Do i have to pay maintenance if wife is capable of earning?

Do I have to pay maintenance if my wife is capable and was working but is not working now? She is post graduate and it’s been 4 years that we’ve been married. I tried to save the marriage all these years but there's no compatibility. Defamation, Cruelty in terms of tearing clothes, abusing and reversing the case of domestic violence are just few things I’ve faced.


I did not go to the Police thinking what will people say about this. When I tried talking to her she says she will file for Divorce. I want to initiate Divorce proceedings against her.


What should I do?




The amount of maintenance (Alimony) which you shall be liable to pay to your wife shall be decided by the Court based on the living standards your wife was availaing while being married to you. However, as you have mentioned that she is capable of earning as well, this shall be taken into consideration by the Court while deciding the amount of alimony.


For the Divorce Proceedings:


Indian legal System prescribes different laws for divorce for people belonging to different religions. Assuming you both are Hindus and are governed by the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, then you can seek divorce from your wife based on the various grounds enumerated in Section 13 of the Act. Section 13 of the Act has been reproduced below for your better understanding.


Section 13(1) states that a petition may be presented by either the husband or the wife, for dissolution of marriage by a decree of divorce on the ground that the other party-


i. has, after the solemnization of the marriage, had voluntary, sexual intercourse with any person other than his or her spouse; or


a. has, after the solemnization of the marriage, treated the petitioner with cruelty; or


b. has deserted the petitioner for a continuous period of not less than two years immediately preceding the presentation of the petition; or


ii. has ceased to be a Hindu by conversion to another religion; or


iii. has been incurably of unsound mind, or has been suffering continuously or intermittently from mental disorder of such a kind and to such an extent that the petitioner cannot reasonably be expected to live with the respondent. 


Explanation.- In this clause,-


a. the expression" mental disorder" means mental illness, arrested or incomplete development of mind, psychopathic disorder or any other disorder or disability of mind and includes schizophrenia;


b. the expression" psychopathic disorder" means a persistent disorder or disability of mind (whether or not including sub- normality of intelligence) which results in abnormally aggressive or seriously irresponsible conduct on the part of the other party, and whether or not it require or is susceptible to medical treatment; or


iv. has been suffering from a virulent and incurable from of leprosy; or


v. has been suffering from venereal disease in a communicable from; or


vi. has renounced the world by entering any religious order; or


vii. has not been heard of as being alive for a period of seven years or more by those persons who would naturally have heard of it, had that party been alive.


As per our understanding, we feel that your situation falls under Section 13(1)(ia).


Under Section 13(1)(ia) the term cruelty includes mental as well as physical cruelty. Therefore the behavior of your wife towards you can easily come within the four walls of this word.


Now you need to file a petition for divorce under this Section seeking a decree for divorce in the competent court. For this you need to consult an Advocate who shall draft your petition and the legal expenses involved in the entire process will depend upon the Advocate you engage.


Kindly contact us for any further details and action.


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