Community property with the right of survivorship is one method of taking title in Arizona. Community property with the right of survivorship means that you and your spouse own exactly one-half of an undivided interest in the property, but upon death of one of the spouses, the surviving spouse is conveyed the entire property.
There are nine States that recognize “community property”: Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.
In the 1990’s, the Arizona Legislature passed a law that authorized ownership of real property by a husband and wife as “community property with right of survivorship.” The traditional forms of ownership by a husband and wife of real property in Arizona had been as “husband and wife” or as “joint tenancy with right of survivorship.” The disadvantage of ownership as husband and wife was that probate was normally required, and the disadvantage of ownership as joint tenancy with right of survivorship was that there were adverse tax consequences for individuals with significant assets. These disadvantages were eliminated if property was held as community property with right of survivorship, and therefore this form of ownership has become the popular form of ownership by a husband and wife of real property in Arizona.