The divorce process can be complex, and the procedures vary depending on each state and its laws. However, all states require a judge to review and approve the divorce agreement or, if the couples cannot agree on a settlement, to determine how property will be divided. For this reason, it’s strongly advised that you do your research before starting this process.
According to the Law Office of Cosmas Onyia – Divorce Lawyer In Phoenix, Arizona is a no-fault state; thus, there’s no need to provide any reason for the divorce or have your spouse’s consent. If you plan on filing for divorce, you have to know that Arizona is a 50-50 state, meaning that all assets or obligations acquired during the marriage will be divided equitably during the divorce. Unlike some jurisdictions with community property laws, Arizona requires a fair allocation of shared assets during a divorce, which will often be approximately proportional.
The property division in a divorce will depend on how it’s classified. The only asset divided between the spouses is communal property. After a divorce, each spouse will keep their separate property.
What Is Considered ‘Community Property’ In Arizona?
All possessions and debts acquired by the couple while they were married and until their separation are considered community property. Community assets may consist of houses or other real estate properties, money, salaries and other sources of income, cars, household furniture, household appliances, investments, or other valuable possessions.
What Is Considered ‘Separate Property’ In Arizona?
Any assets obtained by each spouse before the marriage, through inheritance, or those the couple agrees are separate property are excluded from the 50-50 distribution.
Classified as separate property might be any asset covered by a legal prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, any asset that either spouse possessed before the marriage or received as an inheritance or gift before, during, or after the marriage.
How Does The 50-50 Distribution Work?
In the case of a divorce, it would be ideal for the spouses to reach a common point regarding the division of possessions, but that is only sometimes possible. In this instance, a judge must split the parties’ assets and obligations fairly and equitably if the spouses cannot agree.
But even so, it can not be guaranteed that possessions and obligations will always be divided equally. The community property between the divorcing parties must be divided ‘equitably.’ However, an equitable split does not necessarily imply an equal divide.
There are some specific circumstances in a divorce in Arizona where it’s fair and reasonable not to split assets and debts equally. These situations usually arise when the court determines that one spouse wasted, purposely damaged, or hid community property.
Therefore, even if Arizona is a 50-50 state in divorce, an equal division of possessions is not always possible for various reasons that may appear during the process. That’s why hiring a divorce attorney is the wisest decision in the case of such an event. To better understand how everything works in a divorce and the benefits or risks of each action, search for a divorce lawyer to guide you through the whole process. Remember that even pre-nuptial agreements can be disputed with a good lawyer.