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Can wife claim the right to live in a matrimonial home?

Advocate Shivendra

Advocate (Lucknow)

Online advising since Oct. 2014

Question: Can the wife claim right to live in a matrimonial home? My mother in law and her relatives maliciously threw me out of the matrimonial home and convinced my husband to divorce me. I somehow managed to return to the matrimonial home after 2.5 months but since then my mother in law and husband have been trying to throw me out somehow. I am unable to step out for fear that they would not let me return home. They have left me alone without giving me main door keys and living somewhere else. What protection can I get to stay in my matrimonial home? If I file dv, will I end up getting alternate accommodation or can I claim the right to live in a matrimonial home?

Asked from: Uttar Pradesh

Legally married has the right to stay in her matrimonial home. If she is being subjected to cruelty or violence in the matrimonial home she can seek residence order from the court. The court will secure peaceful residence by passing an order under Section 18 of the Domestic Violence Act. 

You are facing domestic violence and have sufficient evidence to prove it. An aggrieved person is entitled to claim residence order under the D. V. Act. If the court finds that living in a matrimonial home is unsafe then it can direct your husband to provide alternative accommodation. In Aishwarya Atul Pusalkar v. Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority AIR 2020 SC (CIVIL) 3000  the Supreme Court has held that

A married woman is entitled to live, subsequent to her marriage, with the rest of her family members on the husband’s side. The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 has recognised the concept of ‘shared household’ in terms of Section 2(s) of this statute. A Magistrate having jurisdiction under Section 19 of the said Act is empowered to pass a residence order to protect a victim of domestic violence from being removed from her shared household.

Thus your husband and in-laws cannot remove you from the matrimonial home which is also a shared household within the meaning of section 2(s) of D.V. Act.

You should file a complaint under Section 12 of the D.V. Act and claim relief under Section 18 & 19 of the Domestic Violence Act. It is necessary for you to secure residence in the matrimonial home. You are a victim of domestic violence. Thus the court will direct the opposite parties i.e. your husband and in-laws to provide you a safe place in the matrimonial home or a rented place in the same vicinity.

Right to live with dignity is a fundamental right hence, wife can claim the right to live in a matrimonial home under Section 18 of D V Act. The provisions of Domestic Violence Act secured this valuable right of women. The Act empowers the Magistrate to pass suitable order for securing safe place of residence for the aggrieved person.

shivendra pratap singh advocate

Advocate Shivendra

Advocate (Lucknow)

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