Arkansas law provides certain protections for timeshare purchasers, such as making sure you get a copy of the public offering statement, as well as providing a right to cancel a timeshare contract, and prohibiting timeshare developers from using advertisements that include misleading statements, among other things. But you still need to be careful when purchasing a timeshare, and you should understand that if you don't make your timeshare mortgage or assessments payments, you may lose your timeshare through foreclosure.
Read on to learn about a few of the significant features of Arkansas’ timeshare law.
Public Offering Statement
A public offering statement contains general information about the timeshare development. In Arkansas, the timeshare developer must provide the purchaser with a copy of the public offering statement (and any amendments and supplements to the statement) before transferring the timeshare interest and no later than the date of the sales contract (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-409(a)(1)).
The public offering statement must disclose important information about the timeshare, such as the developer's name and address, a description of the timeshare plan and the accomodations, the project's budget, fees, and information about your right to cancel the contract, among other things. (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-404).
Your Right to Cancel a Timeshare Purchase in Arkansas
If you change your mind about the timeshare, you can cancel the contract if you act quickly. In Arkansas, you can cancel the timeshare purchase contract without penalty:
- within five days after signing the contract of sale, or
- up until you receive the public offering statement (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-409(a)(2) and (3)).
How to Cancel an Arkansas Timeshare Contract
To cancel your timeshare purchase, you must:
- hand-deliver the notice to the developer, or
- mail the notice by regular mail to the developer or to his or her agent for service of process. Notice is considered given when the cancellation is deposited in the mail (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-409(c)).
(See Nolo’s article on how to cancel a timeshare contract for more information on cancelling a timeshare purchase.)
Escrow Account Required in Timeshare Purchases
The timeshare developer must put any money you pay in connection with a timeshare purchase into an escrow account (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-407).
It must release the funds:
- to you, if you cancel the agreement
- to the developer, if you default in performing an obligation under the sales agreement, or
- to the developer, after the cancellation period ends (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-407).
Statute of Limitations for Rescinding a Timeshare Contract
Even if the cancellation period has expired, you might be able to rescind the contract for other reasons (for example, it is not valid for some reason or the public offering statement was inaccurate). But you must bring a lawsuit within four years after the date the contract is signed (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-403). (This is called the statute of limitations.)
Options When You No Longer Want the Timeshare
If the cancellation period and statute of limitations for a lawsuit have already passed and you’re having difficulty making your timeshare payments (or just want to get out of your timeshare obligation), see Nolo’s article Options to Avoid a Timeshare Foreclosure to learn about different ways to dispose of a timeshare.
Arkansas law prohibits misleading or deceptive advertisements when it comes to timeshares (Ark. Code Ann. § 18-14-503).
Arkansas Timeshare Foreclosures
In Arkansas, if you fail to make your mortgage payments on a deeded timeshare, you will likely face foreclosure. (Learn more in Nolo’s Arkansas Foreclosure Law Center.)
In addition to monthly mortgage payments, timeshare owners are generally responsible for maintenance fees, special assessments, utilities, and taxes, collectively referred to as “assessments.” You will also likely face foreclosure if you fall behind in the timeshare assessments. (For more information on timeshare assessment foreclosures, see Nolo’s article Can Timeshares Be Foreclosed for Nonpayment of Fees and Assessments?)
How to Find Arkansas’ Timeshare Laws
To find the statutes that govern timeshare transactions in Arkansas, go to the Arkansas State Legislature’s webpage at www.arkleg.state.ar.us. Click on “Search/View Arkansas Code.” The relevant statutes are in Title 18 (Property), Subtitle 2 (Real Property), Chapter 14 (Arkansas Time-Share Act).