In India, Marriage May Not Support Alimony Claim if Premarital Religious Conversion Can’t Be Proved Twenty Years Later or Wasn’t Sufficiently Spiritually Motivated

Out of India …

Wife files for divorce from Husband in twenty year marriage.

Wife asks the Indian divorce court to award her alimony and spousal support.

Wife alleges that she converted to the Hindu religion prior to their marriage, and that she and Husband had a religious wedding ceremony in accordance with the Hindu religion.

Under Indian divorce law governing marriages between spouses of the Hindu faith, a wife may seek alimony – but apparently not so between spouses of other faiths.

Despite the length of this couple’s marriage, however, the Indian high court denies Wife’s request for alimony, finding that Wife has not proved that she did in fact convert to Hindu prior to the marriage and that the marriage may therefore not have been valid from its inception.

The Indian court appears to rationalize, in essence, that too many Indians insincerely convert from one religion to another, not for spiritual motivations, but to manipulate the law to their own legal advantage in family court, or otherwise.

With regard to the particular case before it, the appellate court apparently finds that Wife duplicitously spent twenty years of her life in a sham and/or fraudulent marriage, scheming all along to capitalize on the alimony law available to Indian Hindus, in the event the couple ever divorced.

While this case is from India, spouses should be aware that alimony laws in the United States are being reviewed, challenged and, in some cases, updated to reflect changes in the times.

Read more in this Times of India article: HC refuses alimony to ‘converted’ woman.