At age 18, you can marry without consent of your parents.
Q: Do I need a marriage license? Why can’t we just say our vows to each other?
A: Marriage is also a legal contract between a man and a woman for life. You apply for the license at the clerk of the superior court in any Arizona county (ARS §25-121).
Q: Once I have the license, what else do I need?
A: A marriage ceremony (generally by a clergyman, judge or other person authorized by law to conduct marriages) held before the expiration of the marriage license, which is one year (ARS §25-121 (B)).
- Two witnesses who are also at least eighteen years of age, to participate in the ceremony.
- The marriage license signed by both people being married, the two witnesses to the marriage ceremony, and the person who conducted the marriage, who must return the signed marriage license to the clerk of the superior court for recording (ARS §§25-111,124,125).
Q: What is community property?
A: In Arizona, all property acquired by either husband or wife during the marriage is the community property of the husband and wife, including wages. Community property is the equal property of both spouses. Although this is a community property state, there is still separate property, which includes:
- Property owned by one spouse prior to the marriage. This remains that spouse’s separate property unless commingled with community assets.
- Property obtained by one spouse during a marriage, by way of a gift or inheritance that is “ear-marked” for that spouse.
- A judgment for a spouse’s personal injuries would also be separate property (ARS §§25-211,213).
Q: Who is responsible for paying the bills?
A: Both spouses have equal management and control over the community property, and have equal responsibility for community debts. And, both have an obligation to provide for the support of the other and of all minor children. Either spouse may be responsible for necessities furnished to the other or their minor children (ARS §§25214,501).
Laws may have changed since the last time this article was updated. The current and most up-to-date laws can be accessed here.