An Empirical Study on European Family and Succession Law (EUFams II)

by Thomas Pfeiffer, University of Heidelberg

EUFams II is a study funded by the European Commission with the objective of assessing the functioning and the effectiveness of European family and succession law. The project is coordinated by the Institute for Comparative Law, Conflict of Laws and International Business Law of Heidelberg University (Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Thomas Pfeiffer). Project partners are the Universities of Lund, Milan, Osijek, Valencia and Verona as well as the MPI Luxemburg. The two-year project entails various conferences and research activities, which will be completed by 31 August 2020.

A survey conducted in the first phase of EUFams II generated responses of approximately 1,400 professionals from 17 Member States. The main findings of the survey are presented in a report (with executive summary) drafted by Quincy C. Lobach and Tobias Rapp (Heidelberg University).

The results show a striking lack of overall familiarity with the instruments of European family and succession law. Respondents indicated that the legal framework is characterized by a high degree of complexity due to the multitude of instruments. Further matters include private divorces, party autonomy, and the impact of global migration flows and the so-called refugee crisis.

More information on EUFams II and its future research outputs can be found on the project’s website.

This project was funded by the European Union’s Justice Programme (2014-2020). The content of this study represents the views of the authors only and is their sole responsibility. The European Commission does not accept any responsibility for use that may be made of the information it contains.