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How the Law “Keeps the Money in the Family”: Lessons at the Intersection of Elder Care and Inheritance Disputes in Israel

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 September 2019


This Article offers a qualitative examination of the ways in which Israeli legal actors reflect and construct cultural understandings of the relationship between inheritance and elder care in cases in which the deceased has bequeathed property to a caregiver. This Article demonstrates that Israeli courts and lawyers reinforce and promote a cultural schema of family as a pristine domain of unconditional love, albeit one that has been emptied of the daily responsibilities of fulfilling the basic physical needs of elderly kin. Such a cultural schema diminishes the traditional parameters of family responsibility in order to adapt to present circumstances of elder care, while continuing to privilege the custom of keeping money in the family. Hence, this article reveals how inheritance law supports and enhances class reproduction through the institution of the family.

© 2019 American Bar Foundation 

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