Opinions and Legal Insights

Can parents demand rent from their children?

Can parents demand rent from their children? written by Diksha Sharma student of Government Law College, Mumbai

Sachin & Anr vs Jhabbu Lal & Anr

Facts:

The appellants namely Sachin and Sanjay along with their wives were occupants of the first and second floor respectively of self-acquired property, belonging to their parents. The respondents namely Jhabbu Lal and Smt. Raj Devi, parents of appellants, had directed their younger son Sachin to pay Rs. 3,500/- monthly as rent. The appellant did not comply with his obligation; consequently, a suit was filed for imposing a permanent injunction. The matter was proposed to be sought through mediation; however, it was a ‘Non- Starter’. The parties moved to the High Court seeking relief.

Issues:

• Whether the imposition of an injunction, as prayed by the appellants, stands?
• Whether the appellants are co-owners of the property?

Legal Provisions:

Section 100, Civil Procedure Code, 1908

Appellants’ Contention:

The appellant submitted that he was incapable of meeting the financial obligation he was put through. It was further submitted that they had contributed towards the construction of the property which deems them to be co-owners of the property and are not obligated to pay for staying in the premises, which they partly own. Therefore, it was prayed to dismiss the appeal of the imposition of an injunction.

Respondents’ Contention:

The mother of the appellants submitted that the behavior of their sons and daughters-in-law was inappropriate which made their living miserable. In addition, the appellants were not taking the responsibility for the submission of payment of electricity bills. Since the respondents are old citizens, they cannot carry out the financial payments solely and the appellants have been continuously defaulting on payments. Hence, it was prayed to impose a permanent and mandatory injunction.

Observation of the Court:

On the basis of documentary evidence submitted by the appellants i.e General Power of Attorney, Agreement to Sell, Receipt possession letter, Affidavit, etc., don’t show any contribution made by the appellants as contented by them, which implies that the parents are the exclusive owners of the self-acquired property. The house was given to the appellants on account of love and affection by parents. The court clarified by stating that son whether married or unmarried has no legal right to live in the house and is only possible at the mercy of his parents till they allow. Cordial relations do not necessitate the parents to bear the burden of their sons throughout life. There is no ground for the court to exercise Section 100 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

Judgment:

The court upheld a decree of imposing a permanent injunction and ordering the parties to bear their own costs.

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