Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007

 The Act provides effective provisions for the maintenance and welfare of parents and senior citizens guaranteed and recognized under the Constitution and for related matters.

  • A senior citizen can make an application, under section 4 of the Act, who is :

                  (i) unable to maintain himself from his own earning or,

                  (ii) out of the property owned by him

  • This application can be made by:

                  (i) parent or grand-parent, against major children;

                  (ii) a childless senior citizen, against his relative

  • The obligation of the children or relative to maintain a senior citizen extends to the needs of the senior citizen to lead a normal life.
  • After receiving the application, under section 5, the Tribunal shall hold an inquiry for determining the amount of maintenance and can also order for monthly allowance for the maintenance during the pendency of the case.
  • This application shall be disposed of within ninety days.
  • If the order of the Tribunal is not complied then, the Tribunal may issue a warrant for levying the amount due in the manner provided for levying fines, and may sentence such person to imprisonment for a term which may extend to one month or until payment if sooner made whichever is earlier.
  • Under section 6, the Tribunal shall have the power of a Judicial Magistrate of first class as provided under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.
  • The Tribunal before hearing an application under section 5 may, refer the same to a Conciliation Officer and such Conciliation Officer shall submit his findings within one month and if amicable settlement has been arrived at, the Tribunal shall pass an order to that effect.
  • The State Government, under section 7, shall within a period of six months from the date of the commencement of this Act, by notification in Official Gazette, constitute for each Sub-division one or more Tribunals which is presided over by an officer not below the rank of Sub- Divisional Officer of a State.
  • According to section 8, the Tribunal may, subject to any rules that may be prescribed by the State Government in this behalf, follow such summary procedure as it deems fit.
  • Under section 9 of the Act, if children or relatives neglect or refuse to maintain a senior citizen being unable to maintain himself, the Tribunal may order such children or relatives to make and pay a monthly allowance at such monthly rate for the maintenance of such senior citizen from time to time. However, the maximum maintenance allowance which may be ordered shall not exceed ten thousand rupees per month.
  • The section 10 of the Act provides that in case of proof of misrepresentation or mistake of fact or a change in the circumstances of any person receiving a monthly allowance, the Tribunal may make such alteration, as it thinks fit, in the allowance for the maintenance.
  • Under section 11, a copy of the order of maintenance and including the order regarding expenses of proceedings shall be given without payment of any fee to the senior citizen or to parent.
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  • Also the section 12 of the Act specifies that where a senior citizen or a parent is entitled for maintenance under Chapter IX of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 and also then, such claim of maintenance under either of those Acts can be made but not under both.
  • Also with the maintenance the Tribunal may, under section 14 of the Act, may direct the payment of simple interest from date not earlier than the date of making the application at rate not be less than five per cent and not more than eighteen per cent.
  • Under section 15 of the Act, an Appellate Tribunal is to be ,constituted one for each district by the State Government may which is to be presided over by an officer not below the rank of District Magistrate.
  • Under section 16 of the Act, an appeal can be made within sixty days from the date of the order by:

                  (i) any senior citizen or a parent

                  (ii) the children or relative but they shall continue to pay to such parent the amount so in the manner directed by the Appellate Tribunal

  • The Appellate Tribunal shall not reject any appeal unless an opportunity has been given to both the parties of being heard. The Appellate Tribunal shall make an endeavour to pronounce its order in writing within one month of the receipt of an appeal. Also, a copy of every order shall be sent to both the parties free of cost.
  • Under section 19 of the Act, the State Government may establish and maintain oldage homes beginning with at least one in each district to accommodate in such homes a minimum of one hundred fifty senior citizens who are indigent.
  • The section 20 & 21 of the Act, needs the State Government to ensure that:

                  (i) the Government hospitals shall provide beds for all senior citizens,

                  (ii) separate queues be arranged for senior citizens;

                  (iii) facility for treatment of chronic, terminal and degenerative diseases is expanded for citizens;

                   (iv) research activities for chronic elderly diseases and ageing expanded;

                   (v) there are earmarked facilities for geriatric patients in every district hospital.

                   (vi) the provisions of this Act are given wide publicity through public media.

                   (vii) the Central Government and State Government Officers, including the police officers and the members of the judicial service, are given periodic sensitization and awareness training on the issues relating to this Act

  • The section 24 of the Act provides that whoever having the care or protection of senior citizen leaves such senior citizen in any place with the intention of wholly abandoning such senior citizen shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months or fine which may extend to five thousand rupees or with both.
  • Under section 23 of the Act, when any senior citizen has transferred by way of gift or otherwise his property, subject to the condition that the transferee shall provide the basic amenities and basic physical needs to the transferor and such transferee refuses or fails to provide such amenities and physical needs, the said transfer of property shall be deemed to have been made by fraud or coercion or under undue influence and shall at the option of the transferor be declared void by the Tribunal.
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