Supreme Court upholds HC ruling on alimony for live-in partner

Updated - November 17, 2021 05:51 am IST

Published - May 06, 2015 12:00 am IST - NEW DELHI:

Noting that it is not just a lawfully-wedded wife whom a man is obliged to pay alimony to, the Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld a Bombay High Court ruling that a live-in partner is entitled to maintenance.

A Bench led by Justice Vikramjit Sen dismissed the appeal filed by the man against a July 2014 order of the High Court, which he claimed went beyond the legislative intent and framework of the statute.

Judge displeased

Though the litigants — both man and woman — remained anonymous, Justice Sen expressed annoyance at the degrading manner in which the man’s petition referred to his live-in partner as a “call-girl” several times over.

According to the petition, the couple met in 1985 and “their relations matured into acquaintance and friendly relations and they started meeting each other frequently.”

She had even accompanied him abroad and they have lived together for over a period in a rental accommodation. The petition showed that the woman had girl child in 1988 and in 1995, the man had bought a flat in their joint names in Mumbai.

However, the woman had the next year sought a declaration from court that their “marriage” be declared null and void. She also sought monthly maintenance expenses of Rs. 20,000 from the man.

HC intervenes

The case had continued till 2014, in between which a Family Court passed a decree allow some maintenance.

The High Court had later intervened in the case in 2014 and passed a favourable order for maintenance for the woman and her daughter.

Judge says appeal against order went beyond legislative intent and framework of the statute

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