Pakistani Family Maintenance Laws, Wife and Child Maintenance before the divorce or after the Divorce
Under the Guardians and Wards Act 1890 of Pakistan, both child and wife maintenance laws apply before and after divorce. These laws are designed to ensure that children and wives are financially secure. They are subject to change based on the circumstances of each case and the decisions of the courts.
Wife and Child Maintenance Laws in Pakistan: A Guide
Marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman that is recognized and protected by law in Pakistan like elsewhere in the world. However, when a marriage fails, it can be a difficult and emotional experience for all parties involved, particularly for the children and the wife specifically when a woman is a non-working individual. In such cases, the law provides for the maintenance of the wife (till the date of effectiveness of Divorce) and children. In this article, we will examine the laws relating to child and wife maintenance in Pakistan.
Child’s Maintenance in Pakistan
The Guardians and Wards Act 1890 of Pakistan governs the rules and regulations related to Child maintenance in the event of a divorce between the couple or even before the dissolution of Marriage. The act also sets out the powers and duties of guardians/fathers, including the obligation to provide maintenance for minors and their property and to act in the best interests of the child/minors. The Muslim Family Laws Ordinance 1961 is another most important piece of legislation that addresses the issue of child maintenance in the country.
Child Support During Divorce
In the event of a dispute between spouses who are not divorced yet, the court may order the father to pay child support to the mother for the benefit of the children. This support may be in the form of financial payments or contributions to the children’s education, healthcare, and other needs. The amount of child support is determined by the court, taking into account the financial resources of the father and the needs of the children.
Child Support Obligations in Pakistan
This may sound a bit strange to many people that only the father is responsible for maintaining the child during his life. The income earned by the mother does not count at all no matter how much she earns by herself, it is always the duty of the father to pay the child support/maintenance. A parent’s obligation to provide maintenance and support to their minor children continues until the children reach the age of majority, or until they are otherwise financially independent. If a parent fails to meet their child support obligations, the court may take enforcement action, such as ordering wage garnishment or seizure of assets, to ensure that the children receive the support they need.
Children’s Rights in Divorce Proceedings in Pakistan
During the divorce proceedings, the rights and interests of the children are protected by the Guardians and Wards Act 1890 and the Muslim Family Laws Ordinance 1961. The court is required to take into account the best interests/welfare of the children when making decisions about custody, monthly maintenance, and access, and the children have the right to be heard and to express their views and preferences if the children are considered of expressive age.
Child Maintenance Determination in Pakistan
The amount of child support or monthly maintenance that a father is obligated to pay is determined by the court, based on the father’s financial resources and the children’s needs. The court may consider factors such as the income of the father, his ability to provide financial assistance for the children, and the needs of the children for food, shelter, education, and healthcare etc. The court may also consider any special needs or circumstances that may impact the children’s well-being.
How to File a Wife and Child Maintenance Petition in Pakistan?
A mother seeking her child/children maintenance of maintenance for herself from the husband files a petition in the Guardian court of her city through a family lawyer of her choice.
When and who sends the Summons to the defendant?
The court issues a summons to the other defendant/father to appear in court and respond to the petition. In case of continuous absence from the court, the court publishes an advertisement in the newspaper as the last warning before passing an ex-parte judgment against the defendant/father in Children and wife maintenance case.
What is the recording of evidence in the suit for Wife and Childern Maintenance?
Both parties present their evidence to the court, including witnesses and documents. A Family court judge examines the evidence presented by both parties to determine the monthly maintenance value.
What is Cross-examination in the suit for Children and Wife Maintenance?
Lawyers of both parties can cross-examine each other’s witnesses, documentary evidence to clarify any questions of the Family Court Judge.