Tag Archives: Family Court

Order for – Interim Maintenance

An order under Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 does not decide in any manner rights and liabilities of the parties raised in matrimonial petition. The lis in matrimonial petition continues even after disposal of the application under Section 24 of the Act, 1955 as the object of the provision is to enable the indigent, weaker spouse to resist the action of others and to maintain himself or herself, as the case may be. The maintenance awarded under Section 24 of the Act, therefore, can only be said to be an interim maintenance, which would be payable during the continuance of the substantive proceedings under the Act. However, with the termination of the said proceedings, the order under Section 24 of the Act, will lose its efficacy. That means that the said order cannot inure after termination of petition.

       Further, that no appeal shall lie against an interlocutory order under Section 19(1) of the Family Courts Act, 1984, the appeal filed against the order under Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 cannot be said to be in continuation of the original proceedings. Smt. Madhu Mishra v. Prem Kumar Mishra, 2019 (1) AWC 761.

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Divorce by Mutual Consent – Procedure therefor

Sub-section (2) of Section 13-B of the Hindu Marriage Act apparently is procedural in nature which provides that in case any such application by both the parties is made under Section 13-B(1) and the petition is not withdrawn not earlier than six months after the date of presentation of such petition and not later than 18 months after the said date, the court shall pass a decree of divorce declaring the marriage to be dissolved. However, the court while passing such a decree has to be satisfied, after hearing the parties and after making such inquiry as it thinks fit, as to fact that marriage has been solemnized and that the averments in the petition for divorce by mutual consent are correct. To conduct the inquiry for the purposes of finding the averments made in the application to be correct, Section 13-B (2) provides that the parties are to be heard by the court.
The relevant phrase occurring in sub-section (2) of Section 13-B is after hearing the parties. Since the provisions of Section 13-B relate to separation by divorce by mutual consent, as such in all such matters, ordinarily ‘hearing the parties’ would mean hearing the parties in person. In other words while making inquiry as contemplated in sub-section (2) of Section 13-B, the court concerned has to personally interact with the parties which makes it almost mandatory for the parties to be personally present before the court. Kanwaljeet Sachdev v. State of U.P., 2016 (119) ALR 600.

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Matrimonial Dispute – Interim Orders

As has been held in Arathi Bandi v. Bandi Jagadrashaka Rao, (2013) 15 SCC 790, a violation of interim or an interlocutory order passed by a court of competent jurisdiction ought to be viewed strictly if the rule of law is to be maintained. No litigant can be permitted to defy or decline adherence to an interim or an interlocutory order of a court merely because he or she is of the opinion that that order is incorrect, that has to be judged by a superior court or by another court having jurisdiction to do so. It is in this context that the observations of the Court in Sarita Sharma v. Sushil Sharma, (2000) 3 SCC 14 and Ruchi Majoo v. Sanjeev Majoo, (2011) 6 SCC 479 have to be appreciated. If a general principle, the violation of an interim or an interlocutory order is not viewed seriously, it will have widespread deleterious effects on the authority of courts to implement their interim or interlocutory orders or compel their adherence. It is common knowledge that in cases of matrimonial differences in our country, quite often more than one family court has jurisdiction over the subject matter in issue. In such a situation, can a litigant say that he or she will obey the interim or interlocutory order of a Family court and not that of another? Similarly, can one Family Court hold that an interim or an interlocutory order of another Family Court on the same subject matter may be ignored in the best interests and welfare of the child?. An interim or an interlocutory order is precisely what is, interim or interlocutory, and is always subject to modification or vacation by the court that passes that interim or interlocutory order. There is no finality attached to an interim or an interlocutory order. Surya Vadanan v. State of Tamil Nadu, (2015) 5 SCC 450.

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