After ending an unhealthy relationship with a spouse or partner, many people are ready to move on and find new love – even before the divorce is final or before the child custody arrangements are made. But what happens if you become romantically involved with someone new and want to live with them? Will it affect your child custody case or your child visitation schedule?

While the answer depends on the details of your individual case, you should keep in mind that judges decide on parenting plans and child custody based on the best interests of the child. If your new boyfriend, your new girlfriend, or your living arrangements affect those interests directly, it could affect the outcome of your case as well.

Before you decide on cohabitation during your child custody case, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is this decision being made with the best interests of my child in mind?
  • What is the child’s relationship with the person I am moving in with?
  • Have you spoken to your child about the possible move and his or her feelings?
  • Does this person add stability to my child’s life, or the opposite?
  • How does my new relationship affect my child?
  • What will my child’s new home environment be like?
  • Does this person have a history of domestic violence or domestic abuse?
  • Does this person have a criminal history?
  • Does this person struggle with a substance abuse issue or an addiction issue?
  • Has your child voiced any concerns about living with your new partner?

Moving in with a new partner is part of starting a new chapter in life and moving forward past your divorce. However, the timing of this move, as well as the person you choose to be with, can have an affect on your life and your child’s life.

Do you have more questions about child custody and cohabitation? Speak with a Seattle child custody attorney by calling 425-460-0550 today.

Molly B. Kenny
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Divorce and Child Custody Attorney Serving Bellevue and Seattle Washington
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