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Arkansas Divorce Facts

When going through a divorce in in Arkansas, it's helpful to have some key information. Below you will find some of the most important facts everyone getting a divorce in the state of Arkansas should know. The facts listed here are only a selected few of the more comprehensive set of Arkansas Divorce Laws available for your reference. Remember, every state's law is different, and if you're not sure about a law in your state, you should ask a qualified Arkansas Divorce Professional.

  • Anyone filing a complaint for divorce must be an Arkansas resident for at least 60 days. A witness is required to testify in court that a party has lived in Arkansas for at least 60 days.
  • There is no legal provision for mediation.
  • The Chancery Court divides the couple's marital estate. The court orders an equitable division of property acquired during the marriage. This does not necessarily mean a 50/50 split. The court examines both spouses circumstances and contributions to the marriage when deciding how to divide the property. When the court divides the property, the judge does not divide any property acquired before the marriage. Therefore, it is important to document what property each spouse owns and when it was acquired.
  • The court may decide that one spouse needs support from the other in order to meet basic living expenses. Generally, spousal support ends when the receiving spouse remarries or dies.
  • Divorcing parents are required to take a parenting class. If requested, the court issues a temporary order to provide for the children. The temporary order will only be in effect until the judge signs the divorce decree. A typical temporary order requires that the children's lives not be disrupted by their parents' divorce. For example, the temporary order may require that the children live in the same home and attend the same school as when their parents were living together.
  • Courts consider several factors in deciding child custody, including the child's wishes and concerns, the child's relationship with their parents, siblings, and extended family, the child's adjustment and development at home, school, and in the community, the mental, physical, and emotional health of the parents, child, and siblings, the wishes and concerns of the parents, parental abuse or neglect and parental failure to pay support.
  • Parents have an obligation to provide financial support for all minor children. The court enforces this obligation regardless of the gender of the parent. For instance, the court does not automatically assume that the father must pay child support to the mother. If it is in the best interests of the children, the court orders a mother to pay child support to the father. In circumstances where the child lives with neither parent, the court will order both parents to pay child support to whomever the child lives with. The court relies upon the Arkansas Child Support Worksheet to determine how much a parent must pay to support their children.
  • The court will modify a support order to meet changes in the needs of the children.

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