WomensLaw is not just for women. We serve and support all survivors, no matter their sex or gender.
Important: Even if courts are closed, you can still file for a protection order and other emergency relief. See our FAQ on Courts and COVID-19.
Legal Information: Arkansas
Updated: February 12, 2020
Are there any exceptions to the home state rule?
Yes. In some cases, you can file for custody in a state where the children and at least one parent have “significant connections.” Usually, however, you can only do this if there is no home state or if the home state has agreed to let another state have jurisdiction. This can be complicated, and if you think this applies to your situation, please talk to a lawyer in both states about this. For a list of legal resources, please see AR Finding a Lawyer.
You can also file for temporary emergency custody in a state other than the home state if the child is present in the state and:
1. the child has been abandoned or it is necessary in an emergency to protect the child because the child OR
2. a sibling or parent of the child, is subjected to or threatened with mistreatment or abuse.1
1 A.C.A. § 9-19-204
© 2008–2020 WomensLaw.org is a project of the National Network to End Domestic Violence, Inc. All rights reserved. This website is funded in part through a grant from the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. Neither the U.S. Department of Justice nor any of its components operate, control, are responsible for, or necessarily endorse, this website (including, without limitation, its content, technical infrastructure, and policies, and any services or tools provided). NNEDV is a 501©(3) non-profit organization; EIN 52-1973408.