After the effective date of the Pennsylvania Community Property Act the husband used income from his separate property to pay part of an advance installment on a life insurance policy acquired before the act. He afterward assigned the policy to the plaintiff. The insurance company refused to recognize the validity of the assignment without the wife's consent on the basis that the income from separate property became community property so as to give the wife an interest in the policy. The Pennsylvania Community Property Act provided, inter alia, that: (1) the separate property of each spouse shall consist of that property held before marriage or before the effective date of the act, whichever is later, and property acquired afterward by gift, devise, or bequest; (2) that all property acquired during marriage shall be community property except that which is separate property; (3) that each spouse shall have management and control of his or her separate property as well as that portion of community property consisting of fruits of his or her separate property. The act also gave extensive rights of control over other community property to the husband, and an earlier statute denied suits by one spouse against the other except in proceedings to obtain separate property or for divorce. In a friendly suit to contest the validity of the Community Property Act the plaintiff sought an injunction requiring the insurance company to recognize his ownership. Held, the entire act is unconstitutional, and the injunction should be granted. Willcox v. Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co., (Pa. 1947) 55 A. (2d) 521.
Richard J. Archer,
COMMUNITY PROPERTY-CONSTITUTIONALITY OF THE PENNSYLVANIA COMMUNITY PROPERTY ACT,
Mich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mlr/vol46/iss3/9