10 Laws You Should Know If You're in Arizona
Arizona was the last of the 48 contiguous states to join the union (in 1912) and, at least in that sense, represents one of the final vestiges of the infamous "Wild West."
And even though the gunfight at the OK Corral -- located in Tombstone, Arizona -- occurred more than 130 years ago, there is still a touch of the Wild West to be found in Arizona's state laws. Whether you're heading to Arizona to watch a little Major League Baseball spring training or residing permanently in the Grand Canyon state, there are some laws you should be familiar with.
Here are 10 laws you should know if you're in Arizona:
- Permit not required for concealed weapons. Arizona's gun laws are among the least restrictive in the United States. Under Arizona law, any person 21 or older who is not prohibited from doing so may carry a concealed weapon without a permit.
- Super extreme DUIs. Although many states have laws charging drivers with aggravated or extreme DUI when they are found to have extremely high BACs or other aggravating factors, Arizona has an even higher level of criminal charge: super extreme DUI. Under Arizona law, a driver can be charged with super extreme DUI when the driver's BAC is 0.20 percent or higher.
- Immigration laws. Arizona also has some of the toughest immigration laws in the county. Police officers in Arizona are required to check the immigration status of individuals whenever "reasonable suspicion exists" that a person may be in the country unlawfully.
- Choice of execution methods. Convicted criminals sentenced to the death penalty in Arizona can choose between two methods of execution: lethal gas or lethal injection.
- Corporal punishment allowed. Arizona is one of a handful of states that still allows corporal punishment in public schools. Under Arizona law, disciplinary procedures are decided by individual school district governing boards, though there is no state prohibition on corporal punishment being used.
- Gambling allowed on tribal lands. Most forms of gambling are outlawed in Arizona. However, Arizona has more Native American tribal land than any other U.S. state and under federal law, gambling is allowed in Indian reservation casinos.
- Low gas tax, high cigarette tax. Arizona's 18-cent tax per gallon of gas is substantially lower than that of many neighboring states such as California. However, the state's cigarette tax rate of $1.18 per pack is relatively high, and has fueled a black market for cheaper cigarettes from Arizona's Indian reservations.
- Same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriage become legal in Arizona earlier this year when the Arizona attorney general instructed county clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples following a federal court ruling.
- Medical marijuana. Arizona is one of a growing number of states that permits the medical use of marijuana. Under Arizona's medical marijuana laws, patients with written certification from a physician can possess up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana.
- Community property laws. Arizona is a community property state, meaning that income or property acquired by either spouse during a marriage -- with some exceptions, such as income derived from a spouse's separate property or inheritance -- is the property of both spouses. Without an agreement like a prenup in place, community property is divided equitably upon divorce.
Learn more about Arizona state laws at FindLaw's Learn About the Law section on Arizona Law.
- Browse Arizona Lawyers, Attorneys, and Law Firms (FindLaw)
- What Are Aggravated, Extreme DUIs? (FindLaw's Blotter)
- No Concealed Weapons Permit Required in Arizona (FindLaw's Blotter)
- On Again, Off Again Arizona Execution Lasts Two Hours (FindLaw's U.S. Ninth Circuit Blog)
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