The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act


Traditional norms and values of the Indian society laid stress on providing care for the elderly. However, due to withering of the joint family system, a large number of elderly are not being looked after by their family. Consequently, many older persons, particularly widowed women are now forced to spend their twilight years all alone and are exposed to emotional neglect and to lack of physical and financial support. This clearly reveals that ageing has become a major social challenge and there is a need to give more attention to the care and protection for the older persons. Though the parents can claim maintenance under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, the procedure is both time-consuming as well as expensive. Hence, there is need to have simple, inexpensive and speedy provisions to claim maintenance for parents.

2. The Bill proposes to cast an obligation on the persons who inherit the property of their aged relatives to maintain such aged relatives and also proposes to make provisions for setting up oldage homes for providing maintenance to the indigent older persons.

The Bill further proposes to provide better medical facilities to the senior citizens and provisions for protection of their life and property.

3. The Bill, therefore, proposes to provide for:-
(a) appropriate mechanism to be set up to provide need-based maintenance to the parents and senior citizens
(b) providing better medical facilities to senior citizens
(c) for institutionalization of a suitable mechanism for protection of life and property of older persons.
(d) setting up of oldage homes in every district.

4. The Bill seeks to achieve the above objectives.

Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens


Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act 2007 [English] [Hindi]

Legal Right: Maintenance is the legal right of every parent and senior citizen. Abandonment and neglect of seniors is a cognizable offence. The offender is liable to be punished with imprisonment upto 3 months or fine upto Rupees Five Thousand (Rs.5000) or both.

Click here to find SUPREME COURT Judgments on Fraud and Deceit

Difference between Bill and Act

You might have noticed that the Statement of Objects & Reasons uses the phrase the Bill instead of the Act.

Well, that is because the Statement of Objects & Reasons is prepared when the draft of proposed legislation in the form of Bill is introduced in Parliament for discussion and approval. After approval from both houses of Parliament this draft goes to the President for his assent.

Bill is actually another name for the draft of proposed legislation. It is only after obtaining President’s assent that the Bill becomes an Act of Parliament.

Find More:

District Maintenance Officers in Delhi
Benefits, Concessions and Schemes for Senior Citizens in India
Old Age Homes in India  |   Old Age Homes in Delhi NCR
State Human Rights Commissions in India

News Links:

Bill to care for senior citizens
Jail for children who abandon parents


  1. It is nice to know that the Indian lawmakers are concerned about childless senior citizens. However, the recent bill has completely misunderstood their plight. Many of these people are unmarried due to financial problems, or family responsibilities in their early lives. In later years of their lives, they save so as not to be burden on anybody in their old age. People who befriend them are mostly borrowers keen on defaulting. When they ask for moneys, they are cruelly reminded –“you don’t have children, what do you need the moneys for” or similar statements. Even workplaces are no different. There is always somebody asking them to adopt their child or asking their savings for their children. Relatives take it for granted that the moneys will come to them, so they openly question, “how much are you writing to me”, for not having been there in hard times.

    Television serials highlight such nature of relatives, but law continues to presume that love and affection exists amongst all relatives, entitling them to the inheritance. There are laws against teasing widows but none to prevent teasing childless citizens. Their old age savings reflect their selfishness, rather than responsible behavior, and law seems to endorse that. People adopting a child are given a choice, but these people are forced to accept children of some colleague or relative towards whom they may have little or no affinity. Not everybody gets along with everybody. Surely, they should have a choice after having slogged throughout their lives.

    I feel the new bill will bring down the relatives on such helpless souls, and force them to part with their lifetime savings during their lifetime. This bill will make them more vulnerable to being abused, physically and verbally, and help the relatives to take away the funds by denying them food and medication. Giving a small room without adequate ventilation and care does not, after all amount to caring for elderly. They may well be able to afford additional cup of tea, which is denied to them, and may well desire to visit somebody, which is denied to them. They may have earned enough to have air-conditioned rooms, but it may be denied to them by the relatives once the bill is passed. Is such a senior citizen expected to knock the doors of law with frail health, and little money to hire lawyers in case of ill treatment?

    What about those who have already been physically abused by their relatives for money? Should they not have a fair chance to get away from this type of crowd? Could that not be the reason for them not daring to adopt and being victimized in their later lives by other people as “selfish”?

    Surely childless people should be allowed to select whom they trust as their caregivers, whether they are friends or relatives. And, the obligation should be imposed only on such friend or relative to ensure proper care. And to meet the expenses, these people should be allowed to even write away the properties that they have inherited, instead of allowing a cascade of non-caring relatives on them.

    I request people who feel similarly to respond and ensure that the relevant amendments are made to the bill.

  2. dhanabalan says

    having read the articles and interviews only once i read about false case of dowry and such attempts make the poor seniors get arrested. why not the law be stringent against the daughters in law of the family and her parents who indulge i n harassing the son of the family who becomes a victim and he is silent for running the family on peaceful lines. why not law insist on evidance before arresting the senoior citizens. same is the case of corruption. the daughters in law harass their husbandsfor corruptive pratices to live beyond means comparing others. if the law is strictly followed our culture can be saved

  3. The Law is most timely and excellent,but needs carefull study of its all lines,not to leave loop holes.

  4. Dear Sir,
    Could you give me some names and Address of NGO or Organizations working for Counselling to Elderly on their Rights for being cared by their sons and Right to punish those who punish them.


  5. ved prakash says

    The pitiable condition of the parents and elderly citizens is now well known to all of us .trend of nuclear families ,increasing greed for material possession and a sharp decline in the social values have contributed to aggravate the problem .The law enacted may not by itself prove to be a wholesome solution .The need of the hour is that the law is applied rigorously and the people are reminded of the great traditions which stressed on the care and respect for parents and elderly persons.But then it is a good way to enforce moral values by providing them with legal sanction.

  6. How has the court interpreted this Act?

  7. Abhijit Das says

    All said and done, how many cases have actually seen the real story. I know a mother who tried to seperate her son & DIL because of EGO and finally the family shattered .. mother in one place, father in another place while the son & DIL are together. Father ran away when a baby was due to born. Mother took the son to court since father ran away, as if son was responcible for runing away. Why the son & DIL will have to look after the parents because of the ruling ? Who is going to validate this …. because if the matters goes to court, it call for expenditure. Will govt take the cost of hiring lawyers for all ? Just wonder why are we so bias in making rules ??

  8. sanjay k. vishwakarma says

    Presently i scholar of LL.M.(Human Rights)from NLIU-Bhopal(M.P.) I wrote my desseration on the topic on “Role of NGOs to protection and promotion of senior citizens rights in india”:-In context of Maintenance of parents &senior citizen act,2007″.
    sir i want to know your guidence regarding my desseration .
    I highly Obliged to your support&highlited in my written summition.
    Thanking you.

  9. Hi,

    I would like to have your guidance regarding Elder Abuse by DIL and her parents.It is the bad infuence of the mother of DIL,which is causing turmoil and rejection of the parents resulting in abandoning them. Is there any way by which one can send letters to the parents of DIL informing them about the The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 and also motivate such people (who stay in Faridabad).

  10. Aman Inder Singh says

    Sir I am doing Ph.D. on this new Act. Can you give me some material on laws prevalant in foreign countries so that i can make comparative study.

  11. Subodh Kumar says

    I would like to attract attention on the Maintenance………………act-2007.I think the act will not apply to govt .employees. I one want leave from office, it can be denied.According to leave rule it is privilege and can not be claim as a matter of right. Under those circumstances if parents fall ill ,their son who is govt servant might not get leave from the organization concerned and so one is not able to protect life/ health of one’s parents.The leave rules also to be modified and to be made liberal.

  12. Suvarna Venkatesh says

    Please let me know all the sections related to Elderly parents. If the parents intentionally harass the son and his wife, what could be done? There are laws only for the Parents not for the Sons who suffer from the parents?

  13. hi..

    If the parents have four sons how should each son maintain the parents? What if only one son is willing to look after the parents and others dump the parents? pls reply as early as possible

  14. kps.sundaram says

    i am 67 yrs an ex-serviceman from navy & my wife is 63yrs.both have age related health problems ,taking regular treatments from defence source. i get a pension of rs .4900.
    my present living house is myself earnd property, which was in the name of my wife.We gave this house to my eldest son , ( who was a very well placed nri, in u.k)throgh a irrevocable registerd settlement gift deed.The Object of this deed was to enable my son to devlope this property further by constructing 1st floor etc, for which ownership title will be essential.Other than this property my late son owns immovable & moovale proerties worth around rs.5crores.(My son died in london on 29-09-2008.)i have one more married son & a married daughter to whom i have not given anything.And my present living house is my only property,for which my widow daughterlaw . claims her share of property as per legal heirship. she gets 2/3 share of the property, as there is a minor grandson.But she is legal heir & owner for propertys worth in crores.And where as for me this my only dwelling house.She is giving me great harassment demanding my living house. The house was given to my son as irrevocable ,registerd ,settlement on 5th sept.2005.Now at my age of 67yrs, can not give this only house to my daughter in law, who has got plenty of everything. i dont want to live in penury . Is there a place in law that as senior citizens, that irreovcable gift settlement deed (registerd) can be revoked or void & allow us to live our short remaining life with dignity.thanks. kpssm

  15. my mom is 69 yrs old widow living with my brother but ever since he got married trouble has broken out within the family unfortunately all because of my sister-in-law who all so happens to be my maternal cousin.
    for most part of the year my brother works abroad & my mom & she are alone to which she starts all the problems using abusive language & threatning her saying she will make sure my brother stops supporting her, & why dont you live with your daughters why don’t they support you etc.. the unfortunate part of this is our husbands are not willing to do so saying why should they as they have their own parents & we both ie. my sister & my self are house wifes so where do we get the finance to do so
    i would just like to know if there is someone out there who can give me advice in this regard i would appriciate it as i do not want my mom to suffer in her old age with her daughter-in- laws ill treatment

  16. S Basavaraj says

    MY dear kps sundaram,

    you have a remedy to revoke the irrevocable gift deed executed.
    plz look into the provision section 23 of maintenance and welfare of parents and senior citizens act 2007.plz approach any of ngo’sfor help if you require.

  17. My father, a senior citizen,has given a personal guarantee to a bank for a business loan taken by a company. In the event of non-payment of dues can the bank attach his only residential flat that he owns? Is there any legal protection to safeguard this property, as we have no other place to go?

    • N.Mahalingam says

      If your father is a Director/Partner/Authorised Signatory of the Company in which he works and has signed this personal guarantee for the purpose of securing a loan to this Company, then he is rendered liable, if the means of recovery from from all other gurantors/securities charged to this loan are truly found to be bleak, with the Company showing negative networth…..14.04.2014

  18. dr. urvashi singh says

    I want to set up an old age home with an orphanage please guide me about basic things

  19. shradhdha says

    My elderly aunt is being ill treated by my sister-in-law who every now and then threatens her that she will put her in jail. The languages used to my aunt are very abusive. My aunt is 84 year old lady who never speaks against any one. She is only protected by our maid. My sister-in law does all these non-sense when my brother is not their. Can anyone guide me how i can protect her from this abuse.

    • Preeti Goel says

      If you wish to protect your aunt you need to shed your fear first. Talk to your brother, apprise him of your observations. As children one is liable to maintain one’s elders/parents. Your brother can play a vital role, for he is legally responsible for safety and maintenance of your aunt. If he refuses to pay heed, please involve a considerate neighbour or a relative or a counsellor or an NGO who could make your sis-in-law see reason. If nothing works then please seek help from the senior citizen cell of your local police.

  20. AK Wadhera says

    Is this act applicable in Uttar Pradesh. I am a male of 67 years and is being teased by my wife and family members. I would like to avail the benefits of this act and live peacefully alone. Pl. advise. Thanks

    • Preeti Goel says

      Yes, the Act is applicable in Uttar Pradesh. Parents and Senior Citizens who are unable to maintain themselves can claim maintenance from their children or relatives who would inherit their properties.

  21. sanjeev Bhatia says

    Among two brothers one is married and I’d earning much money but still unwilling to take care or support his father who lives with other unwell and weak financially son. The financially weak and unwell and unmarried son has to support or take care singly with great difficulties in life. How can law support sir give justice to this unwell son and his old father.

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