Hindu Law: Daughter's Right to Claim Maintenance
In every family, certain relationships impose legal obligations and responsibilities depending on the nature of the relationship. In Hindu law, a daughter has a right to claim maintenance from her father. The term ‘maintenance’ includes provisions for basic facilities, such as food, clothing, shelter, education and medical treatment. On the event of the father’s death, the unmarried or widowed daughters can be considered as his dependents and they can claim maintenance from his property.
Hindu Law: Daughter is Entitled to Claim Maintenance from Her Father
As per the provisions of the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956, a daughter who is a major, can seek maintenance from the property of her father in two cases:
- When there is joint family property.
- When the property is his self acquisition.
A daughter is considered as a member of the joint family to which she is born until the event of her marriage. She is entitled to claim maintenance from the share of her father in the joint family property. This is applicable irrespective of the fact whether she is a minor or an adult.
In case the property is self acquired by the father, the daughter is entitled for maintenance from her father, until she becomes a major. In case of an unmarried daughter, the term ‘maintenance’ includes adequate provision for her marriage. The personal legal obligation to provide maintenance is continued till she is unmarried.
However, the Section 20, of the Act, provides for a qualification for entitlement of maintenance. A major unmarried daughter is entitled to claim maintenance from her father only in case she is not able to maintain herself from her own income or other property.