Idaho is a community-property state. These laws apply to anyone domiciled in Idaho or owning real property (real estate) located in Idaho. The laws affect how you and your spouse file your federal and state income tax returns.
The information below only discusses treatment of community property under Idaho law. Other community-property states have their own community-property laws.
Your domicile is the place you have your permanent home and where you intend to return whenever you’re away.
You and your spouse can be domiciled in different states. The laws of the state where a spouse is domiciled determine how the law views assets in a marriage.
Read more about domicile in the Idaho Residency Status guide
Community property is owned by the “community” of the marriage, which means both spouses. Generally, community property is property — including income — that either you or your spouse acquires during the marriage. But community property excludes some property you acquire during marriage.
Separate property is any of these things:
- Property that you or your spouse owned separately before your marriage.
- Property that you or your spouse received separately as a gift or inheritance, even if you received it after you were married.
- Property either you or your spouse bought using separate-property funds.
- Money either you or your spouse earned while domiciled in a separate-property state.
- All property listed as separate in a valid written prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.
You must keep separate property separate from other assets. Separate property can lose its separate character despite any written agreements if, for example, you do either of the following:
- You or your spouse uses the property for community purposes.
- You or your spouse mixes separate income and expenses with community income and expenses.
Please note that income from separate property is considered community property if you, your spouse, or you and your spouse are domiciled in Idaho, unless you and your spouse have agreed in writing to keep this income separate.
Laws and rules
Learn more about community property:
- Idaho Code section 32‑906, Domestic Relations — Husband and Wife – Separate and Community Property