Can Unmarried Girl Live-in with Married Man?

There is no legal barrier in live-in relationships between an unmarried girl and a married man. But both the persons should not be minor and should be capable of giving consent and understand the circumstances which are they living in. Living in a relationship is not considered to be marriage. A marriage with the girl/man is one aspect under marriage act and living with her/him is another concept. A live-in relationship cannot be called as second marriage of the man. But there is a condition to this is that the unmarried girl should know about the marriage of his partner prior entering into the relationship. If the marriage of the adult male is not disclosed to the girl then the girl has the liberty and right to file the criminal proceedings against the male partner for concealing of facts. Moreover, the girl can file a maintenance petition against the man whom she is in live-in relationship. If by their relationship a child is born he can claim the maintenance and property in equal to the child born from the legal wedding.

The Supreme Court has defined five categories of live-in relationships which can be considered in the court: “domestic relationship between an adult male and an adult female, both unmarried; between a married man and an adult unmarried woman, entered knowingly; between an adult unmarried man and a married woman, entered knowingly; between an unmarried adult female and a married male, entered unknowingly; and between same-sex partners.” Frankly speaking, society will not accept the relationship between the unmarried girl and the married boy. But legally speaking there is nothing barrier of law to remain in a live-in relationship of an unmarried girl and a married boy.

The Indian law doesn’t give any rights or commitments to the parties seeing someone to be in a live-in relationship. Be that as it may, court has explained the idea of live-in relationship through different decisions. In spite of the fact that law is as yet indistinct about the status of such relationship yet scarcely any rights have been allowed by deciphering and revising the current enactments with the goal that abuse of such connections can be forestalled by the accomplices.

Judicial Response w.r.t Live-in Relationships:

“With changing social norms of legitimacy in every society, including ours, what was illegitimate in the past may be legitimate today.”

 “Revanasiddappa v. Mallikarjun[1]

Indian judiciary department has taken a lead to fill the space that was made without a particular rule identifying the specific statute of live-in relationships. It might be viewed as unethical or even immoral according to society however it isn’t by any stretch of the imagination “illegal” or “illicit” in the eyes of the law. The goal of the Indian judiciary is to render equity to the accomplices of live-in relationship partners who were prior not ensured by any resolution or statute when exposed to any maltreatment or harassment emerging out of such connections. The legal executive; the judiciary is neither explicitly advancing such idea nor forbidding such kind of connections. It is, in any case, recently worried that there ought not to be any premature delivery or miscarriage of equity or justice. Hence, while analysing and stating different cases, the judiciary has remembered different variables including both cultural standards of society and sacred qualities abiding the constitutional values.

“Badri Prasad v. Director of Consolidation[2]

“Legal validity to a 50-year live-in relationship”

“The assumption was rebuttable, yet a substantial weight lies on the individual who tries to deny the relationship of lawful starting point to demonstrate that no marriage occurred. Law inclines for authenticity and frowns upon a charlatan.”

In “Madan Mohan Singh v. Rajni Kant[3],”

“The live-in relationship whenever proceeded for long period of time, it can’t be named as a ‘walk-in or walk’ out or ‘stroll in and exit’ relationship and that there is an assumption of marriage between the parties. By this methodology of the Court, it very well may be plainly derived that the Court is agreeable to treating long haul living connections as a marriage rather than giving it another idea like a live-in relationship.”

 “S. Khushboo v. Kanniammal”[4],

The Supreme Court held: “A living relationship comes surprisingly close to right to life under Article 21 of the Constitution of India. The Court additionally held that live-in relationship is admissible and the demonstration of two significant living together respectively can’t be viewed as illicit or unlawful.”

A relationship like “marriage under the 2005 Act” must agree to some fundamental measures. It gives that the couple must be of legitimate age to wed or ought to be able to go into a lawful marriage. It was additionally expressed that the couple must have intentionally lived together and held themselves out to the world as being much the same as life partners for a noteworthy timeframe. Each sort of live-in relationship ought not to be secured under the “Act of 2005”. Just going through seven days together or a single night rendezvous would not make it a family relationship. “It also held that if a man has a “keep” that he keeps up monetarily and utilizes basically for sexual reasons or conceivably as a slave then it would not be thought of, as a relationship in the idea of marriage.”

“IndraSarma v. V.K.V. Sarma”[5]

“At the point when the lady knows about the way that the man with whom she is in a live-in relationship and who as of now has a lawfully married spouse and two children, isn’t qualified for different reliefs accessible to a legitimately married wife and furthermore to the individuals who go into a relationship in the idea of marriage” according to arrangements of PWDVA, 2005. In any case, for this situation, the Supreme Court felt “that denial of any protection would amount to a great injustice to victims of illegal relationships. [6]Therefore, the Supreme Court underscored that: “there is an incredible need to expand Section 2(f) which characterizes “residential connections” in order to incorporate casualties of illicit connections who are poor, unskilled alongside their children who are conceived out of such connections and who don’t have any wellspring of salary.” Further, the Supreme Court mentioned: “Parliament to establish another enactment dependent on specific rules given by it so the casualties can be given protection from any cultural or societal wrong caused by such connections or relationships.”

[1](2011) 11 SCC 1

[2]AIR 1978 SC 1557

[3](2010) 9 SCC 209

[4](2010) 5 SCC 600

[5](2013) 15 SCC 755

[6] (2013) 15 SCC 755

This article has been written by Tanu Kapoor student at Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law.

Also Read – Why Indian Courts have Lots of Pending Cases?

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