   Many of them say that the laws have been little used in the recent past, and are a drawback to the “poor laws” from England that would have come over in colonial times.  The situation in Pennsylvania seems to be particularly provocative, and apparently seems to invite providers (like nursing homes) to go after family members first.
The issue certainly has an impact on the debate over “family values” and marriage.  It is certainly not true that legally-driven family responsibility is limited to a decision to engage in behavior that can result in having children. 
Wikipedia doesn’t (yet) have an article yet on filial responsibility laws (yes, maybe I should write one – where will I make the time?) but there is an article on filial piety (in Confucian sense) here. AWikipedia article would need to detail all state, provincial or country laws and that would be difficult to track down and give all the url's for.  I've done that for some states on this blog (particularly in July 2007). 

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