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07 June, 2016

Couples in India who have premarital sex to be considered 'MARRIED': A Landmark Judgement by Madras High Court


Couples who have premarital sex to be considered 'married': Madras High Court

The couples who lived together as spouses are deemed to be married even though they not legally married - A Landmark Judgement

On last Monday The High Court of Madras passed a landmark Judgment by Justice Karnan awarding rights to couples who may not legally married but have lived together in every other way as spouses while ruling on the issue of domestic partnership.

Gems from justice Karnan’s order:

“...if any couple choose to consummate their sexual cravings, then that act becomes a total commitment with adherence to all consequences that may follow, except on certain exceptional considerations… Legal rights applicable to normal wedded couples will also be applicable to couples who have had sexual relationships which are established...”

“...It is not disputed that the petitioner has been a spinster before she gave birth and that the respondent was a bachelor before developing sexual relationship with the petitioner. Both of them led their marital life under the same shelter and begot two children. Therefore, the petitioner’s rank has been elevated as the `wife’ of the respondent and likewise, the respondent’s rank has been elevated as the `husband’ of the petitioner. Therefore, the children born to them are legitimate children and the petitioner is the legitimate wife of the respondent...”

He said that either party to a relationship could approach a family court for a declaration of marital status by supplying documentary proof for a sexual relationship. In this case, the man had officially admitted that the woman was his wife, by signing the ‘live birth report’ of his second child and giving his consent for a Caesarean section for the birth, according to the court. Furthermore, he ordered the ‘husband’ to pay monthly maintenance of Rs 500 to his ‘wife’

But the said judgment not at all ruling that all pre-marital sex by an unmarried couple of legally marriageable age is considered married, and the ‘husband’ in such marriage cannot marry someone else without getting a court decree of divorce from the ‘wife’ as reported in THE HINDU. However the above Judgment elevates the status of the couples as Husband and wife had continuous sexual relationships and lives together as spouses as live in relationship even though they are not legally wedded.


It is a landmark and progressive judgment benefits and protects women who are always victims of pre marital or non marital sex. We'll update this very shortly with full judgement.

Sneha Jaiswal, Delhi | GeekUpd8 Author: Sneha Jaiswal - ♀ GeekUpd8 Author                         GeekUpd8  Find Geek Upd8 on Facebook  Follow Geek Upd8 on Twitter    Subscribe Geek Upd8 on your Browser
An Advocate enthusiast from Delhi, India. She joined us in Law Reporter (a Geek Upd8 law project) in June,2013. She is very interested in criminal and cyber laws.

15 Responses to “Couples in India who have premarital sex to be considered 'MARRIED': A Landmark Judgement by Madras High Court”

Gazala Aafreen said...

20 June 2013 at 01:34

mam, if m nt wrng, a prsn can force his fioncee for to commit such thngs,even if a year is stil remaining for der marriage, & wud easily say dat itr no wrong as d hon'ble court permits him for such act. Mam, its a matter of gr8 cncrn nt bcoz dese rituals to wich d court is describng as only d formalities is wrong, even dat judge wud hav performd such rites, i challenge. Madam sorry to say bt indian judges hamesha hi aisa krte,aur badme inke failaye hue raayte ko s.c. Ko saaf krna padta h.. Aap sahi keh rhi h, bt aap dekhiega k law breakers r alwez ahead of law makers

Adv Manish Agrawal said...

20 June 2013 at 01:35

and what about sec 7 of hindu marriage Act which requires saptpadi and other ceremonies and various judgement of s.c which mandates saptpadi. I think s.c shall overrule it bcoz it will have repercussion will not fulfill social purpose still sprit of judgement is appreciable.

Lawyersparty India said...

20 June 2013 at 01:36

judgement only discreation of judge

Minu Gupta said...

20 June 2013 at 01:37

can u give me. no/listing os the judgement...or where it is notified?

Puneet Batish said...
20 June 2013 at 01:38

We'll update the judgement very shortly right here

Puneet Batish said...
26 June 2013 at 22:27

Couples in India who have premarital sex to be considered 'married' : Madras High Court, posted on Geek Upd8, thanks to Advocate Sneha Jaiswal, Punit, Jatinder -

DigvijayMote said...

30 June 2013 at 19:22

Creative Discussion. In India No one knows what is Law & not!
This Judgment, adds more flavour for confused Citizens.
While Cases in Police & Courts increase!
Cases shall pull on for long years in interpretation of law

Rajesh Thakur said...
7 June 2016 at 22:27

Advocate Rajesh Parmar (HP high court Shimla) this is not a landmark judgment. Every case has its own facts. Though discretion of Hon'ble Judge is welcome able.

Rajesh Thakur said...
7 June 2016 at 22:28

Advocate Rajesh Parmar (HP high court Shimla) this is not a landmark judgment. Every case has its own facts. Though discretion of Hon'ble Judge is welcome able.

Anonymous said...

7 June 2016 at 23:49

This is not a landmark judgment and can not be used in all cases. Here couple have lived together and had two children also and that is more than just living together before marriage.

Anonymous said...

8 June 2016 at 02:55

What if a woman have sex on pretext of marriage with a man and then in future refuses to marry... What about such person. Our law is totally biassed. Women shall be kept as were treated in past era. Thats better. If you want to give them rights then give responsibility also.

giri p said...
8 June 2016 at 06:56

Indian judicairy is becoming more and more emotional and personal....judgements are mostly nit based on law but on personal views of judges...where will law and justice survive ...judge applies logic in case of women but in case of men...they speak only law not logic...pity on this nation...

giri p said...
8 June 2016 at 07:01

Can i ask one question ..if premarital sex is equivalent to marriage then many girls and modern day feminists say having pre marital sex is there right the question how can one women who marries a man if had pre marital sex with someone can become his as per ruling and law she cannot be wife of two by day indian n its judicial system is becoming more confusing and conflicting in every perpective bcoz of some illogical judgements being given

Unknown said...
8 June 2016 at 11:31

so now having sex is equivalent to getting married!! wow, woman protection law they say. and women now have unfair advantage and can use it immorally they don't say. sex is a natural biological act between two human beings irrespective of gender, religion, ritual or anything. and in india, they always has to complicate that. earlier with bloody rituals, religious means, moral acts and now with laws too. pathetic!

Deepakar Livingston said...
8 June 2016 at 13:01

This is an old order passed in 2013. Do not mislead people!

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