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The necessaries doctrine does not apply when a couple has separated pursuant to a formal agreement that does not require one spouse to support the other spouse. A necessity depends upon the couple's station in life. Very wealthy couples could claim servants to be a necessary. A spouse's separate property be liable under the necessaries doctrine for contracts made by third parties for the benefit of the other spouse. Until recently, most laws only made liability dependent on the other spouse contracting for the services. Today, the spouse is liable if third parties contract on behalf of the other spouse. A spouse whose separate property is taken under the necessaries doctrine can get reimbursement. The spouse can get reimbursement when nonexempt community or separate property of the other spouse in need is available. Under the necessaries doctrine, the spouse whose separate property goes to pay for necessaries can compel a creditor to take community property first. Under the necessaries doctrine, the order of property seizure is: 1. Community property. 2. The separate property of the spouse in need. 3. Quasi-community property. 4. The separate property of the spouse who is not in need.

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