Wednesday 30 November 2016

Son has no legal right in parents’ house, can stay at their mercy: HC

Son has no legal right in parents’ house, can stay at their mercy: HC, A son cannot claim a right to live in the self-acquired house of his parents and can do so only at their mercy. Merely because the parents have allowed him to live in the house when their relations were cordial does not mean they have to bear his burden throughout life, the Delhi High Court has said. Where the house is self-acquired, the son
whether married or unmarried, has no legal right to live there, said Justice Pratibha Rani.

The High Court was hearing an appeal against a lower court’s order asking a man and his wife to vacate the first floor of his parents’ property in west Delhi.

The younger son of a west Delhi senior citizen, the appellant had obtained an ad-interim injunction against being dispossessed of the property during the pendency of the case before the High Court.

The elderly man told the court that out of love and affection, he and his wife allowed his son and his wife to live on the first floor of their house, while the elder son and his wife were on the second floor.

‘Life turns hell’

The parents said “their sons as well their wives made life hell for them so much so that they were not even paying the electricity bills”.

“The old parents were constrained to make various complaints to the police and also issued public notice on 5th January, 2007 and 17th May, 2012 disowning their sons and debarring them from their self-acquired property,” the court noted in its judgement dated November 24.

Since the situation became unbearable, they filed a suit seeking a mandatory injunction directing them to vacate and also to restrain them from creating any third party interest in the property. The dispute was referred for mediation but that effort failed.

In September, the son agreed to pay Rs 3,500 per month to the parents. He then told the court that he had no money to pay. At the next hearing, he refused to pay money to his parents, and tried to delay the hearing on various grounds.

“The appellants cannot be permitted to abuse the process of law by seeking adjournment on one pretext or the other especially when they are enjoying ad-interim stay against their dispossession from this Court,” said Justice Pratibha Rani.

Parents’ claim stronger

Justice Pratibha Rani said the respondents [the parents] may not have proved themselves to be the owner of the property as in the case of acquiring a title under a registered sale deed, but “surely they would have better rights/entitlement to seek possession of the suit property from his sons who were permitted to live on the first floor only out of love and affection.”

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