Arkansas may be the Natural State because of its beautiful mountains, rivers and lakes, but for some reason there’s something else that comes natural to Arkansans — a high divorce rate.
Arkansas is tied for fourth out of 46 states that supply data, as only Nevada, Oklahoma and Wyoming have higher divorce rates.
April 14 is National Ex-Spouse’s Day. While it’s not likely people are buying flowers for their former flame, one must wonder just how many others out there are feeling the burn.
BetArkansas.com, which provides coverage of Arkansas sports betting, used data from the National Center for Health Statistics to determine the states with the highest and lowest divorce rates. The figures for the divorce rate are per 1,000 women in 2021, the latest year for which the data has been compiled by the Center.
States Ranked By Divorce Rate
When national operators come into the market, BetArkansas.com will be the place for Arkansas sportsbook promos.
Arkansans Still Getting Married At High Rate
Arkansas’ divorce rate is 3.6 per 1,000 according to the National Center for Health Statistics, tying with Alabama. But that doesn’t keep Arkansans from getting married, because they also rank fifth in marriage rate at 8.2 per 1,000. Only Nevada, Hawaii, Montana and Utah have a higher marriage rate.
Arkansas has some limited no-fault grounds for granting a divorce, and it takes some time to meet the one stipulation. You and your spouse have to live separately for 18 months or more to say the reason for marriage no longer exists. According to Women’sLaw.org, that’s the only reason for a no-fault grounds for divorce.
Apparently, married couples in Arkansas either don’t mind waiting or they seek their divorces through one of eight fault-based grounds listed here – Impotence, Felony Conviction, Drunkenness, Cruel and Inhuman Treatment, Humiliation, Adultery, Incurable Insanity and Lack of Support.
The WH Law Firm, which has locations in four Arkansas cities, offers this breakdown for the top reasons for divorce in Arkansas for 2019 from the Arkansas Department of Health.
A big reason for Arkansas ranking so high in divorces might have something to do with how inexpensive it can be compared to the rest of the nation. A 2020 story by USA Today, cites Arkansas with the 11th-lowest cost of divorce without children at $11,100 and 12th-lowest with children at $16,700.
No matter the reasons, there are more Arkansans who might be celebrating National Ex-Spouse’s Day than just about any other state in the nation.
Douglas Pils has been a sports journalist for 30 years in Texas, Arkansas and New York having worked for the San Antonio Express-News, the Associated Press, The Dallas Morning News and Newsday. He most recently ran the Student Media Department at Texas A&M for eight years.