FACTS:

Husband and wife are contemplating a divorce, but a petition for dissolution has not been filed. Wife is moving out and would like to enter into a one-year lease with a landlord. The landlord is requiring that both the husband and the wife obligate themselves on the lease.

ISSUE:

Can the landlord require that both the husband and wife sign the lease?

ANSWER:

Yes. Generally, either spouse may separately acquire, manage, control or dispose of community property or bind the community. See A.R.S. § 25-214(C). However, joint signature of the spouses is required for any acquisition, disposition or encumbrance of an interest in real property, including a lease for one year or more. See A.R.S. § 25-214(C)(1). Here, the wife, while still married and although contemplating a divorce, seeks to sign a lease agreement for a one-year term. In order to do so, under A.R.S. § 25-214, both spouses must sign the lease and be bound by the lease.

Arizona REALTOR® Magazine – May 2014 | Landlord/Tenant


About the Author

Michelle Lind

K. Michelle Lind, CEO of Arizona REALTORS®, is also an attorney, State Bar of Arizona board certified real estate specialist, and the author of Arizona Real Estate: A Professional’s Guide to Law and Practice.
Please note that this article is of a general nature and may not be updated or revised for accuracy as statutory or case law changes following the date of first publication. Further, this article reflects only the opinion of the author, is not intended as definitive legal advice and you should not act upon it without seeking independent legal counsel.