Community Property States

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Introduction

Community property states are states that follow community property laws. These laws determine how property is owned and distributed between spouses during a marriage, as well as in the event of separation or divorce. The nine community property states in the U.S. are Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin.

In community property states, all assets and debts acquired during the marriage are considered joint property and are divided equally between spouses in the event of a divorce. This includes not only income and assets earned during the marriage but also debts incurred by either spouse. Community property laws aim to ensure that both spouses receive an equal share of marital property and debts.

Community Property Laws by State

StateCommunity Property StatusCommon Law Marriage StatusMinimum Marriage Age ( parental consent)
ArizonaYesNot Allowed 16 Years Old
CaliforniaYesNot Allowed
IdahoYesNot Allowed 16 Years Old
LouisianaYesNot Allowed 16 Years Old
NevadaYesNot Allowed 17 Years Old
New MexicoYesNot Allowed 16 Years Old
TexasYesAllowed 17 Years Old
WashingtonYesNot Allowed 17 Years Old
WisconsinYesNot Allowed 16 Years Old

List of Community Property States

The nine U.S. states that have community property laws in place are Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin. Each of these nine community property states has its own unique set of laws and regulations governing the ownership and distribution of marital property. For example, in Arizona, the property is divided equally between spouses, but there are exceptions for property acquired through inheritance or gifts. In California, all property acquired during marriage is considered common property, while property acquired before marriage or through inheritance or gifts is separate property. In Louisiana, community property laws are based on French and Spanish civil law and include provisions for separate property and quasi-community property. Similarly, Nevada allows for the creation of separate property by written agreement between spouses.

In New Mexico, both spouses have equal management and control over community property, but separate property can be maintained by agreement or through a prenuptial agreement. In Texas, community property laws are some of the most stringent in the country, requiring an equal division of all assets and debts acquired during marriage. In Washington, property acquired during marriage is community property, but there are exceptions for property acquired by gift, inheritance, or during periods of legal separation. Finally, Wisconsin also follows a strict equal division of community property but also has provisions for the creation of marital property agreements.

The 9 community property states are:

1. Arizona
2. California
3. Idaho
4. Louisiana
5. Nevada
6. New Mexico
7. Texas
8. Washington
9. Wisconsin

Community Property States List

Arizona

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Community Property Status

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Yes

Arizona is a community property state. In this state, all assets acquired during the marriage are considered community property, and each spouse is entitled to an equal share of the property upon divorce. However, there are exceptions for property acquired through inheritance or gifts.

California

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Community Property Status

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Yes

California is a community property state. California community property law considers all property acquired during a marriage to be community property, including income earned by either spouse. Property acquired before marriage or through inheritance or gifts is separate property. In the event of a divorce, community property is divided equally between spouses.

Idaho

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Community Property Status

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Yes

Idaho is a community property state. In the state, community property is any property acquired during the marriage, and each spouse has an equal right to control the property. If a divorce occurs, the community property is divided equally between the spouses.

Louisiana

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Community Property Status

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Yes

Louisiana is a community property state. Louisiana's community property laws are based on French and Spanish civil law. Community property is divided equally between spouses, but there are provisions for separate property and quasi-community property. Quasi-community property is property acquired outside of Louisiana but would have been considered community property if it had been acquired within the state.

Nevada

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Community Property Status

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Yes

Nevada is a community property state. In the state, community property is any property acquired during the marriage, but separate property can be created by written agreement between spouses. In the event of a divorce, community property is divided equally between spouses, while the separate property remains with the spouse who owns it.

New Mexico

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Community Property Status

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Yes

New Mexico is a community property state. In the state, both spouses have equal management and control over community property. However, separate property can be maintained by agreement or through a prenuptial agreement. In the event of a divorce, community property is divided equally between spouses.

Texas

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Community Property Status

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Yes

Texas is a community property state. Texas has some of the strictest community property laws in the country. All property acquired during the marriage is considered community property and is divided equally between spouses upon divorce. There are limited exceptions for property acquired through inheritance or gifts.

Washington

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Community Property Status

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Yes

Washington is a community property state. Washington law states that all property acquired during the marriage is community property, but there are exceptions for property acquired by gift, inheritance, or during periods of legal separation. Community property is divided equally between spouses upon divorce.

Wisconsin

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Community Property Status

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Yes

Wisconsin is a community property state. In the state, all property acquired during the marriage is considered community property and is divided equally between spouses upon divorce. However, there are provisions for marital property agreements, which allow couples to specify their own rules for how property should be divided in the event of a divorce.

FAQs

What is a community property state ?

A community property state is a state that follows community property laws, which determine how property is owned and distributed between spouses during a marriage and in the event of separation or divorce.

Which states are community property states ?

The community property states in the U.S. are Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin.

How many states are community property states ?

There are nine community property states in the United States.

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