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Arkansas Adoption Laws

The adoption process, various requirements for adults who wish to adopt, restrictions, and other laws regulating adoption are enacted and enforced at the state level. Adopting a child from another country involves even more processes and legal considerations. Most states allow any child who needs a home to be adopted, and those wishing to adopt must meet certain requirements. Additionally, most states also require what is known as a "home residency" or "home study" before the adoption is finalized, which provides for a smoother transition for everyone involved.

Adoption Laws in Arkansas: Overview

Any individual may be adopted under Arkansas statute, although any child 10 and older must provide his or her consent. However, the court will set aside the child's consent if it is determined that the adoption is in the child's best interest. Just about anyone may adopt in Arkansas, including unmarried adults and those who already have children. Check out the Arkansas Heart Gallery, maintained by the state's Department of Human Services, to learn more about adoption in Arkansas and to browse children in need of a permanent home.

The following table lists additional details of adoption laws in Arkansas. See FindLaw's Adoption section for more information.

Code Section 9-9-201 through 9-9-508; Yes
Who May Be Adopted Any person
Age that Child's Consent Needed 10 years and older unless court dispenses with minor's consent in minor's best interest
Who May Adopt Husband and wife together, unmarried adult, unmarried parent of child, single married parent of child if other parent consents or they are legally separated
Home Residency Required Prior to Finalization of Adoption? 6 months
State Agency/Court Human Services/Probate Court
Statute of Limitations to Challenge 1 year

Note: State laws are always subject to change at any time, usually through the enactment of new statutes or decisions by higher courts. You may want to contact an Arkansas family law attorney experienced in adoptions or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Attempts at Standardizing the Adoption Laws of U.S. States

States have been unable to agree on standardized adoption legislation, despite calls to come up with uniform laws in the name of efficiency and less confusion when children are adopted across state lines. The Uniform Adoption Act of 1994 received its fair share of criticism from a number of adoption organizations, including complaints that its confidentiality requirements were too strict, and was adopted by only one state.

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Arkansas Adoption Laws: Related Resources

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