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Senior Citizens Protection

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Recent Updates

Frequent questions, quickly answered.

Parents and grandparents who are unable to maintain themselves from their own income can demand maintenance from their children as defined above; and “Childless Senior Citizens” who are unable to maintain themselves from their own income can demand maintenance from their relatives as defined above.

It includes provision for food, clothing, residence, medical attendance and treatment. Maximum amount which may be ordered for maintenance of a senior citizen by the Tribunal shall be such as prescribed by the State Government which shall not exceed Rs. 10,000/- per month.

Senior citizens, Parents and grand-parents who are unable to maintain themselves from their own income and property are entitled to demand maintenance from their children and specified relatives respectively with sufficient means.

It is the obligation of the children and specified relatives with sufficient means to provide maintenance for their parents and childless senior citizen respectively.

Application for maintenance may be made by the senior citizen or parent to the Tribunal under Section 4 in layperson’s language giving names, full details and addresses of the persons from whom they are demanding maintenance. If there is more than one child or relative, they may claim maintenance from one or all of them depending on their means of income.

Maintenance

Maintenance proceedings may be initiated against any child/children or relative in any district where the parent or senior citizen lives or last lived or where the child/children or relative live. If such applicants are incapable of making an application themselves, any other person or registered voluntary organization authorized by him/her can make the application. The Tribunal can take suo motu cognizance and proceed. Upon receipt of the application, the Tribunal would issue notices to the children, conduct hearings, take evidence and order maintenance. Tribunal may also refer the case for reconciliation or pass interim orders for maintenance.

If the children or relatives fail to pay the ordered maintenance without sufficient reason for 3 months after its due date. The senior citizen can approach the Tribunal again who may impose a fine or order imprisonment of the child/relative up to a month or until payment is made whichever is earlier.

A State Government may establish, in a phased manner, sufficient senior citizen homes and maintain the same for indigent or abandoned and neglected (by their kith and kin) beginning with at least one Old Age Home in each district sufficient to accommodate a minimum of 150 elderly. State Government may also prescribe scheme for management of old age homes, set standards and prescribe minimum services for medical care and entertainment of the elderly in the Old Age Homes.

Under Section 24, if anybody who has responsibility for the care or protection of a senior citizen leaves him/her in any place, with the intention of wholly abandoning him/her, such person shall be punishable under the Act with imprisonment of either three months or fine upto Rs. 5,000 or both. The offence would be cognizable and will be tried by a Magistrate.

An important provision has been made for the elderly to claim their property back from children. If given conditionally after commencement of the Act on promise of looking after their needs and amenities if such promise is not fulfilled.

Under Section 23

Under Section 23, if after commencement of the act any Parents or senior citizens have transferred their property to their children or relatives on the condition. And then they would provide certain maintenance and amenities to the senior citizen. But subsequently neglect or refuse to do so the parents or senior citizens can get such transfers voided (cancelled) at their option by having such transfer treated as a fraudulent or coercive acquisition and seek return of their property so transferred.

  • Constitution of Maintenance Tribunals and Appellate Tribunals by the State Governments in all Sub- Divisions and States within 6 months of commencement of this Act
  • State Governments may make rules for carrying out the purposes of the Act by notification in the Official Gazette.
  • Summary trials by the Tribunals for passing orders for maintenance.
  • Lawyers excluded from the proceedings.
  • Elderly can choose to seek maintenance either under this Act or under the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code 1973 if applicable but not under both the provisions.
  • “No Civil Court to have jurisdiction in respect of any matter to which any provision of this Act applies
  • No injunction shall be granted by any Civil Court in respect of anything which is done or intended to be done by or under this Act.” (Section 27)
  • State Govt to designate District Social Welfare Officer or an equivalent officer as Maintenance Officer.
  • Maintenance Officer can represent a parent or senior citizen if he/she wants.
  • It may establish and maintain sufficient senior citizen homes for indigent or abandoned and neglected (by their kith and kin) beginning with one in each district sufficient to house 150 elderly.
  • State Government may prescribe a scheme for management of old age homes, setting standards and minimum services necessary for medical care and entertainment of the elderly
  • Government to establish specific medical facilities, allocate doctors/hospital beds, expand treatment for chronic, terminal and degenerative diseases; and conduct research on ailments of the elderly and ageing.
  • State Government to take all measures to sensitize and orient the police and judiciary regarding protection of life and property of the elderly and provisions of this act.
  • Senior citizen- means an Indian who attained the age of 60 years or above
  • Parent- means father or mother whether biological, adoptive or step father or step mother, whether or not father or mother is a senior citizen
  • Maintenance includes provision for food, clothing, residence, medical attendance and treatment
  • Children include son, daughter, grandson, grand-daughter but does not include a minor
  • An application for can be filed by the senior citizen or a parent himself, or if such person is incapable, then by any other person or any registered organisation authorised by him. After receiving the application, the Tribunal may issue notice to the respondent-children/relative and provide them time to furnish their reply. Such application for maintenance should be disposed of within 90 days from the date of service of notice of application to the respondent. However, the Tribunal can extend time in exceptional circumstances after recording reason.
  • A senior citizen who has transferred his property either moveable or immovable, by way of gift or otherwise to his children or relative and thereafter the child or relative refuses to look after the Senior Citizen/parent; the transfer of property shall be deemed to have been made by fraud, coercion or undue influence and the appropriate court can declare such transfer as void and the property can be reclaimed.
  • Abandoning a senior citizen in any place by a person who is having the care or protection of such senior citizen is a criminal offence and such person shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months or fine which may extend to five thousand rupees or both.
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