Filing for legal/physical custody

Since it sounds like you already have a separation agreement that addresses custody of the children, you would either have to mutually agree to modify the agreement, or file a separate action for custody and visition to ask the court to make any changes in the current situation. You would not be able to do that in the divorce hearing, unless you put it in your divorce complaint or your answer to any complaint filed by your spouse.

Shonnese D. Stanback
The Rosen Law Firm
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 200
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.256.1534 direct voice
919.256.1667 direct fax
919.787.6668 main voice
919.787.6361 main fax

The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.

My stbx and I will be divorcing soon. In regard to custody, the separation papers only address joint custody and equal visitation. One of my two children is my step-child, and I’m aware of my lack of any legal ground there. However, I am interested in physical/legal custody of my other child to simply be able to have final say in major issues. Specifically, I am concerned about her wanting to leave the state with the kids.

Can we address custody at the divorce hearing or do I need to file a custody action in addition? Thanks