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Division Of Property And Debt


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Community Property Division

Arizona is a community property state and property acquired during the marriage will typically be divided equally between the parties. If couples cannot agree on who gets what property, an Arizona Family Law Judge will decide how the property is divided at trial.

Examples of community property include the following:

    • Houses
    • Automobiles and Other Vehicles
    • Banking and Investment Accounts
    • Retirement Pensions, 401ks, and IRAs
    • Furniture and Personal Property

Sole & Separate Property

There are certain types of property that will be considered sole and separate property and will be awarded entirely to one spouse without any division. The spouse claiming a property to be their sole and separate will have the burden of proving that the property meets one of the exceptions to the community property rule.

Examples of sole and separate property include the following:

    • Property Acquired Prior to the Marriage
    • Inheritances
    • Gifts
    • Portions of Personal Injury Awards

In rare cases, property can be considered both community and sole and separate property. A house purchased prior to the marriage can be classified as one spouses’ sole and separate property, but the community may have an interest in a portion of the appreciation of the house or reduction on the mortgage by funds acquired during the marriage.

Division of Debt

The division of debt during a divorce proceeding is very similar to the division of property. Debt incurred prior to the marriage or after the date of service is considered sole and separate debt and is the sole responsibility of the spouses incurring the debt. Any debt incurred during the marriage will be considered community debt and both spouses are equally responsible for the debt, regardless of who incurs it. However, there are exceptions in cases where one spouse has committed community waste by making excessive expenditures that did not benefit the community.

Need Assistance with Division of Property and Debt?

As a dedicated family law practice, the Law Office of Austin White is committed to providing informative advice regarding the division of property and debt during your divorce.  We will guide you through the divorce process as smoothly and as cost-effectively as possible. Please do not hesitate to contact family law attorney Austin White with any questions at (480) 788-0633, or by filling out our online form here.