The new Maintenance Judgement is against men or in favour of wife that has to be seen from a presepective.
The Maintenance laws are obviously considers right of wife to get maintainance we cannot say that law is in favour of women, when the law is already there.
But the new Judgement only clarify the procedure to decide maintainance case.
Here are some of the highlights
But what points are in favour of Husband?
Here are the some points
1. Overlapping Jurisdictions
It is well settled that a wife can make a claim for maintenance under
different statutes. For instance, there is no bar to seek maintenance both under the D.V. Act and Section 125 of the Cr.P.C., or under H.M.A. It would, however, be inequitable to direct the husband to pay maintenance under each of the
proceedings, independent of the relief granted in a previous proceeding. If
maintenance is awarded to the wife in a previously instituted proceeding, she is under a legal obligation to disclose the same in a subsequent proceeding for maintenance, which may be filed under another enactment. While deciding the quantum of maintenance in the subsequent proceeding, the civil court/family court shall take into account the maintenance awarded in any previously instituted proceeding, and determine the maintenance payable to the claimant.
To overcome the issue of overlapping jurisdiction, and avoid conflicting
orders being passed in different proceedings, we direct that in a subsequent
maintenance proceeding, the applicant shall disclose the previous maintenance proceeding, and the orders passed therein, so that the Court would take into consideration the maintenance already awarded in the previous proceeding, and grant an adjustment or set-off of the said amount. If the order passed in the previous proceeding requires any modification or variation, the party would be required to move the concerned court in the previous proceeding.
2. Income Affidavit
Keeping in mind the need for a uniform format of Affidavit of Disclosure
of Assets and Liabilities to be filed in maintenance proceedings, this Court
considers it necessary to frame guidelines in exercise of our powers under Article
136 read with Article 142 of the Constitution of India :
(a) The Affidavit of Disclosure of Assets and Liabilities annexed at
Enclosures I, II and III of this judgment, as may be applicable, shall be filed
by the parties in all maintenance proceedings, including pending proceedings
before the concerned Family Court / District Court / Magistrate’s Court, as
the case may be, throughout the country;
(b) The applicant making the claim for maintenance will be required to file a
concise application accompanied with the Affidavit of Disclosure of Assets;
(c) The respondent must submit the reply alongwith the Affidavit of
Disclosure within a maximum period of four weeks. The Courts may not
grant more than two opportunities for submission of the Affidavit of
Disclosure of Assets and Liabilities to the respondent.
If the respondent delays in filing the reply with the Affidavit, and seeks
more than two adjournments for this purpose, the Court may consider
exercising the power to strike off the defence of the respondent, if the conduct
is found to be wilful and contumacious in delaying the proceedings.
On the failure to file the Affidavit within the prescribed time, the Family
Court may proceed to decide the application for maintenance on basis of the
Affidavit filed by the applicant and the pleadings on record;
The pleadings made in the applications for maintenance and replies filed
should be responsible pleadings; if false statements and misrepresentations
are made, the Court may consider initiation of proceeding u/S. 340 Cr.P.C.,
and for contempt of Court.
In contemporary society, where several marriages do not last for a
reasonable length of time, it may be inequitable to direct the contesting
spouse to pay permanent alimony to the applicant for the rest of her life. The
duration of the marriage would be a relevant factor to be taken into
consideration for determining the permanent alimony to be paid.
Criteria for quantum of Maintenance
A careful and just balance must be drawn between all relevant factors.
The test for determination of maintenance in matrimonial disputes depends on the financial status of the respondent, and the standard of living that the applicant was accustomed to in her matrimonial home.
The maintenance amount awarded must be reasonable and realistic, and
avoid either of the two extremes i.e. maintenance awarded to the wife should neither be so extravagant which becomes oppressive and unbearable for the respondent, nor should it be so meagre that it drives the wife to penury. The sufficiency of the quantum has to be adjudged so that the wife is able to maintain herself with reasonable comfort.
Enforcement of Maintenance Order
The order or decree of maintenance may be enforced like a decree of a
civil court, through the provisions which are available for enforcing a money decree, including civil detention, attachment of property, etc. as provided by various provisions of the CPC, more particularly Sections 51, 55, 58, 60 read with Order XXI.
Striking off the defence of the respondent is an order which ought to be
passed in the last resort, if the Courts find default to be wilful and contumacious,
particularly to a dependant unemployed wife, and minor children.
Contempt proceedings for wilful disobedience may be initiated before the