Out of my salary of about Rs. 55,000 per month, I pay EMI of Rs. 25,000 every month and then there are other deductions from my salary. My take-home salary is only about Rs. 22,000 per month. My wife has filed a case under Section 125 of the Cr.P.C. against me for seeking maintenance for herself and for about minor son who is living with her. Someone told me that the maintenance amount is usually 30% to 40% of the salary. Will this maintenance amount be calculated on the basis of the gross salary or the take-home salary? If it is to be calculated on the gross salary, the maintenance amount would come to about Rs. 20,000 approximately, which is more or less equal to my take-home salary. My parents are also living with me and if my full take-home salary is given as maintenance to my wife and minor son, how will I survive and pay for the expenses of my parents and also in the EMI to the bank?
There is no hard and fast formula laid down in the law for calculating the maintenance to be paid to wife (and/or minor children). It all depends on the facts and circumstances of the case, including the income of the husband, income of wife (if any), number of other dependents, living standards of the parties, their life styles, their financial requirements, etc. It may be true that generally the maintenance may be in the range of about one-third of husband’s income, but there is no hard and fast rule and it all depends on the facts of each case.
You can show all relevant facts to the court, including deductions from your salary, your old parents being dependent on you, etc. The court would generally take all these aspects into consideration while deciding the maintenance.
In the worst scenario for you, if the court decides the maintenance amount which is almost equal to your take-home salary, you have the option of challenging that in the higher courts. If needed, you may also request the bank to reduce the EMI to adjust your take-home salary by showing the court order.
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