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Arkansas Child Custody Questions & Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: Once you file a Warning Order and the Defendant doesn't respond. Can the judge handle matter's dealing with children?

I am the biological mother and defendant is not but on the birth certificate. She has a no contact order for slapping child across the face at 17 months old

Richard Lane Hughes answered on May 11, 2018

Yes. However, the Judge will still be guided by "the best interests of the child(ren)."

That is, a court what is best for the kids regardless of a default by a parent.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: What can be done if a 6 week summer visitation conflicts with required extra curricular school practices?

The ncp lives 2 states, 20 hour drive, away and the 13 year-old is on the cheerleading team. She only has 4 weeks in a row free from practice. The visitation agreement states 6 weeks in the summer. This was mediated when the child was 6. What options does the custodial parent have?

Stewart Whaley answered on May 6, 2018

The best option will always be mutual agreement.

Options:

1. Quit the activity.

2. Talk to the NCP and work out a schedule that gets the NCP 6 weeks total time (3 and 3, 4 and 2, etc) or some other arrangement. If you can both agree to an alternate schedule, 6 contiguous...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Custody and DUI / DWI for Arkansas on

Q: Can you the other parent file for emergency custody if the other parent got a DWI but the kids were not in his care

W. Whitfield Hyman answered on Apr 15, 2018

You can, I don't think any judge would grant it.

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: How many hours of parenting classes are required by the state of Arkansas when seeking joint parental rights

Stewart Whaley answered on Apr 14, 2018

The court may require parents attend at least two hours of parenting class, or, submit to mediation. By the way, the TransParenting course usually assigned in Pulaski County is 4 hours.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Arkansas on

Q: I been trying to see my daughter and take care of her but her mother won’t let me since I’ve moved on with my life

And gotten married my daughter turned a year in March and I couldn’t see her or talk to her because of her mother I have messages in my phone that she sent saying my daughter won’t be in my life anymore now she sent child support papers in the mail but won’t give me a chance to see it take... Read more »

Stewart Whaley answered on Apr 14, 2018

If paternity has been established (if not, it will be by the time you are paying child support) you can petition the court for visitation. You'll need to prove several factors, including: you are a fit parent, can care for and nurture the child, provide financial support, etc.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Child Support for Arkansas on

Q: Can a ncp agree to sign over rights and not have to pay back child support in Arkansas?

My youngest son's dad just spent 65 days in jail due to non payment of child support. Within a few days of him getting out he contacted a family friend and wanted to get ahold of me And asked if I agreed to drop all back child support he would sign over rights to my son. Is this possible and what... Read more »

James E Hensley Jr answered on Mar 19, 2018

This can be done with a single-parent adoption. It sounds odd but what you do is adopt your own child. This gets rid of the father and his rights. If the father will sign all the documents, we can get this done a few weeks. Fees are between $3ooo and $5ooo depending on what is needed.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: Ive been helping taking care of this little girl since she was 8 months at first it started with me just having her on

The weekends to help her mom out cause at the time she was a single parent and didnt really have that much support. Well through out the years i started keeping her more and more like during the week because mom was going through a hard time so i would buy her dieapers wipes food cloths you name if... Read more »

James E Hensley Jr answered on Feb 28, 2018

Very good with the facts you mentioned.

Jim Hensley

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: Can my ex legal become my son's father without me having to marry him?

My son is 10 years old. His biological has never been in the picture. When my son was 8 month's I met a man that adored him. Even though we are not together now he has been helping me with my son, takes him to school, spends weekends with him, everything a father should do. We were better as... Read more »

James E Hensley Jr answered on Feb 10, 2018

It is nice that you are considering your son's well-being over your self-interest. Lawyers don't see that too often. You have a couple options. The best is to have this man adopt your son. We will need to locate the biological father to sign off on the adoption. There are other options if you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: How do I go about this?

My husband cheated on me with another girl. She found out she's pregnant. Her and her husband doesn't want it. Her and her husband is willing to terminate their rights. She said when it's born she doesn't even want to hold it. I know for a fact it's my husband's baby. They can't afford to take care... Read more »

Skye Martin answered on Jan 27, 2018

I recommend seeking an attorney for a private adoption.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: My ex and I have joint legal custody but our kids want to live with me, they're 11 and 13. Can they choose in AR?

I had residential custody of them up until this summer when my husband and I started building a house. They were staying with their dad because their rooms weren't made yet and he asked if I would be willing to change the papers just until my house was finished and they could come back to me but... Read more »

Skye Martin answered on Jan 27, 2018

The preference of the children could be a factor, but it’s less likely when they’re still so young. Child custody is determined by the best interest of the child and there are a list of factors that judges consider. I recommend consulting an attorney to determine your best strategy for getting... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Divorce and Family Law for Arkansas on

Q: if me and my ex spouse have not went to court to change our divorce papers do we still have to follow by the one we have

Skye Martin answered on Jan 27, 2018

Yes, but there may be an exception. It depends on what you’re trying to change and your decree.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody, Child Support and Domestic Violence for Arkansas on

Q: My ex lIves in Texas and I live here in Arkansas, I have a two month old baby who was born here in this state. Now he

Wants to take my son away from me and take him to Texas with him, I want to stop answering his messages but he says I could get in trouble if I do, is that true,? What can I do to keep him away from us,? My son has my last name, I left him because he treat me bad during my pregnancy until I left... Read more »

James E Hensley Jr answered on Dec 26, 2017

It's always complicated when you are being mistreated by the man who should love you and the baby with no conditions. I can only answer some of your questions because the answer depends on a lot of things. Let's see if we can help a bit.

If the child has lived in Arkansas for the last six...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: we are trying to get our neice from lawrence co. dhs and they refuse to return our calls. we have filled out the papers.

She was placed in the walnut ridge childrens home when her dad went to jail,( her mom doe's not have legal custody of her either) we went to lawrence co. dhs & filled out the paperwork. They will not return our call's and we called the children's home, they told us she is no longer there. We want... Read more »

James E Hensley Jr answered on Dec 19, 2017

It is certainly time for an attorney. You should expect fees between $4500 and $6000. And realize that once DHS has a case, they sort of rule the case. That means they will make recommendations to the Court and the Court usually goes along with it. That being said, you can petition the Court to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: For child abandonment do you have to file for terminated rights or is it automatic when they have no contact or support

My sons 3, his bio dad hasn't seen him since he was 3 months old, he's not on birth certificate and hadn't established paternity, my significant other wants to adopt him, but we're not married yet but plan to be, do I need to terminate rights or have they already been terminated and do we have... Read more »

James E Hensley Jr answered on Nov 26, 2017

You have to file adoption papers. You do not have to be married. You can adopt the children yourselves. Or you can have your significant other adopt them. Expect total costs to be around $4000 to $5000 if you can't find the bio dad. $4000 if he will consent.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: Can a pardoned felon be a guardian in Arkansas?

Skye Martin answered on Oct 19, 2017

Theoretically, yes. Arkansas law specifies that “unpardoned” felons cannot be guardians. Ark. Code Ann. § 28-65-203.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: If I'm on the birth certificate, as the biological father, can I pick up my child from a grandparents or daycare center?

I haven't seen my 11 month old daughter in 33 days my ex fiance is hiding her from me just being vindictive for our breakup. I've read that with no standing custody order from the courts, that I have 50% rights to my daughter. And that I can pick her up from any location with proof of paternity and... Read more »

Skye Martin answered on Oct 19, 2017

You’ll need to file a petition to establish paternity. A birth certificate alone is not enough. You have no right to the child if you were never married to the child’s mother until you establish paternity. Then you can ask for visitation or custody.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: I travel for work and need new husband to be able to make legal decisions for my son. Can he be named a legal guardian?

I travel extensively for work and would like to know my new husband can take care of my son while I am gone (medical, school, etc). Can we name him as a legal guardian as well or do we have to do adoption proceedings for him to be able to make these decisions? Birth father not listed on certificate... Read more »

James E Hensley Jr answered on Sep 12, 2017

There is nothing needed to get your child to school or for medical intervention. Adoption is an option but so is a power of attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Arkansas on

Q: How do I get emergency guardianship of a horribly emotionally abused 15 year old who is thinking of suicide

This child lives with his grandmother who is horribly abusive, mentally and emotionally. She told this child, earlier this week, she would rather kill him than put up with him. This child is so depressed he told my son that he is thinking of ending his life. How can I go about getting emergency... Read more »

Skye Martin answered on Sep 3, 2017

You'll need to file a petition for guardianship with the circuit court of the county where the child lives.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Arkansas on

Q: If I'm playing child support for my child, what rights do I have to him ñ? he is 7 yrs old

His mother has my number blocked when I want to call n talk to him I can't cuz I can't get in touch with his mother

Skye Martin answered on Aug 3, 2017

You need to petition for visitation and/or a shared custody arrangement. Paying child support doesn't give you visitation rights. I would suggest contacting an attorney to go over your options.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Child Support for Arkansas on

Q: My grandchildren were removed by dcfs and place with us and my daughter gave us full custody can we adopt now

My daughter only wanted dcfs out of the way so she could still visit and her rights not be terminated

James E Hensley Jr answered on Jun 29, 2017

Thank you for your inquiry. There are a few procedural issues we will need to consider but this is a good time to begin the adoption. Costs are around $4000. Let me know how I might help.

Jim Hensley

501.766.2770

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