Effect of Living with Fiancee on Custody

The courts do not necessarily look badly on living together any longer even if there are no marriage plans. The fact that you are engaged will help.

Seeking more visitation with your child is usually a good thing that the courts like to see. They want both parents involved in the child’s life as much as possible and unless there are legal implications about who the parent is living with, such as criminal history, drug/alcolhol use, physical abuse history, they do not generally base their decision on who the parent chooses to live with.

If you are planning to marry this person, I suggest that you have them come to court also, if they are an upstanding person who wants to have a relationship with your child, it will look good to the court that they are there and willing to be questioned about their background, ethics and motivation. It may not even come up, but if this person is going to be your spouse, and the child’s stepparent, they are going to have more involvement in that child’s life. The courts may want to know more.

If you are not divorced yet, the courts may have more of an issue with the situation of custody visitation. But living with someone without being married is no longer illegal in NC, so that part of it should not matter if you are divorced.

Thank you for the response, stepmother . . .

The divorce has been final for several years, so I don’t think there would be any issues there. And my fiancee has developed a very good relationship with my child, who is very excited about her moving here. She is certainly willing to become involved in the process and meet with whomever is recommended to demonstrate her commitment and character.

We shall see!

Generally, the fact that you are not married will not have a negative impact on your case. However, if you were married it may have a positive impact on your case.

Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.787.6361 main fax

Charlotte Office
301 McCullough Drive
Suite 510
Charlotte, NC 28262
Main Phone: (704)307.4600
Main Fax: (704) 9343.0044

Durham & Chapel Hill Office
1829 East Franklin Street
Building 600
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
(919) 321.0780


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My fiancee is moving from out of state next month, and we plan to live together for between 4 and 8 months (depending on which time of year we decide to hold our wedding) before we get married.

Will this arrangement have a negative impact on my desire to seek more visitation with my child? I am planning to start proceedings to increase visitation, and have had a last minute panic about this.

We are willing to go ahead and get married in a simple Justice of the Peace type of deal, if it would be of significant help to our case.