In NC, a person is guilty of bigamy if he marries someone in NC while having a living spouse or if he marries someone in another state (while he’s still married in NC), and then lives with the “second” spouse in NC. It’s a felony. See North Carolina General Statute Section 14-283. However, he is not guilty of bigamy if his spouse was absent continuously for seven years and if he did not know that the spouse was alive during that time. Since it’s a criminal offense, a district attorney would have the authority to charge him with it. If you decide to pursue custody, the bigamy would likely be a factor in the judge’s decision, but it’s not entirely clear how much weight he or she would assign to that. That factor alone is probably not enough to warrant a reversal of custody, especially after nine years.
David L. McGuire
The Rosen Law Firm
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 200
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
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