Mitchell v. Mitchell

In Mitchell v. Mitchell, 152 Ariz. 312, 732 P.2d 203 (App. 1985), vacated in part by 152 Ariz. 317, 732 P.2d 208 (1985), the court addressed the use of future earning capacity in a marriage dissolution to value one spouse's goodwill in a partnership interest. The court found that "future earnings and/or earning capacity is not an asset to be valued and divided as community property . . . ." Id. at 316, 732 P.2d at 207. However, the court did not find that future earnings were not definable as an asset; rather the court's holding was simply that distribution of future earnings upon dissolution of marriage was inappropriate because to do so would amount to characterizing post-marital earnings as community property. Id. Moreover, the supreme court vacated the appellate court's findings that goodwill is not a community asset and affirmed the trial court's method of valuation. Id. at 321, 323, 732 P.2d at 212, 214.