Arkansas Child Visitation Laws

••• Child & mother image by Ilya Postnikov from

Arkansas Code, Title 9, sets forth the standards used in the state to establish a visitation order in divorce proceedings. In addition, the law covers the steps a parent must take to commence visitation with her child pursuant to an order of the circuit court. The statute also includes provisions to assist a parent in enforcing her visitation rights.

Best Interests of Child

In devising a visitation order, a circuit court in Arkansas must consider what is in the best interests of the child, according to Help Yourself Divorce. The Arkansas Code presume that frequent and continuing contact with the non-custodial parent is in the best interests of the child in most cases. Title 9 of the Arkansas Code requires a demonstration that a child's health, safety or well-being would be jeopardized through visitation with the non-custodial parent for that presumption to be rebutted or overridden.

Records of Child

A visitation order pursuant to the Arkansas Code extends beyond scheduling time for a non-custodial parent and a child to spend together. A visitation order also protects a non-custodial parent's rights to different types of records, including those associated with a child's education and health care.

Parenting Course

Arkansas Code, Title 9, requires parents to attend a two-hour parenting course. Each individual circuit court in the state maintains a list of approved parenting courses within that court's jurisdiction. A court can prevent visitation to commence until the non-custodial parent completes the parenting course.


The non-custodial parent is vested with the right to seek enforcement of a visitation order. An example of a situation in which enforcement is needed is when the custodial parent prevents the non-custodial parent from exercising visitation rights. An visitation enforcement proceeding commences when the non-custodial parent files a motion to enforce with the Arkansas circuit court that issued the child support order. The court is able to hold the person who interfered with visitation in contempt, order more visitation time for the non-custodial parent and even change custody if the circumstances surrounding the interference particularly are extreme.

Legal Representation

Arkansas family law protects your right to obtain representation from an attorney in a visitation proceedings. The Arkansas Bar Association maintains a directory of attorneys in different practice areas, including lawyers with expertise in family law. Contact the organization at:

Arkansas Bar Association 2224 Cottondale Ln. Little Rock, AR 72202 501-375-4606 800-609-5668


About the Author

Mike Broemmel began writing in 1982. He is an author/lecturer with two novels on the market internationally, "The Shadow Cast" and "The Miller Moth." Broemmel served on the staff of the White House Office of Media Relations. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and political science from Benedictine College and a Juris Doctorate from Washburn University. He also attended Brunel University, London.

Photo Credits

  • Child & mother image by Ilya Postnikov from