Community Property Legal Meaning and Definition

Here is a simplified definition of the legal term Community Property.

Community Property (noun): This is a legal term used primarily in some states of the U.S., referring to property acquired by a married couple during their marriage. It is typically regarded as equally owned by both partners, irrespective of who paid for it or whose name is on the ownership documents. It excludes property inherited, gifted specifically to one spouse, or possessed by either spouse prior to marriage. Community property may be split evenly in cases of divorce or the death of a spouse. Individual property can become community property through an agreement between the spouses. This system aims for fairness between spouses, independent of individual income variation.