I am planning on marrying a man who has a child in a previous marriage. Is there a way to make me a permeate step mother?

Asked almost 2 years ago - Castle Rock, CO

The father is the Custodian Parent of the child and the child lives with him for 9 months out of the year. The Child's mother has his for 3 months. I don't believe she would allow me to have complete rights over her son such as adopting the child, but if my soon to be husband dies and the child is underage, would I have rights to him legally and have custody just like his father? GOD forbid anything like that to happen, but if it were, I would want to carry on being a step mother to his son. Is there anything I need to do (sign papers) or is marriage enough and I would legally become his parent? Not sure how any of this works. Power of Attorney?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Daniel Nelson Deasy

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . You ask such an imortant set of questions. Bless you for caring so much about these kids. As Mr, Littman has written, however, you really have no place in the children's lives legally if your spouse passes.

    In no way am I offering you legal advice, and in no way has my comment created an attorney-client relationship.... more
  2. David Littman

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

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    Answered . The long and short answer is that a step parent rarely has legal rights to a child. When the parent dies, the other parent usually assumes care for the child. If she were not to do so, you would be in a different position. You can only adopt him if the biological mother is willing to relinquish her legal rights or if she abandons him. It sounds like this has not happened. There is no such thing as a permanent step parent. Good luck to you

  3. Stephen Clark Harkess

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . Step-parents do not have the same legal status as legal parents. Your relationship with the child's mother will probably benefit if you keep this in mind. If your husband passes away, the child will likely go to live with his mother. If she allowed him to stay with you for six months with the father gone, you would gain standing to seek a custody order. However, if that did not happen, you would have no legal rights.

    You can reach Harkess & Salter LLC at (303) 531-5380 or info@Harkess-Salter.com. Stephen Harkess is an attorney... more

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