Date : 30-07-2018 12:29
INTRODUCTION: Adult couples living together without marriage are termed to be in a live-in relationship. India as a country has evolved majorly and gone to the way of accepting live in relationships during the past few years. This acceptance is yet to be reflected by the Indian orthodox society but the apex court of India has recognized such association and that’s what counts.
A live-in relationship is a one where two consenting adults lives under the same roof in a way that resembles a marriage. The idea has been wrongfully believed to be a western one, but the foundation lies on the freedom and equality of each person. Live in relationships prove to be quite successful as each of the people gets an opportunity to know and understand the other before actually tying the marriage knot.
This helps in unnecessary family drama and lengthy court proceedings. But every two heterosexual adults living together would not be legally considered to be in a live-in relationship unless they fulfill specific conditions. Walk in and out relationships and relationship just for sexual pleasure do not come within the ambit of live-in relationships.
· Duration: there is no exact time defined by any law or SC for which a couple has to be together in order to term their living as a live-in relationship.
· Sharing of household: it is one of the main requirements in order to obtain a status of the live-in relationship.
· Sharing of resources: this is considered to be a solid proof of the intention of the couple living together. For example, they have a joint bank account or invested in some business etc.
· Living in a domestic arrangement: it is also important as while deciding the issues if arises as to whether the couple was living together which indicates a marriage like an institution.
· Sexual relationship: couples living together merely for sexual pleasure and enjoyment does not fall into the category of live-in relationships.
· Intention: Intention of the parties living together must be clear as to sharing of household and through their conduct of everyday affairs like socializing with people or having children in order for the court to construe a marriage like the association.
VARIOUS RIGHTS AVAILABLE:
· Domestic Violence: Protection of domestic violence act, 2005 provides protection not only to married women but also women in a live-in relationship.
· Legitimacy of children: if an adult male and female in a live-in relationship has kids, rights of such children are protected as a legitimate one.
· Inheritance: In the light of recent judgments Children out of such association would be entitled to claim the property of the parents but not ancestral property.
· Maintenance to Wife: in recent cases, the Supreme Court has made the position clear with regard to providing maintenance to the wife if the relationship breaks down. As the cohabitation of the couple will be presumed to be a valid marriage a man is bound to maintain his live-in a partner in the same way as he had to if the partner was his wife.