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What Is Community Property Law?

Community property refers to the legal status of property acquired by a married couple under Civil Law. Community property law typically dictates that property is owned jointly by married couples regardless of marriage roles.

Community property states in the U.S. include Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin. In these states, properties that have been acquired during the course of the marriage even though only one spouse earned or paid for those properties are considered as community property states. Community property law basically explains the community properties involved between couples and agreements that go with it as well.

This kind of property, as what was stated above, is only possible between spouses. Those properties, however, owned by a spouse before he or she got married is referred to as a separate property. It can only be considered a community property if it is converted into one or if this kind of property is acquired during the course of marriage which means that it is automatically referred to as one as it was acquired when the couple was already married.

Once the property is considered to be community, the spouses are given equal shares. In other words, they each own approximately half of the property and both could equally benefit from it. Ultimately, if the married couple decides to divorce due to irreconcilable differences and other marital issues that can could not settle, their community properties would again be divided equally as stated in the Community Property Law.

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