Maintenance Awards must be Reasonable

Maintenance rewards are the monetary aids in India, that is basically a duty of a man to provide maintenance to his parents, wife and children, especially when they are unable to maintain themselves and take care of their basic needs and requirements. As per the legal terms and guidelines, awarded maintenance must be reasonable and pretty much realistic in nature. It must be something that is quantifiable and reasonable to be given to someone. Aid must be of such nature so as to be helpful to the dependent. As per the contentions of Hon’ble supreme court, maintenance given must not be too extreme for either of the parties, so that it doesn’t become unfair for either of the parties. The court is of the opinion that there is supposed to be a propensity on part of both husband and wife. The major aspects, on which the decision of maintenance is taken are

  • Financial status of the parties
  • Reasonable requirements and demands of the dependent
  • The level of independence of claimant
  • Earnings of both the parties
  • Adequacy of earning to empower the claimant
  • Cost of legislation for non employed wife
  • Other related costs
  • Financial capacity of husband
  • Dependent family members
  • Reasonable expenditures

In some cases, where the wife is educated and she has sacrificed her career and opportunities just for the sake of family and the very maintenance of the children and for taking care of household duties, then the situation must be given importance while deciding upon the matters. In the cases where wife is already employed, this doesn’t work as bar from being awarded maintenance by the husband. The financial independence doesn’t bar the right of wives of seeking monetary benefits if they are eligible for the same in the eyes of law and this varies from case to case. It is again on the court to decide upon whether the wife’s earnings are adequate or not, and if it’s enough to maintain herself in accordance with the very lifestyle that she is used to live in.

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There are certain cases in which the husband doesn’t disclose his exact earnings and sometimes it becomes adverse and the decisions may or may not be in conformity with the husband and his financial status for that matter. Basic living expenses are inclusive of

  • Food
  • Clothing
  • Shelter
  • Medical expenses
  • Child’s education
  • Extra curricular aids
  • Child support
  • Household expenses
  • Other related activities and expenses

However, as per the laws and conventions, the constant care and support to family members who are either disabled or have an ill health and need constant support, shall also be a relevant consideration while the court decides upon maintenance. Speaking of the technical requisites, as per the court, right to claim any sort of maintenance under every enactment should date back to the very date of filing the application and related matters thereof.