Common ownership is a legal principle that applies to Washington and eight other states. In these countries, a spouse or registered national partner owns 50% of the total assets acquired during the marriage or domestic partnership. Unless the couple has agreed otherwise in writing, this includes money earned during marriage or domestic partnership and anything that was purchased with that money. If you divorce, how your property is distributed depends on whether or not you exist in a state of co-ownership. Co-ownership agreements change the nature of all the property of one of the two spouses in collective ownership. When a partner owned a separate property after signing the co-ownership contract, that separate property is the property of the conjugal community. In case of inefficiency, it is necessary to carry out an additional succession in the State where the property is located. The co-ownership contract offers the means to obtain what most people understand, which is provided for in the fundamental laws of collective property: the forfeiture of all the patrimony on the surviving spouse after death. If the personal representative follows the right steps in a surrender procedure in Washington, there is a strict requirement that creditors must assert claims against the estate within 4 months, otherwise they will lose their rights forever. This benefit is lost if an estate does not go through succession, so that if a couple has established a co-ownership contract instead of executing wills, creditors may have much more time to assert their claims against the couple`s property. In addition, the change in the nature of separate ownership in co-ownership means that any formerly separated property is subject to the debt of the conjugal community and that creditors of a spouse or national partner will be able to recover from the common property, even though they might not have been able to attain it if they had remained separate property. “But Washington is a state of common ownership, so why do I need a community prosperity agreement?” Good question….