Does a grandmother have a legal right to be maintained by her sons?
My Grandmother's 3 sons are refusing to keep her with them and do not want to take care of her in her old age. My grandfather passed away 10 years ago and had shared his property's sale proceeds equally 1/5th each among his wife (my grandmother) my mother, and her 3 brothers.
Now the 3 sons live in their respective self acquired houses in Delhi and while so far they were maintaining my grandmother, now they don't want to do it any further. They are keen to send her to an old age home. Does she have any legal rights to be maintained by her sons?
Yes your grandmother has a remedy available under various laws:
1. CODE OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE: Section 125(1)(2) makes it incumbent for a person having sufficient means to maintain his father or mother who is unable to maintain himself or herself and on getting proof of neglect or refusal, may be ordered by a first class magistrate to make a monthly allowance not exceeding Rs.500/-. It is applicable to all, irrespective of their religious faith and religious persuasions, and includes adoptive parents. This section has been interpreted by the supreme court in its ruling so as to make daughters and sons, married or unmarried, equally responsible to maintain their parents.
2. THE MAINTENANCE AND WELFARE OF PARENTS AND SENIOR CITIZENS ACT, 2007: A senior citizen including parent who is unable able to maintain himself from his own earning or out of the property owned by him, is entitled to get relief under this Act. Children/grand children are under obligation to maintain his or her parent either father, mother or both. Likewise, relative of a senior citizen is also bound to look after the senior citizen. If such children or relative is not maintaining his parents or senior citizen respectively, then the parents/senior citizen can seek the assistance of Tribunal constituted under this Act, to enforce the remedy of maintenance. Such parents/ senior citizen can file an application before the Tribunal, claiming maintenance and other reliefs from their children/relatives as the case may be.
Such application for maintenance can be filed by the senior citizen or a parent himself, or if such person is incapable, then by any other person or any registered organisation authorised by him. Such application for maintenance should be disposed of within 90 days from the date of service of notice of application to the respondent. However, the Tribunal can extend time for a maximum period of 30 days in exceptional circumstances after recording reason. The Tribunal is having power to allow interim maintenance pending disposal of the case. Even though the application can be filed against any of children/relative as the case may be, such respondent-children/relative can implead other person who are liable to pay maintenance.
If such children/relative who are directed to pay maintenance fail to comply with the order of tribunal without sufficient cause, the Tribunal may issue warrant for levying the due amount from them in the manner levying fines and can also sentence the erring respondent to imprisonment that may extend to one month or until payment made whichever is earlier.The maximum amount of maintenance that can be allowed by the Tribunal is Rs.Ten Thousand per month.
3. HINDU ADOPTION AND MAINTENANCE ACT: By Section 20(1)of the act, every Hindu son or daughter is under obligation to maintain aged and infirm parent, if unable to maintain himself or herself is entitled to maintenance. Amount is determined by the court taking into consideration the position and status of the parties.
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