Essentials of Adoption under Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956

November 9, 2019, 4:42 pm | Updated July 9, 2021, 11:16 pm IST
Essentials of Adoption under Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956
What does adoption entail or the basics of adoption under Hindu Adoption and maintenance Act, 1956 have been discussed.
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Chapter II of the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956 is empowering for any couple seeking to adopt a child. Adoption in layman's terms refers to the creation of a parent-child relationship which is non-existent through the natural process.

In the olden days, adoption amongst Hindus was considered as an alternative to the lack of a male offspring. Previously there wasn’t any adoption law as such but the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956 validates the law in regards to adoption and maintenance.

Knowledge is lacking in regards to laws thoroughly detailing adoption procedures and seeking online legal advice for gaining knowledge in regards to the procedure and ensuring that the adoption is indeed valid.

Any Hindu male is eligible to adopt a male or a female child provided the child isn’t a minor or is not of an unsound mind. If the husband has a wife who is alive then, in that case, the male would qualify to adopt a child. Nonetheless, the wife’s consent is unnecessary if she has adopted a reclusive lifestyle or is not a Hindu anymore or is confirmed unsound by the competent jurisdiction of the court.

As laid down in Section 8 any unmarried or once married female or a widower, or if married, there has been a  dissolution of marriage or a widower or has conclusively forsaken the world or is not a Hindu anymore after adopting or converting to another religion or has been declared to be of unsound mind is empowered to adopt a son or a daughter. The Act is a prescription or recommendation in regards to who would qualify as an adoptive parent of a child but also lays down the people lawfully authorized to give a child for adoption.

According to Section 9 if the child’s father is alive then only he is empowered to handover a child for adoption nonetheless obtaining the mother’s consent is essential. A mother too can hand over her child for adoption only if the child’s father has expired or had assumed a reclusive lifestyle or has converted to another religion or is declared to be of unsound mind or has converted to another religion.

Nonetheless, in cases of the father and the mother both expired or are leading a reclusive lifestyle as one who has forsaken the world or the child has been abandoned or through court declaration is of unsound mind or where the child’s parentage is unknown, the child’s guardian may handover the child for adoption with the court’s permission granted previously to any person inclusive of the guardian. Prior to the court’s granting of permission to give the child for adoption, the welfare of the child ought to be considered.  

Call 7604047601 for a consultation with registered expert adoption lawyers on Vidhikarya.

Written By:
Avik  Chakravorty

Avik Chakravorty

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