Powers Of Karta In Hindu Undivided Family


In Joint Hindu family, the Karta occupies an important position. Karta’s position is unique and Karta possesses such powers which no other member of the family possesses.

He is the head of the family and acts on the behalf of other members but he is not partner as his powers are almost unlimited.


(1) Power of management:-

Karta’s power of management is almost absolute. He may manage the family business and affairs in the way he likes, he may mismanage and no one can question him about what he is doing. He has an obligation and duty to save or economise, no obligation to invest fund or to invest them properly. He may discriminate between the members of the family to some members he may give or and to others less but he cannot deny maintenance or use of the property by other members.

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(2) Right to income:-

It is the natural outcome of joint Hindu family that all the income of the joint family property should be brought to the common chest. All the income of the family is given to karta and he manages it. Whosoever every collects it hands over it to karta. It is the karta who allots funds to the members and look after their needs and requirements. So long as the family is joints and all members are living together no member can ask for for any specified number of share in the income.

(3) Right to representation:-

Karta is the person who represents the whole family in the matters relating to legal ,social and religious. He acts on the behalf of the family and his acts are binding on the entire joint family. The karta can enter into any transaction on the behalf of the family. Karta is the person who represents the family in suits and legal proceedings. Even when due to karta’s gross negligence ,it is not open to other members to have the decree set aside on that ground alone.

(4) Power of compromise:-

Karta has the power to compromise all disputes which are relating to family property and their management.  He can also compromise a suit pending in court of law and it is binding on all the members except when minor is a party to dispute than the compromise must be approved by court according to order 32 rule 7 of C.P.C.  He can also compromise family debts and other transactions but if act of compromise is not bona fide ,it can be challenged .

(5) Power to refer a dispute to arbitration:-

The Karta has the power to refer any dispute or disputed matter to arbitration and the award of arbitration will be binding on the joint family.

(6) Karta’s power to contract debts:-

The Karta has an implied authority to contract debts and pledge the credit and the property of the family for ordinary purposes of the family business.

(7) Power to enter into contracts:-

The Karta has the power to enter into contracts and such contracts are binding on the family.

(8) Power of acknowledgment:-

The Karta has power to acknowledge on behalf of the family any debt due to the family. He has the power to pay interest on a debt or to make part payment of the principal so that a fresh and new period of limitation may start.  The Karta has no power to acknowledge the time barred debt.

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The above mentioned are the powers of Karta, he can perform his functions in the way he likes the most. No member can ask him what he is doing but his act must be bona fide.


Content Writer, Law Corner, B.A.LL.B(Hons), 5th Semester, Unity Law and PG college

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