Do You Have to Wait 30 Days for a Decree of Divorce in Arkansas?
By Mary Jane Freeman
Updated March 29, 2020
Even if divorcing spouses agree on all marital issues, such as custody and property division, Arkansas imposes a 30-day waiting period on all divorces. This means the court will not issue a divorce decree until at least 30 days have passed since the date the divorce petition was filed.
Filing for Divorce
To file for divorce in Arkansas, you must be a resident of the state for at least 60 days before you submit your petition for divorce. On the petition, you must tell the court your grounds, or reasons, for divorce. Arkansas recognizes several grounds for divorce. The two most commonly cited grounds are general indignities and living separate and apart for at least 18 months. After the application is filed and the other spouse is served with divorce papers, the divorce case begins. Spouses are free to reach an agreement on marital issues such as property division, alimony and child custody. If they are unable to agree, however, the court will decide these matters for them and issue a divorce decree.
Waiting Period for Final Divorce Decree
Arkansas, like many other states, imposes a waiting period before issuing divorce decrees. Spouses must wait 30 days from the date the divorce petition is filed before an Arkansas court will issue a divorce decree. In many cases, divorces take much longer than 30 days to complete, especially if spouses disagree on marital issues. However, even if the divorce is uncontested and all issues are resolved in less than 30 days, the court will not issue a divorce decree until the 31st day.
Based on the West Coast, Mary Jane Freeman has been writing professionally since 1994, specializing in the topics of business and law. Freeman's work has appeared in a variety of publications, including LegalZoom, Essence, Reuters and Chicago Sun-Times. Freeman holds a Master of Science in public policy and management and Juris Doctor. Freeman is self-employed and works as a policy analyst and legal consultant.