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Arkansas Family Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on
Q: There's not a cohabitation clause in my divorce/ custody order. Everything is final now. But could I get in trouble?

My ex said that that that if my fiance moves in and spends the night while I have my kids, he is going to press contempt of court charges on me. But there is nothing in our divorce or custody papers saying my fiancee can't live here or spend the night while my kids are here.

Stewart Whaley
Stewart Whaley answered on Jun 2, 2020

If it is not addressed in the divorce or custody document you wouldn't be in contempt (it is frequently included, so make SURE that is the case). However, he can ask the court for a modification to restrict cohabitation.

I would expect that to be successful. Conservative state,...
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Arkansas on
Q: What would my best option be between getting emancipated or a transfer of guardianship?

I’m 17 (will be 18 in October) and completely finished with high school. I’m enrolled in college. I have a full time job and my house is almost completely finished for me to move into. My aunt has legal guardianship of me. Due to personal reasons, I no longer wish to be under her roof and wish... Read more »

Paul Dumas
Paul Dumas answered on May 26, 2020

Sounds like you should pursue emancipation.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Family Law, Personal Injury and Education Law for Arkansas on
Q: I've looked everywhere just to find if its legal or illegal to have a polyamous marriage in Arkansas?

2 woman and 1 man that love each other so much

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar answered on May 22, 2020

Polygamy is generally regarded as a crime. This is something a criminal attorney would understand the significance of more so than attorneys in the categories chosen above.

Tim Akpinar

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Arkansas on
Q: My child is in DHS custody do I have the right to sign over my custody or let someone adopt him
James E Hensley Jr
James E Hensley Jr answered on May 14, 2020

Until the DHS case is closed it is doubtful any other action will be considered. I understand you want to get the child out of DHS involvement but filing such an action will not help you in the DHS case. Typically you will have an attorney appointed in the DHS case. If so, you probably don't... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: Bio Dad hasn’t seen my daughter in 14 months because of a order of protection. Can my husband adopt her? 10 years old.

He agreed to the order. He got arrested for felony stalking his wife. He has 5 other orders of protection. He has gone to rehab twice in the past 3 years for drug and substance abuse problems.

Paul Dumas
Paul Dumas answered on Mar 13, 2020

While your question is about adoption, in Arkansas you first have to address termination of parental rights, in this case the father’s. Under Arkansas law, besides death, there are only two ways a parent’s rights can be terminated. First, if they sign a written Consent that meets the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: My son recently turned 18 and he's Autistic. How do I apply for guardianship or power of attorney?
Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Feb 10, 2020

If your son is autistic, you will likely need a guardianship (as opposed to a power of attorney). A guardianship is a court order giving someone authority to make decisions for someone else. It can be over someone's person, estate, or both. It is like having custody over a child, but can... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support and Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: Can someone be charged with child support if there are allegations that the child is not yours biologically?

My fiance was just served with a summons regarding child support that was on a child that might not be his. I am just wondering if we can prove that he is not the father, can she still charge him with child support.

Stewart Whaley
Stewart Whaley answered on Feb 5, 2020

he needs to request a court-ordered paternity test performed as part of the child support action. If it excludes him from being the father, he will be fine. Of course, if it does not, he will be adjudicated the father and owe support.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: Do co-guardians of a minor have to be married to each other?

I want to be a co guardian to my 15 yr old granddaughter along with her step father. I need to know if there is case study on this and if so, what.

Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Jan 23, 2020

In Arkansas, you can be co-guardians of a person's estate without being married. However, you cannot be co-guardian of the person unless you are married.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: Can I file a petition to change legal guardianship of my 17 year old to his grandparents. We are moving and he stay

He wants to stay with them to finish high school there. Is it process we can do ourselves through clerk or do we need to obtain a lawyer?

Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Jan 3, 2020

You probably can achieve what you need with a power of attorney, as opposed to a guardianship. A POA can give the grandparents authority to make decisions for your son, such as school and medical. It is simpler and cheaper than a guardianship and won't require court action. I have POA for... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: I am going through a divorce. MY spouse and I have had 3 sexual encounters but he tells me not to tell anyone, why?/

We have no "video" proof, but some texts where we have met or driving to meet eachother, texts as well saying he cant stop thinking of me since he saw me the night before...

Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Dec 12, 2019

One of the requirements for divorce is that you are separated from your spouse. Generally that means that you are no longer having a sexual relationship. If you all are still having sex, it could prevent you and your spouse from obtaining a divorce. Hope this helps.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: I have found more information about fathers rights but what about mothers rights? Who have legal custody of the child.
Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Dec 6, 2019

I am not sure exactly what you are asking. Is there something specific that you are wishing to decide regarding your child or something that you are wanting to preclude the child's father from doing? As a general rule, the custodial parent has decision making authority over the child,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: I am married out of Florida. I currently reside in Arkansas with My Step Son and my Children.

My husband is the father to my Step Son and 2 of my young children. He was currently incarcerated and then extradited on a separate warrant to Florida. I am looking to divorce him. His Mother (the grandmother) has a signed notarized letter of custody for my Step Son made a few years ago. His bio... Read more »

Stewart Whaley
Stewart Whaley answered on Nov 28, 2019

You need to consult an attorney. There are unanswered facts that will deteremine how you might proceed. If the notarized letter is not a court order, it does nothing. From the information provided, you are not a biological parent and do not have legal custody established. Grandmother has done... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on
Q: What do you do if my boyfriend, who I have never married, keeps threatening to take my children?

He constantly threatens me with saying he will take the two children and claims to have money for a lawyer when I mentioned taking him to court.

Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Nov 2, 2019

Under Arkansas law, the mother of children born outside of marriage automatically has legal custody of them. In order to obtain custody, a father would have to (1) establish paternity, (2) show that he has financially supported the children and maintained a relationship with them, and (3) show... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Libel & Slander, Family Law and Appeals / Appellate Law for Arkansas on
Q: I was forced to plead guilty to a felony but the person or victim now says they lied on me an would tell them what 2 do?

Felony on husband aggravated assault. We had both been drinking n he lied on me later on a court date I was n rehab due to court order from mis court n was issued a fta felony judge n lawyer said if I didn't plea guilty id set n county for 4 months waiting on a court date my rehab was over 100... Read more »

Gary Kollin
Gary Kollin answered on Oct 30, 2019

You have a lawyer to whom you should be speaking

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: My daughter is 17 and her dad has custody and now she wants to come live with me What do we have to do where she can?

She live in Oklahoma and I live in arkansas

Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Oct 29, 2019

You would need to petition the court for change of custody. The petition would need to be filed in the county where the current court order is out of. Unless your ex agrees, you may not be able to change custody. In Arkansas, custody can only be changed (outside of agreement by the parties)... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Education Law and Family Law for Arkansas on
Q: Does a noncustodial parent where no court order of custody is present have the right to request school records?
Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Oct 22, 2019

The question is a little confusing, but I am assuming that since there is no court order and you refer to a non-custodial parent, that the parents were never married. In Arkansas, the mother of a child born outside of wedlock automatically has custody of him or her. The father has to establish... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Juvenile Law for Arkansas on
Q: What petition should I use to transfer guardianship back to me if the guardian agrees?

Guardianship since 2012. . Grandma is not opposed. Say I just need to draft and file proper paperwork. I'm in Arkansas and not sure what to file

Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Oct 19, 2019

If the guardianship is here in Arkansas, and if you are a parent of the child, you would need to file a petition to terminate the guardianship. If you need assistance or have further questions, feel free to contact me.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Arkansas on
Q: I have primary custody of two daughters. I believe their father is using drugs. Can I ask that he be drug tested?

We live in Arkansas. The girls are 11&13. The oldest no longer wants to go to his house.

Dustin A. Duke
Dustin A. Duke answered on Oct 15, 2019

The short answer to your question is "yes." You could file a motion with the court in your previous custody case and allege that you believe your ex is on drugs and request a drug test. The judge would need to sign an order requiring your ex to take the test. You would likely be... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support, Family Law and Immigration Law for Arkansas on
Q: How can i prevent kids father of taking kids out of country he has custody of one and i have custody of the other

Their father already took kids to border and left with his family for 8 months.. I want to prevent this as well as reverse custody of my other child back to me..

Patricia C. Wall-Santiago
Patricia C. Wall-Santiago answered on Oct 15, 2019


I am not a family law attorney neither authorized to practice law in your state but you need to contact a family attorney in your area ASAP regarding this matter or if you don't have the means to afford an attorney you can contact legal aid and see if you qualified for their...
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