RCW 26.16.200 Interpretation

In Watters v. Doud, 92 Wn.2d 317, 596 P.2d 280 (1979), the Court held that the three-year time limitation found in the 1969 provisos to RCW 26.16.200 could not be tolled. In dicta the Watters court stated: The effect of the general statute prior to the 1969 amendment was that immediately upon a debtor's marriage, a creditor lost the ability to enforce the claim against the new marital community. This rule was harsh, but it served "to assure the community enough integrity to allow development without handicaps unrelated to its own undertakings." Watters, 92 Wn.2d at 322 (quoting Recent Developments, 45 Wash. L. Rev. 192 (1970)). RCW 26.16.200 was also briefly addressed in Escrow Serv. Co., Inc. v. Cressler, 59 Wn.2d 38, 365 P.2d 760 (1961), wherein the Court noted: Under this statute RCW 26.16.200, community property has never been held liable for the separate obligation of either spouse. A partial list of the cases which hold that the community is not liable for the separate debt of the husband is as follows . . . .Id. at 42.