Husband wants divorce how can a wife recover cash given in marriage


hi,my sister married to a software engineer in 2015 feb. he has no assets on his name.he took 3.5 lakhs dowry from us.now he not able to accept my sister.he want divorce.now, how she can financially recover.justify for her aspect.he has only private job.

Answers (2)


163 votes

Firstly, please encourage your sister and her husband to discuss the possibility of reconciling their differences and continuing their marriage. If they decide that it is not possible, they can opt for divorce by filing a petition for 'Divorce by Mutual Consent' and also provide for alimony for your sister. You can avail of the pre-litigation counselling offered at the Mediation Centre in order to discuss the issues further.


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209 votes

Under the Dowry Prohibition Law it is an offense to both take dowry OR to give dowry. So the groom and his family who have taken dowry can be charged. And if the bride’s family has complied with the dowry demand and given dowry, they can also be charged as guilty as under this law.

The punishment for violating the law is 5 years imprisonment + Rs.15000/- fine or the value of the dowry given, whichever is more.


Any kind of demand made by the groom or his family, that involves a direct or indirect “deal” in connection with the wedding, is considered a dowry.
This demand can be made before, or during, or after the wedding.
It can be cash, valuable security, property or any other favors.
It includes anything that is sought either directly by the groom’s family or indirectly through a third party.
Examples of dowry demands can include things like: “We need our mortgage paid, so we can have the money for the wedding,’ or ‘Our younger son has got into medical school and we need his fees paid,’ or ‘Find a job for this relative,’ or ‘We need a car so your daughter can live comfortably with us.’



Anything that is given by the bride’s family to the groom or his family, that a bride’s party does not offer on its own is dowry.
Anything that a groom’s party asks for directly or indirectly by dropping hints and the bride’s party feels compelled to give – is dowry.
If the bride’s party feels that giving certain things is a pre-condition for the wedding to take place, and they give it because they worry the marriage will be called off – then it is dowry.
If the bride’s family says it cannot afford something and the groom’s family starts negotiating a ‘lesser deal,’ – that is still dowry.
Or after the wedding, if the bride or her family feel like that they either directly or indirectly are expected to meet demands for purchases, money, favors (social, political, economic), — as compensation for marrying their daughter into that family, then these are dowry demands.



If a bride’s parents want to give the newly married couple gifts for the wedding of their own choosing, without being pressured or asked, and they do not want this to be seen as ‘dowry,’or a violation of the Dowry Prohibition Act, then they should have a list drawn up by their lawyer, with details (description, cost etc.) of the gifts they are giving to the couple, and declare that these are gifts they are giving to the couple of their own choosing.
The groom’s family too should have a copy of this list (so they are not accused of taking dowry either).
Anything that is given to the bride and groom jointly as a wedding gift, belongs to both of them, and cannot necessarily be legally accounted for later on in case a situation warrants a separation.



Anything that a bride’s parents gift, just to their daughter and not to the groom, is the sole property of the bride and under the law it is called Stree Dhan (The Wife’s Property).
This can be given before, during, or after the wedding.
Streedhan includes property that a woman inherits or gifts given to her in cash or kind by her parents, siblings, and also husband and in-laws.
The woman is the absolute owner of her Stree Dhan and the husband and his family have no right over it.
If the woman gives her stree-dhan to her husband and or in-laws for safe-keeping, then they are only trustees and must return it when she asks for it.
If a woman dies under suspicious circumstances within 7 years of her marriage, then the property has to be transferred to her children or to her parents if she has no children.

The biggest change says – “As per new Divorce law, Wife share in property would be 50% in all her husband’s residential properties, no matter what and in other properties, her share will be decided as per the court decision.”
Wife share in property owned by husband would be 50%

Earlier, before this change – a women was entitled for a share in husband’s properties, but there was no quantum defined as per law, it would be any percentage depending on the case, but now with this suggested change, a women will enjoy equal sharing without any condition in all the residential properties owned by husband. But in this case, women will have to specifically apply for her share, she should be aware about this law about “50% share” .

A major change in this amendment is that this rule is applicable to all the properties of the husband acquired before and after the marriage, whereas as the earlier law made sure that the wife gets share only in those properties which are acquired by husband only after marriage. Now men stand to loose on this front, in-case things so sour with wife.
Husband & Wife joint holder’s in a residential property

You should be clear by now, what will happen in the case where a property is registered in the joint names of husband and wife. A lot of couple register a house in joint names, a lot of times both pay’s from their respective salaries, and in some cases only one party pays (generally husband). Imagine divorce happens – Who will get how much ? Women will keep her 50% part and she will also get half of her husband share in the house, so 75% wife and 25% husband.
Rights of women after divorce on other properties in India?
Apart from the mandatory 50% share in husband’s residential properties, the wife will also be entitled to get a share in other kind of properties, but the quantum is not set, as per the Bill, it will depend on “living standard of the wife”
Waiver of six months cooling period possible

As per the old Indian law which governed the division of assets for women after divorce, it was mandatory for husband and wife to spend at-least 6 months together before applying for divorce, but with this new amendment bill, there are provisions of waiving off the 6 months cool off period or lessen it, but only if both husband and wife wants it. Which means if one of the spouse wants to get divorce on an “urgent basis” , but other does not, it will not be possible. This is one of the major change in the bill and will help those couples who do not want to serve that “6 months” cool off period of living together.
Is this a anti-male law ?

A lot of groups have termed this change as anti-marriage and ant-male law and critically oppose it, they have termed it as a bill totally against males and illogical. The major issues with the amendment are as follows

The bill talks about only the division of Husband Properties, but not wife’s properties. So in-case women is at fault, still she will get 50% share in husband property, but her share of property will not be divided.

A major disappointment for men in this bill is that, even the “person at fault” can apply for getting the share of property, and the other party will have to respond to it. Generally as per old law’s when mutual consent was not there, the victim applies for the property share and the person who is the “bad person” has to respond to it. Now with his law change, wife can seek a divorce and ask for share in property.

If wife and husband are living apart from many years, a wife can oppose the divorce on the grounds of financial hardship, but men can not! . This is called Irretrievable breakdown of marriage

There are concern’s raised like this law will encourage more divorce’s are women can get hold of property easily for sure.

Now there are some serious concerns due to these changes. If a husband has one residential properties, old parents who are financial dependent on him and there is divorce between husband and wife, the wife could take 50% share, in which case the men will be left with 50% property, this seems very unjustified. What is the women already owned 2 more properties on her name? She has nothing to worry! .

One serious drawback of this law is that some men, who are undergoing a bad phase of marriage, may convert their residential properties into immovable assets, or just transfer it on other names to save themselves from parting away with 50% share in worst case.

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