A reference of Arkansas eviction laws, and steps of the Arkansas eviction process for landlords and renters, updated 2021.
- What are the reasons that landlords can evict tenants under Arkansas eviction laws?
- Nonpayment of rent (A.C.A § 18-17-901).
- Remaining in possession of the property after the lease term has ended (A.C.A § 18-17-901).
- Violation of the terms or conditions of the rental agreement (A.C.A § 18-17-901).
- Failure to maintain the rental property in a safe, healthy, or habitable condition (A.C.A. § 18-60-304).
- Allow the rental property to become a nuisance subject to abatement (A.C.A. § 18-60-304).
- What notice do Arkansas eviction laws require that landlords provide tenants before starting the eviction process?
- For evictions based on non-payment of rent, the landlord must give a 3-day notice to pay before starting the eviction process. (A.C.A § 18-17-901).
- For evictions based on non-compliance of the lease terms, the landlord must give a 14-day notice before beginning the eviction process. (A.C.A § 18-17-901).
- For evictions based on a holdover tenancy, the landlord must provide a 30-day notice to month-to-month tenants or a 7-day notice to week-to-week tenants. (A.C.A § 18-17-704).
- Do Arkansas eviction laws allow landlords to use “self-help eviction” methods, such as locking a tenant out of the rental unit or shutting off the utilities?
- No. Arkansas law forbids landlords from using self-help eviction methods.
Arkansas Eviction Process
Landlords must follow these steps to carry out a lawful eviction:
- Deliver the eviction notice. The landlord must deliver the proper eviction notice to the tenant. The tenant will have the amount of time indicated in the notice to “cure” the issue.
- File the necessary court documents. If the tenant does not fix the problem, the landlord can take the next step toward the eviction process by filing the necessary court documents, which include:
- Cover sheet
- Notice of intent to issue a writ of possession
The landlord must pay the filing fee and have the tenant legally served with the court documents. The landlord is responsible for having the process server complete the affidavit of service and filing it with the court.
- Wait for the tenant’s answer. The tenant will have an opportunity to answer the complaint.
- Attend the court hearing. After the landlord files the complaint and summons, the court will set a date for the court hearing. At the hearing, the judge will listen to testimony from the parties and review evidence. If the court rules in the landlord’s favor, it will determine damages and may sign a Writ of Possession for the landlord. The Writ of Possession returns legal possession of the property back to the landlord and states that the tenant must vacate the premises within 24 hours or face forcible removal from the property by the sheriff’s department.
- Pursue additional damages. The landlord can pursue further legal action against the tenant even if the tenant has already been evicted for compensation for unpaid rent, court costs, cleaning costs, and property damage.