Professor Tanya Marsh discusses ‘question of what we own of ourselves’ in Washington Post regarding new Texas fetal burial rules

Photo of Wake Forest Law Professor Tanya Marsh posing in the Worrell Professional Center

Tanya Marsh joined the Wake Forest faculty in 2010, following a ten-year career practicing real estate and corporate law in Indianapolis, Indiana, including nearly five years as the Vice President of Legal for Kite Realty Group Trust, a real estate investment trust traded on the NYSE. Tanya teaches real estate transactions and property.

Professor Tanya Marsh was quoted in following Washington Post article, ”After months of controversy, Texas will require aborted fetuses to be cremated or buried,” written by Samantha Schmidt and published on Nov. 29, 2016. The story also ran on MSN News.

Marsh shares her opinion on the “question of what we own of ourselves” regarding Texas’ new rules that require fetal remains to be buried or cremated.  The highly controversial rules, which face great opposition from abortion rights advocates, will take effect Dec. 19, according to the article.

Marsh tells the Washington Post, “The question of what we own of ourselves — what is the legal status of biological material that’s been removed from us — there’s very little law about that, except to say that it’s not ours.”

In terms of fetuses, “That’s an area in between people born alive and a part of person that had no capability of independent existence.  These are deep philosophical, religious, and legal questions that we’ve punted,” Marsh said.

Marsh teaches Funeral and Cemetery Law; Property; Real Estate Transactions; a Seminar on Law, Business, and the Economy and Professional Development. Her scholarship addresses the laws regarding the status, treatment and disposition of human remains, as well as commercial real estate and the regulation of community banks.  She has authored two books: “The Law of Human Remains” (2015) and “Cemetery Law” (2015).