The Supreme Court has said that if a woman is unable to support herself after divorce, she is entitled to alimony. It has also said that 25 per cent of a man’s net salary is a ‘just and proper amount’ for alimony.
The case came to the SC after a Bengali man challenged the Calcutta high court’s order which had directed him to pay his estranged wife Rs 23,000 a month. A bench of Justices R Banumathi and M M Santanagoudar directed the Hoogly resident to set aside Rs 20,000 of his monthly Rs 95,527 as maintenance for his ex-wife.
“The amount of permanent alimony awarded to her must be befitting the status of the parties and the capacity of the spouse to pay maintenance, which is always dependant on the factual situation of the case… and the court would be justified in moulding the claim for maintenance passed on various factors,” said the bench.
The bench did reduce the amount he has to pay by Rs 3,000 since he has remarried and has a child from the second marriage.
Earlier this month, the Supreme Court had said that a woman will be entitled to alimony even if she was the one who deserted her husband, if she cannot sustain herself. This was after a person, Manoj Kumar, had challenged the Himachal Pradesh HC for directing him to pay Rs 3,000 per month in alimony to his ex-wife who had deserted him.