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Question: Is Arizona a common-law marriage state? If two seniors have been living together for more than ten years without being married and one passes away, will the living senior be responsible for the debts of the deceased.

Answer:

Common law marriage does not exist in Arizona. In order to be considered married in Arizona, a couple must obtain a license to marry and have a ceremony as approved by the laws of Arizona, to make the relationship legal (called solemnization). (A.R.S. § 25-111)

Arizona is a community property state, so in the case of a married couple, generally, each spouse is responsible for the debts that the other spouse incurs. But because common law marriages do not meet the legal requirements of a valid marriage, there is no community property between the two people, and also no responsibility for paying the debts of the other person, as long as neither person has guaranteed the debts of the other.

January 25, 2007

Comments

On 5/11/10
 said
Arizona has specific statutes that explain how a marriage is created in this state. Arizona does not have common law marriage. See Title 25 of the Arizona Revised Statutes for Arizona marriage laws.

On 5/9/10
Margaret Roberts said
Has this law been updated or does it still exist?

On 3/28/09
Angela said
There is no common law in Arizona. Any 'update' to a law would be to remove common law marriage, not add it, as it is an archaic system brought over from English law in the days of the pilgrims! There are only a few states that even still practice it

On 10/13/07
Ruby said
This means that there is no common law in az? but I am still wondering how can i be sure this law has not been updated