Landlord and Tenant.
Subchapter 1. General Provisions.
Failure to pay rent - Refusal to vacate upon notice -
(a) Any person who shall rent any dwelling house or
other building or any land situated in the State of Arkansas and who
shall refuse or fail to pay the rent therefor when due according to
contract shall at once forfeit all right to longer occupy the
dwelling house or other building or land.
(b) If, after ten (10) days' notice in writing shall
have been given by the landlord or his agent or attorney to the
tenant to vacate the dwelling house or other building or land, the
tenant shall willfully refuse to vacate and surrender the possession
of the premises to the landlord or his agent or attorney, the tenant
shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. Upon conviction before any justice
of the peace or other court of competent jurisdiction in the county
where the premises are situated, the tenant shall be fined in any
sum not less than one dollar ($1.00) nor more than twenty-five
dollars ($25.00) for each offense. Each day the tenant shall
willfully and unnecessarily hold the dwelling house or other
building or land after the expiration of notice to vacate shall
constitute a separate offense. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-101
History. Acts 1901, No. 122, § 1, p. 193; C. & M. Dig., §
6569; Acts 1937, No. 129, § 1; Pope's Dig., § 8599; A.S.A. 1947,
Lessee unlawfully collecting from subtenant - Penalty.
(a) It shall not be lawful for anyone who has leased
any lands from one (1) or more persons and sublet any portion
thereof to others to take or collect any rent from the subtenant
before final settlement with the landlord, without first having
obtained from the landlord or his agent and delivered to the
subtenant a written direction stating the amount of rent authorized
to be collected from the subtenant. If, afterward, the principal
tenant shall fail to pay to the landlord his rent due, the amount
paid by the subtenant upon the written direction shall be deducted
from the pro rata amount of rent for which the land cultivated by
the subtenantwould otherwise be liable to the landlord under
(b) Every principal tenant or his agent who without
first having paid or settled with the landlord or produced and
delivered the written directions as stated in subsection (a) of this
section, shall collect or attempt to collect any rent from any
subtenant shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor. Upon conviction,
he shall be punished by fine of not less than fifty dollars ($50.00)
nor more than five hundred dollars ($500) or by imprisonment not
exceeding six (6) months, or by both fine and imprisonment.
Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-102
Rent collection by personal representative of life tenant.
The executor or administrator of any tenant for life who
shall have demised any lands or tenements so held and shall die on
or before the day when any rent on the demise shall become payable
(1) If the tenant for life dies on the day the rent
becomes due, the whole rent;
(2) If he dies before the day on which the rent becomes
due, the proportion of the rent as shall have accrued before his
death. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-103
Penalty for enticing renter away.
If any person shall interfere with, entice away, knowingly
employ, or induce a renter who has contracted with another person
for a specified time to leave the leased premises before the
expiration of his contract without the consent of the
landlord, that person shall, upon conviction before any justice of
the peace or circuit court, be fined not less than twenty-five
dollars ($25.00) nor more than five hundred dollars ($500). In
addition, he shall be liable to the landlord for all advances made
by him to the renter by virtue of his contract, whether verbal or
written, with the renter and for all damages which he may have
sustained by reason thereof. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-104
Termination of oral lease of farmlands.
The owner of farmlands which are leased under an oral
agreement may elect not to renew the oral rental or lease agreement
for the following calendar year by giving written notice by
certified registered mail to the renter or lessee, on or before June
30, that the lease or rental agreement will not be renewed for the
following calendar year. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-105
Holding over after termination of term.
(a) If any tenant for life or years, or if any other
person who may have come into possession of any lands and tenements
under, or by, collusion with the tenant, shall willfully hold over
after the termination of the term and thirty (30) days' previous
notice in writing given, requiring the possession thereof by the
person entitled thereto, the person so holding over shall pay to the
person so kept out of possession double the yearly rent of the lands
or tenements so detained for all the time he shall keep the person
entitled thereto out of possession.
(b) There shall be no relief in equity against any
recovery had at law under subsection (a) of this section.
Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-106
Failure to quit after notice of intention.
(a) If any tenant shall give notice in writing of his
intention to quit the premises held by him at a time specified in
the notice and shall not deliver up the possession thereof at such
time, the tenant, his executor or administrator, shall henceforth
pay to the landlord, his heirs or assigns, double the rent reserved
during all the time the tenant shall so continue in possession of
(b) The double rent may be recovered by a civil action
in any court having jurisdiction thereof. Title 18, Chap. 16,
Property left on premises after termination of lease.
Upon the voluntary or involuntary termination of any lease
agreement, all property left in and about the premises by the lessee
shall be considered abandoned and may be disposed of by the lessor
as the lessor shall see fit without recourse by the lessee. All
property placed on the premises by the tenant or lessee is subjected
to a lien in favor of the lessor for the payment of all sums agreed
to be paid by the lessee. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-108 Subchapter
Actions Against Tenants.
Ejectment for nonpayment of rent.
(a) Whenever a half-year's rent or more is in arrears
from a tenant, the landlord, if he has a subsisting right by law to
reenter for the nonpayment of the rent, may bring an action of
ejectment to recover the possession of the demised premises.
(b) If a summons in the action cannot be served in the
ordinary mode provided by law, it may be served by affixing a copy
thereof on a conspicuous part of the demised premises, where it may
be conveniently read.
(c) The service of the summons in such an action of
ejectment shall be deemed and stand instead of a demand of the rent
in arrears and of a reentry on the demised premises.
(d) If on the trial of the action it is proved or upon
judgment by default it appears to the court by affidavit that the
plaintiff had a right to commence the action according to the
provisions of this section, then he shall have judgment to recover
the possession of the demised premises and costs of suit.
(e) If the defendant, before judgment is given in the
action, either tenders to the landlord or brings into court where
the suit is pending all the rent then in arrears and all costs, all
further proceedings in the action shall cease.
(f) If the rent and costs remain unpaid for six (6)
months after execution upon such a judgment in ejectment is executed
and no complaint for relief in equity is filed within that time,
then the lessee and his assigns, and all other persons deriving
title under the lease from the lessee, shall be barred from all
relief in law or equity, except for error in the record or
proceedings, and the landlords shall henceforth hold the demised
premises discharged from the lease.
(g) A mortgagee of the lease not in possession of the
demised premises who, within six (6) months after execution of any
judgment in ejectment is executed, shall pay all rent in arrears,
pay all costs and charges incurred by the landlord, and perform all
the agreements which ought to be performed by the first lessee shall
not be affected by the recovery in ejectment. Title 18, Chap.
Duty of tenant to notify landlord.
Every tenant on whom a summons in ejectment to recover the
tenements by him held shall be served shall forthwith give notice
thereof to the person, or the agent of the person, of whom the
tenant holds. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-202
Actions for use and occupation.
(a) A landlord may recover in a civil action a
reasonable satisfaction for the use and occupation of any lands and
tenements held by any person under an agreement not made by deed.
(b) If a parol demise or other agreement not by deed,
by which a certain rent is reserved, appears in evidence on the
trial of the action, the plaintiff shall not on that account be
barred from a recovery, but may make use thereof as evidence of the
amount of damages to be recovered.
(c) Where lands or tenements are held and occupied by
any person without any special agreement for rent, the owner of the
lands or tenements, or his executor or administrator, may sue for
and recover a fair and reasonable compensation for the use and
occupation by a civil action in any court having jurisdiction
thereof. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-203
Remedy where lease for life.
Any person having any rent due upon any lease for life may
have the same remedy by action for the recovery thereof as if the
lease was for years. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-204.
Recovery of rent in arrears due decedent.
(a) Every person entitled to any rent dependent upon
the life of any other may, notwithstanding the death of the other
person, have the same remedy by action for the recovery of all
arrears of the rent that may be due and unpaid at the death of the
person as he might have if the person were still living.
(b) Every person having in right of his wife any
freehold estate in any rents may, if the rent is due and unpaid at
the time of his wife's death, have the same remedy by action for the
recovery of the arrears as he might have if the wife were still
(c) The executor or administrator of any person to whom
any rent shall have been due and unpaid at the time of the death of
the person may have the same remedy, by action against the tenant,
or his executor or administrator, for the recovery thereof that the
testator or intestate might have had. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-205
As used in this subchapter, unless the context otherwise
(1) "Landlord" means the owner, lessor, or
sublessor of the dwelling unit or the building of which it is a
(2) "Dwelling unit" means a structure or the
part of the structure that is used as a home, residence, or sleeping
place by one (1)person who maintains a household or by two (2) or
more persons who maintain a common household;
(3) "Owner" means one (1) or more persons,
jointly or severally,in whom is vested:
(A) All or part of the legal title to property; or
(B) All or part of the beneficial ownership and a right
to present use and enjoyment of the premises. The term includes a
mortgagor in possession;
(4) "Person" means any individual, firm,
partnership, corporation, association, or other organization;
(5) "Rent" means all payments to be made to
the landlord under the rental agreement;
(6) "Rental agreement" means all written or
oral agreements and valid rules and regulations embodying the terms
and conditions concerning the use and occupancy of a dwelling unit
(7) "Premises" means a dwelling unit and the
structure of which it is a part and facilities and appurtenances
therein and grounds, areas, and facilities held out for the use of
tenants generally or whose use is promised to the tenant;
(8) "Tenant" means a person entitled under a
rental agreement to occupy a dwelling unit to the exclusion of
others. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-301
Transferee, etc., bound.
The transferee, assignee, or other holder of the landlord's
interest in the premises at the time of the termination of the
tenancy is bound by this subchapter. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-302
(a) This subchapter shall not apply to dwelling units
owned by an individual, if the individual, his spouse and minor
children, and any and all partnerships, corporations, or other legal
entities formed for the purpose of renting dwelling units and of
which they are officers, owners, or majority shareholders own, or
collectively own, five (5) or fewer dwelling units.
(b) This exemption does not apply to units for which
management, including rent collection, is performed by third persons
for a fee. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-303
A landlord may not demand or receive a security deposit,
however denominated, in an amount or value in excess of two (2)
months periodic rent. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-304
Refund required - Exceptions.
(a) Within thirty (30) days of termination of the
tenancy, property or money held by the landlord as security shall be
returned to the tenant. However, the money may be applied to the
payment of accrued unpaid rent and any damages which the landlord
has suffered by reason of the tenant's noncompliance with the rental
agreement, all as itemized by the landlord in a written notice
delivered to the tenant, together with the remainder of the amount
due thirty (30) days after termination of the tenancy and delivery
of possession by the tenant.
(b) The landlord shall be deemed to have complied with
subsection (a) of this section by mailing via first class mail the
written notice and any payment required to the last known address of
the tenant. If the letter containing the payment is returned to the
landlord and if the landlord is unable to locate the tenant after
reasonable effort, then the payment shall become the property of the
landlord one hundred eighty (180) days from the date the payment was
mailed. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-305
(a) If the landlord fails to comply with this
subchapter, the tenant may recover the property and money due him,
together with damages in an amount equal to twice the amount
wrongfully withheld, costs, and reasonable attorney's fees. However,
the landlord shall be liable only for costs and the sum erroneously
withheld if the landlord shows by the preponderance of the evidence
that his noncompliance resulted from an error which occurred despite
the existence of procedures reasonably designed to avoid such errors
or was based on a good faith dispute as to the amount due.
(b) This section does not preclude the landlord or
tenant from any other relief to which either may be lawfully
entitled. Title 18, Chap. 16, §18-16-306
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