Arizona Senate Bill (SB) 1458

Spouses; married couples; terminology

Introduced by:
Senators Hobbs: Dalessandro, Otondo, Peshlakai; Representative Alston

AMENDING SECTIONS 7-102, 8-103, 8-805, 10-1623, 10-2058, 10-2060, 11‑1134, 12‑612, 12‑2231, 12-2232, 13-1408, 13-3609, 13-4062, 14-1201, 14‑2802, 14‑2804, 14‑3101, 14-5426, 14-9106, 23-805, 23-1046, 23-1064, 25‑101, 25‑211, 25‑314, 25‑1060, 25‑1256, 32-2101, 33-405, 33-431, 33-452, 33‑454, 33-457, 36‑301, 36‑334, 36‑832, 42‑2079, 43‑301, 43-309, 43-310, 43‑311, 43-432, 43-562, 43-943, 43-1022, 43‑1041, 43‑1043, 43-1083, 43‑1086, 43‑1088, 43-1089, 43-1089.01, 43-1089.02, 43‑1089.03 AND 46-453, ARIZONA REVISED STATUTES; RELATING TO MARRIED COUPLES.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:


This act amends 55 sections of the Arizona Revised Statutes.

The majority of changes in this bill are designed to use more gender-inclusive words.

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Section 1.
Section 7-102, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:

7-102. Qualification of sureties
A bond shall not be approved if executed by individual sureties unless the sureties appear upon ON the tax roll of the county for an amount at least equal to the penalty of any other judicial bonds upon ON which they may already be sureties. If a surety is married, the bond shall be signed by both husband and wife SPOUSES.


Bonds can’t be approved by anyone who owes more than the bond.

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Sec. 2.
Section 8-103, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:

8-103. Who may adopt

  1. Any adult resident of this state, whether married, unmarried or legally separated, is eligible to qualify to adopt children. A husband and wife MARRIED COUPLE may jointly adopt children.
  2. An adult nonresident of this state, whether married, unmarried or legally separated, is eligible to qualify to adopt a child if all of the following apply:
    1. The child is a dependent child and currently under the jurisdiction of the juvenile court in this state.
    2. The child currently resides in the home of the applicant.
    3. The department placed the child in the home of the applicant pursuant to section 8‑548.
    4. The department recommends the adoption of the child by the applicant.
    5. The foster care review board has reviewed the child's case as required by section 8‑515.03, except that the court may not delay the child's adoption if the foster care review board has not reviewed the child's case.
  3. Pursuant to rules adopted by the department, the department or adoption agency shall place a child in an adoptive home that best meets the safety, social, emotional, physical and mental health needs of the child. Other relevant factors for consideration, in no order of preference, shall include:
    1. The marital status and the length and stability of the marital relationship of the prospective adoptive parents.
    2. Placement with the child's siblings pursuant to section 8‑862.
    3. Established relationships between the child and the prospective adoptive family as described in section 8‑862, including placement with a grandparent or another member of the child's extended family, including a person or foster parent who has a significant relationship with the child.
    4. The prospective adoptive family's ability to meet the child's safety, social, emotional, physical and mental health needs and the ability to financially provide for the child.
    5. The wishes of the child who is twelve years of age or older.
    6. The wishes of the child's birth parents unless the rights of the parent have been terminated or the court has established a case plan of severance and adoption.
    7. The availability of relatives, the child's current or former foster parents or other significant persons to provide support to the prospective adoptive family and child.
  4. If all relevant factors are equal and the choice is between a married man and woman COUPLE certified to adopt and a single adult certified to adopt, placement preference shall be with a THE married man and woman COUPLE.
  5. In each adoption proceeding, the court shall make findings on the record regarding the best interests of the child pursuant to law.


Almost all adults can adopt children, as long as certain conditions are true.

Adoption agencies use certain factors to make the best decision possible, like how stable the couple is, the child’s wishes, and more.

Married couples get adoption priority over singles.

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Sec. 57.
Legislative intent

This act replaces the term "husband and wife" or similar terminology in each of the statutes in which it appears in the Arizona Revised Statutes. It is the intent of the legislature that agencies, boards, commissions, departments, officers and other administrative units of this state make similar changes in their respective administrative rules.


The majority of changes in this bill are designed to replace “husband and wife” and similar terms with more gender-inclusive words.

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