Monday, January 5, 2015

Wife not entitled to stay in or claim her father-in-law’s house using DV Act

Delhi is well-known, or shall we say notorious, for property disputes filed by women against in-laws, under the garb of Domestic Violence Act (DV Act) etc.  There have been many judgments in the past including the well-known SC judgment of Batra vs Batra which clarified that mother-in-law’s house couldn’t be claimed to be shared household under DV Act by daughter-in-law.
In this recent Delhi HC judgment, the high court has rejected claim of a 498a/DV wife (what else do we call them!) who had forcibly entered and was staying in few rooms of her father-in-law’s house.   The house was in father-in-law’s name and acquired from his own funds.  This judgment has referred to Batra vs Batra SC judgment as well as other judgments of Delhi high court related to woman’s claim to in-laws property, so it can be a useful source to search out those judgments too.
Main finding from the judgment is below:
Daughter-in-law cannot assert her rights, if any, in the property of her parents-in-law wherein her husband has no right, title or interest. She cannot continue to live in such a house of her parents-in-law against their consent and wishes. In my view, even an adult son or daughter has no legal right to occupy the self acquired property of the parents; against their consent and wishes. A son or daughter if permitted to live in the house occupies the same as a gratuitous licensee and if such license is revoked, he has to vacate the said property.
14. In this case, overwhelming evidence was produced before the trial court by the respondent that he was the owner of the suit property which was his self acquired property. No evidence has come on record to suggest that the said property was purchased from the joint family funds and the husband of appellant had any share therein, during the life of his father. It has also come on record that husband of appellant is not residing in the suit property along with the appellant. In her affidavit by way of evidence, appellant has deposed that she is residing separately from her husband in one room at the ground floor. No cogent evidence was produced before the trial court nor any such finding has been returned by the trial court that husband of appellant is living in the suit property.  Since suit property is self acquired property of the respondent, appellant has no right to continue to occupy the same against the wishes of respondent. read Full Judgment  following link:

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