• My mother is in an abusive relationship what are her rights?

My dad abuses my mom physically, mentally and financially. He controls all her finances and only gives her pocket money to run the household. In recent events i have also caught him messaging a woman indicating an affair. My mom wants to separate and my dad is not cooperating or willing and is continuing to abuse her. What are her rights and how can she get her independence? He expects her to behave like nothing has happened and get dominated just because she is a housewife.
Asked 4 months ago in Family Law
Religion: Hindu

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9 Answers

The  below information is directly addressed to her.

I am forwarding the law against harassment of wife by husband and his family. You will know all the law that is in her favor. Make use of whatever is required for you.

You have many options. Law is in favor of women. They are doing this because you are tolerating it once you enforce your rights they will realize their mistakes and mend their ways. Following  remedies are available to you…

  1. Under Domestic Violence Act, 2005—
  2. You, any relative or friend on your behalf or an Advocate engaged by you can submit an application to the Magistrate or police. A notice  will be served on husband and he will be asked to attend the court on a particular date. If he fails to attend court, he will be arrested by police and brought to court. You can obtain any or all of the following  orders…
  3. Protection order prohibiting husband from—
  4. committing any act of domestic violence;
  5. entering the place of your employment;

  • attempting to communicating with you;

  1. selling any assets, operating bank accounts or bank lockers held jointly by both or singly by husband including streedhan.
  2. Residence order. Police will force your husband to give shelter in the shared house and restrain him from dispossessing you.
  3. Monetary reliefs:
  4. To meet the expensed incurred and losses suffered as a result of domestic violence;
  5. Loss of earnings;

  • Medical expenses;

  1. Maintenance for wife and children;
  2. Lump sum payment.
  3. Compensation: compensation and damages for injuries, including mental torture and emotional distress.
  4. You can file a case under Section 19 (b) or (d) Domestic Violence Act, 2005, under which  Court will order police to take to the matrimonial house and keep you there. Court can also order husband not to enter within 200 meters of house. If he obstructs you, police will arrest him.

  5. Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, Section 125: you can obtain monthly maintenance for yourself and child. Employed or not, earning or not he is bound to pay you and your child maintenance.

  6. Indian Penal Code, 1860: You can file criminal case under Section 498A if there is cruelty or demands of dowry for which punishment is imprisonment upto three years.
  7. As per Section 6 of Hindu Minority and Guardianship Act, 1956, custody of child below five years will be with mother with visiting rights to father and custody after five years of age will be father with visiting rights to mother. Though this is general rule, this is not fixed law, in special circumstances child above 5 years especially when the child is girl, custody is given to mother with visiting rights to father. 
  8. If they are not giving your belongings, you can file case against them under Section 406 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 for criminal breach of trust for which punishment is 3 years.

 It is not easy for him to get divorce, unless you agree.  If he files divorce he has to pay of alimony running into hefty sum.

It is strongly advised that you should…

  1. secure your ornaments by obtaining order, not to operate bank locker and bank accounts under Domestic Violence Act, 2005.
  2. Restrain him from house transferring as the same belongs to you son/daughter.


Ravi Shinde
Advocate, Hyderabad
3124 Answers
42 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Mother can file for divorce on grounds of mental cruelty 


2) seek interim maintenance and alimony from husband 


3) she can also file DV case seek protection order against her husband 


4) seek maintenance and compensation for mental torture undergone by her 

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
89022 Answers
6344 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

- As per law, A wife has the right to claim decent living standards and basic comforts of life from her husband. Hence for claiming the maintenance for her ,your mother can file a petition under section 125 CrPc, and your father is under legal obligation to provide the same to her at any cost, even he is working or not. 

- Further, Law entitles wives a basic right to reside in the matrimonial/ home, whether the house owned by her husband or his parents, a rented property or officially provided to him. 

- Hence, for claiming her residential right, medical expenses etc., and also for teaching a lesson to your father , who subjected her torture & harassment, she can file a petition under the provisions of Domestic Violence Act.

- Further, if she wanted to be separated from him , then she can file a divorce petition before the court on the ground of cruelty. 

Mohammed Shahzad
Advocate, Delhi
10266 Answers
123 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Dear Friend 

Sorry to hear about your situation. I hope and pray it improves.

What you are seeking a resolution to, is a complex situation. Your options depend on your/your mother's financial condition as well. 

If marital counselling and seeking assistance from relatives hasn't worked out, then consider the more serious options available to your mother.

If she wishes to continue living with her husband(your father) she can file a petition under the Domestic Violence Act and can get orders for financial assistance and preventing future violence in incidents. 

The other option is seeking a divorce which may take some time. She can also file other petitions for seeking maintenance in the interim period such as 125Crpc. She can seek divorce under several grounds as you have yourself explained, cruelty and extra marital relationship. Try to get the instances of physical violence documented by contacting women helpline whenever your mom has been hurt or getting other people like maids, neighbours to be witness to it. So that you can have a solid case in the future and things don't become your mom's word vs your dad's.


Hope you are able to find a solution. All the best.


Abhiraj Jayant
Advocate, Delhi
46 Answers
1 Consultation

Not rated

Dear Client,

Your mother can file for divorce on the ground of cruelty. She can also request the court to direct your father to give maintenance.

Anik Miu
Advocate, Bangalore
5320 Answers
57 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

If your mother is financially independent she can very well take a decision to leave the house and look for an accommodation elsewhere far away from your father. 

He cannot stop or prevent her from leaving the house.

You have mentioned that he controls all her finances, it means she is having an income of her own, hence she can very well set up her own house outside this house and live peacefully.

If your father is troubling her even in the new house, she can very well resort to police complaint and seek protection.

If your mother is not having sufficient income to look after her  then you can help her to take care of her needs or you can even plan to take her to your place. 

The dependency is the problem that she faces all this type of cruelties.

You can decide  and take a better decision.


T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
79184 Answers
1611 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

What do you mean by freedom.

She is not a slave nor she is a kid  or mentally insane person.

It depends on the steps she would take get herself freed from the cruel clutches of your father.

You support your mother to get her out of the house and accommodate her in a different house  and take care of all her expenses. 

It is in your hand that how long you will take to implement the best solutions to your mother. 

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
79184 Answers
1611 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1. If your mother can convince your father to agree for Mutual Consent Divorce, which saves time and money, then within six months of filing for MCD, divorce will be granted. This cooling period of six months can also be waived off in certain extraordinary cases.

2.  If MCD is not possible, let your mother file for contested divorce based on mental harassment and cruelty caused by your father.

3. Otherwise, your mother can file for Judicial Seperation, wherein the marriage will still be subsisting but your mother and father have to live seperately, not under same roof.

Shashidhar S. Sastry
Advocate, Bangalore
4343 Answers
258 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

She can file Domestic violence complaint against him and seek maintenance and other reliefs

Prashant Nayak
Advocate, Mumbai
28054 Answers
93 Consultations

4.4 on 5.0

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