Arkansas Cell Phone & Texting and Driving Laws

Arkansas bans texting for all drivers, and bans handheld cell phone use for drivers aged 18-20. All cell phone use (handheld and hands-free) is banned for novice drivers (drivers under 18). Bus drivers are also prohibited from all cell phone use (both handheld and hands-free).

Cell Phone Use

Drivers 18 to 20 are banned from handheld cell phone use. Novice drivers in Arkansas - drivers younger than 18 – are banned from all cell phone use while driving (handheld and hands-free).


All drivers are banned from sending text messages while driving, except in emergencies. Law enforcement officers, firefighters, ambulance drivers and emergency medical technicians are also exempt.

A violation of the law is a primary offense, meaning it can be the sole reason for a traffic stop. Offenders can face fines up to $100.

Bus Drivers

Bus drivers are banned from all cell phone use while driving. The law prohibits school bus drivers from using a cell phone unless the bus is safely off the road with the parking brake engaged.

How is it Enforced?

With the exception of the law pertaining to novice drivers, all of Arkansas’s cell phone and texting laws are considered “primary” laws. A primary law means that an officer can pull you over for the offense without having to witness some other violation. The ban on all cell phone use for novice drivers is a secondary law.  A secondary law refers to the fact that an officer can only pull you over and issue a ticket if the officer has witnessed some other violation – for example, you ran a stop light while on the cell phone.

Other Arkansas Information on this Website

More Information

Here is the State of Arkansas's government website that has information regarding Arkansas's cell-phone driving law.

Talk to a Lawyer

Want to talk to an attorney? Start here.

How It Works

  1. Briefly tell us about your case
  2. Provide your contact information
  3. Connect with local attorneys