Legal Question in Family Law in North Carolina

Seven year Fiancee is dying, what are my rights?


My mother has been living with her fiancee for seven years, but they never have gotten married. They live in North Carolina. Her fiancee has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and doesn't have long to live. His children have already been talking about what they want to take(it sickens mean). I wanted to find out what my mother should do. Alot of the things in the home were gifts to her or were brought in by her when they moved in together. I also didn't know about since they aren't married if she still has rights to the home, truck, etc. If I can answer any questions I will gladly do so. Thanks for your help in advance, Lee

Asked on 10/17/03, 4:42 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Jim Griffin The Law Office of James L. Griffin

Re: Seven year Fiancee is dying, what are my rights?

In a situation such as this, her rights are limited. She, of course, has a right to anything she brought into the household. She MAY even have some rights to things purchased together with money from a joint account. However, if the house was his and she moved in with him, the house will likely go to his estate only. IF the truck is in his name, purchased by him, the same rules would apply. In NC, no marriage equals very little rights. She should speak to her fiancee about this before it is too late. He could either make a will or add a codicil to an existing will if he was willing to.

If you would like to discuss this further and provide additional details, you can e-mail me at:

[email protected]

Either way, good luck.

Jim Griffin

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Answered on 10/17/03, 11:52 pm

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