How is martial property divided upon divorce in Arizona?


In most cases, Arizona courts divide community property equally between parties to a divorce, regardless of who earned it. While community property division may seem like a straightforward concept, the application of this rule is not always simple. Certain property can be considered as separate property belonging to only one spouse. For example, even in a community property state, certain property acquired during the marriage, such as gifts or inheritances, is considered separate property, and thus belongs solely to one spouse. In addition, one spouse’s sole and separate property can become "comingled" with the community property, which transforms that property into community property.

Further, it is not uncommon for married spouses to use community income to pay off or improve one spouse's sole and separate property. This situation creates a community interest, known as an equitable lien, in the sole and separate property of the other spouse. These complexities within the relatively straightforward community property rule can give rise to disagreement, and even hotly contested litigation.

With the help of an Arizona family law attorney, couples may be able to avoid litigation and resolve their issues without court intervention. While property division disagreements during a divorce can involve a great deal of stress and anxiety, an Arizona divorce attorney can help spouses understand their rights to alleviate much of this burden.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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