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The proliferation of multigenerational U.S. households provides a new perspective on the social customs and practices concerning coresidence in the United States. Rather than relying outdated presumptions of parental control, this Article argues that police should be compelled to conduct a more thorough inquiry before searching areas occupied exclusively by the adult child. Police should differentiate between "common" and private areas, and inquire into any agreements - formal or informal - that the parent and child may have regarding access and control over such areas. By fully recognizing the changing nature of the American household and rejecting a bare reliance on the presumption of parental control, parents and adult children alike will be afforded the Fourth Amendment protection they deserve.


Originally published by Cornell Journal of Law & Public Policy in 2011.