Understanding Arizona as a Community Property State

Arizona is a community property state.

Community Property in Arizona


Arizona is a “Community Property” state when it comes to property acquired during a marriage, per A.R.S. 25-211. This means that property that is acquired by either spouse during the marriage is jointly held by each. This excludes:

  • Property acquired by gift, devise, or descent.
  • Property acquired after service of a petition for divorce, legal separation, or annulment.

In this case, “property” is not merely land or housing, but also includes other owned assets such as jewelry, vehicles, cash, debt, and investment accounts.

Although Arizona follows community property law, per A.R.S. 25-318 it divides property equitably (“fairly”) rather than equally. This means that, upon divorce, legal separation, or annulment of a marriage, property isn’t necessarily split fifty-fifty. Arizona does not have a specific list regarding how a judge must ultimately rule to split property.

The easiest way to handle property division when a marriage ends is through a settlement agreement where both parties can collaborate to decide who is granted which properties. Settlement agreements usually provide for properties to be split equally, co-owned, sold, or given entirely to one person. A divorce attorney is very helpful in handling this agreement and the mediation that it may require.


Rideout Law Group handles cases throughout the entire state of Arizona, with offices located in Scottsdale and Lake Havasu City. Our attorneys are experienced in handling settlement agreements and property division. For a free consultation, call 480-584-3328.



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