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Subordinate Courts Separationand Maintenance Act Cap 153 - as Plain Text by MWakili

LAWS OF KENYA The SubordinaTe CourTS (SeparaTion and MainTenanCe) aCT Chapter 153 Revised Edition 2010 (1962) Published by the National Council for Law Reporting with the Authority of the Attorney General www.kenyalaw.org 2 Subordinate Courts CAP.

153 (Separation and Maintenance) [Rev.

2010 CHAPTER 153 THE SUBORDINATE COURTS (SEPARATION AND MAINTENANCE) ACT arraNGeMeNt OF SeCtIONS Section 1-Short title.

2-Interpretation.

3-Application for order.

4-Powers of court.

5-Limitation of powers of court.

6-Court may vary or discharge order.

7-Procedure.

8-Order not enforceable if parties reside together.

9-Change of address.

10-Interim order for maintenance.

11-Enforcement of orders.

12-Application by Attorney-General as to children.

13-Saving.

14-Residence.

15-Application of Act.

16-Rules.

Subordinate Courts 3 Rev.

2010] (Separation and Maintenance) CAP.

153 CHAPTER 153 THE SUBORDINATE COURTS (SEPARATION AND Cap.

6 (1948), MAINTENANCE) ACT 32 of 1961, L.N.

2/1964.

st Commencement: 1 February, 1929 An Act to confer jurisdiction on certain magistrates in reference to married women 1.

This Act may be cited as the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Short title.

Maintenance) Act.

2.

In this Act, except where the context otherwise requires- Interpretation.

L.N.

2/1964, L.N.

67/1982, court means a subordinate court of the rst class; L.N.

297/1995.

habitual drunkard or habitual drug-taker means a person who, not being amenable to any jurisdiction in lunacy, is notwithstanding, by reason of habitual intemperate drinking of intoxicating liquor or habitual taking or using, except upon medical advice, of any opiate, at times dangerous to himself or to others or incapable of managing himself or his affairs; opiate means opium, coca leaf, crude cocaine, ecgonine, bhang, morphine, cocaine, heroin, Indian hemp or charas.

3.

(1) Any woman may apply to the court for an order or orders Application for under this Act on any of the following grounds, namely- order.

(a) that her husband has been convicted of an offence against 32 of 1961, Sch.

her under any of sections 234, 236, 237, 239 and 251 of the Cap.

63.

Penal Code; (b) that her husband has deserted her; (c) that her husband has been guilty of persistent cruelty to her or her children or of wilful neglect to provide reasonable maintenance for her or her children whom he is legally liable to maintain; (d) that her husband has, while suffering from a venereal disease and knowing that he was so suffering, insisted upon having sexual intercourse with her; (e) that her husband has compelled her to submit herself to prostitution; 4 Subordinate Courts CAP.

153 (Separation and Maintenance) [Rev.

2010 (f) that her husband is an habitual drunkard or habitual drug- taker.

(2) When the husband has in the opinion of the court been guilty of such conduct as was likely to result and has resulted in his wife submitting herself to prostitution, he shall for the purposes of this Act be deemed to have compelled her so to submit herself.

(3) An application under this Act shall be made to the court having jurisdiction within the area in which any such conviction has taken place or in which the cause of complaint has wholly or partially arisen.

(4) For the purposes of this Act, children whom he is legally liable to maintain includes, in addition to children of the marriage, any child of the wife born before such marriage (whether such child is legitimate or illegitimate) until such child attains the age of sixteen years or until the death of its mother, whichever event rst occurs.

Powers of court.

4.

The court to which any application under this Act is made may make an order or orders containing all or any of the following provisions, namely- (a) a provision that the applicant be no longer bound to cohabit with her husband (which provision while in force shall have the effect in all respects of a decree of judicial separation on the ground of cruelty); (b) a provision that the legal custody of any children of the marriage between the applicant and her husband while under the age of sixteen years be committed to the applicant; (c) a provision that the husband shall pay to the applicant personally or for her use to any ofcer of the court or third person on her behalf such monthly sum as the court, having regard to the means both of the husband and wife, considers reasonable; (d) a provision for payment by the applicant or the husband or both of them of the costs of the court and such reasonable costs of either of the parties as the court may think t.

Limitation of powers 5.

No order shall be made under this Act on the application of a of court.

married woman if it is proved that such married woman has committed an act of adultery, provided the husband has not condoned or connived at, or by his wilful neglect or misconduct conduced to, the act of adultery.

Subordinate Courts 5 Rev.

2010] (Separation and Maintenance) CAP.

153 6.

(1) The court may, on the application of the married woman or Court may vary of the husband and upon cause being shown upon fresh evidence to the or discharge satisfaction of the court, at any time alter, vary or discharge any such order.

order, and may upon any such application from time to time increase or diminish the amount of any payment ordered to be made.

(2) If any married woman upon whose application an order has been made under this Act voluntarily resumes cohabitation with her husband, the order shall cease to have effect on the resumption of such cohabitation, and if she commits an act of adultery such order shall on proof thereof be discharged: Provided that the court may, if it thinks t - (i) refuse to discharge the order, if in the opinion of the court such act of adultery as aforesaid was conduced to by the failure of the husband to make such payments as in the opinion of the court he was able to make; and (ii) in the event of the order being discharged, make a new order that the legal custody of the children of the marriage shall continue to be committed to the wife, and that the husband shall pay to the wife or to any ofcer of the court or third person on her behalf such monthly sum as the court considers reasonable in the circumstances of the case for the maintenance of each such child until the child attains the age of sixteen years: Provided that the total monthly sum ordered to be paid under this paragraph shall not exceed four hundred shillings; and in making such an order the court shall have regard primarily to the interests of the children.

7.

In the case of the conviction of a husband, under any of the Procedure.

sections of the Penal Code referred to in paragraph (a) of subsection (1) 32 of 1961, Sch., of section 3 of this Act, of any offence against his wife, her application Cap.

63.

may by leave of the court be made by summons to be issued and made returnable immediately upon such conviction.

8.

Save in the case of an order made under section 12 of this Act Order not upon the application of the Attorney-General, no order made under this enforceable if Act shall be enforceable and no liability shall accrue under any such order parties reside whilst the married woman with respect to whom such order was made together.

resides with her husband, and any such order shall cease to have effect if for a period of three months after it is made the married woman continues to reside with her husband.

6 Subordinate Courts CAP.

153 (Separation and Maintenance) [Rev.

2010 Change of 9.

Any person for the time being under an obligation to make address.

payments (including costs) under an order made under this Act shall give notice to such person (if any) as may be specied in the order of any change of address, and any person failing to give such notice without reasonable excuse shall be guilty of an offence and liable to a ne not exceeding one hundred shillings.

Interim order for 10.

(1) Where on the hearing of an application for an order of maintenance.

maintenance the application is adjourned for any period exceeding one week, the court may order that the husband do pay to the wife, or to an ofcer of the court or third person on her behalf, such weekly sum as the court considers reasonable in the circumstances of the case for the maintenance of the wife and any child or children in her custody until the nal determination of the case: Provided that the order directing such payment shall not remain in operation for more than three months from the date on which it was made.

(2) Any such order shall be enforced in like manner as if it were a nal order of the court.

Enforcement of 11.

(1) Any sum ordered to be paid under this Act shall, without orders.

prejudice to any other mode of recovery, be a civil debt recoverable 32 of 1961, Sch.

summarily.

(2) A person making default in complying with an order made by a court under this Act in relation to any matter other than the payment of money may be sentenced to imprisonment until he has remedied his default: Provided that a person shall not for non-compliance with an order of a court, whether made by one or more orders, to do or abstain from doing any act or thing be liable under this subsection to imprisonment for a period or periods amounting in the aggregate to more than six months.

Application by Attorney-General 12.

(1) In any case where a woman is dead, or has committed an as to children.

act of adultery, or is absent from Kenya, the Attorney-General may make application to the court in respect of her children if he is satised that such woman would have had reasonable grounds for applying to the court for an order under this Act if she had been alive, or had not committed an act of adultery, or she had been present in Kenya, as the case may be.

(2) The Attorney-General on any such application may ask for an order giving directions as to the legal custody of the children of such woman, and as to the payment by the husband of such woman of reasonable maintenance in respect of any such children whom such husband is legally liable to maintain.

Subordinate Courts 7 Rev.

2010] (Separation and Maintenance) CAP.

153 (3) On any such application by the Attorney-General, the court may make such order or orders giving such directions as it may in its discretion think t; and any such order or orders shall be enforceable in like manner as any other order or orders made under this Act.

(4) The court may, in accordance with subsection (1) of section 6 of this Act, at any time alter, vary or discharge any order made under this section; an application for such alteration, variation or discharge may be made by the Attorney-General, or by the woman in respect of whose children the order has been made, or by the husband of such woman if he has been ordered to make payments in respect of such children, but before the making of any such application by such woman or her husband notice thereof shall in every case be served on the Attorney-General.

13.

Nothing in this Act shall be deemed to affect the provisions of Saving.

the Matrimonial Causes Act.

Cap.

152.

14.

Save in the case of an application made under section 12 of this Residence.

Act by the Attorney-General, a court shall entertain proceedings under this Act only in cases where one of the parties has at the time of the issue of the summons his or her usual place of residence in Kenya.

15.

This Act shall apply only in cases where the husband and wife Application of have been married within the denition of the term marriage contained Act.

in section 2 of the Matrimonial Causes Act.

Cap.

152.

Rules.

16.

The Chief Justice may make rules of court- (a) prescribing the forms to be used and the fees to be paid in proceedings under this Act; (b) prescribing the procedure to be followed on applications under this Act; and (c) generally for the carrying out of the provisions of this Act.

8 Subordinate Courts CAP.

153 (Separation and Maintenance) [Rev.

2010 [Subsidiary] SUBSIDIARY LEGISLATION L.N.342/1961, Rules under section 16 LN.

2/1964, LN.

67/1982, THE SUBORDINATE COURTS (SEPARATION AND LN.297/1995.

MAINTENANCE) RULES Citation.

1.

These Rules may be cited as the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Rules.

Use of forms.

2.

The forms used for the purpose of the Act shall, with such variation as the circumstances of each case may require, be those set out in the Schedule to these Rules.

Fees.

3.

The fees payable in proceedings under the Act shall, unless remitted in L.N.

297/1995, whole or in part by a magistrate having jurisdiction be- L.N.

67/1982.

sh.

cts.

on ling a complaint or application 300 00 on taking out a witness summons.100 00 on taking out any other summons.

100 00 For the service of each document on a party, witness or other person: (i) Within two miles of the court issuing it.150 00 (ii)Beyond that distance up to ten miles.300 00 (iii) Beyond ten miles.

400 00 SCHEDULE ( r.

2) Form 1 GeNeral FOrM OF COMplaINt by a MarrIed WOMaN In the Court of the.

Magistrate at.

In the matter of the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Act Maintenance Cause No.

.

of 19.

THE COMPLAINT of.

of.

married woman (hereinafter called the complainant), who states that her husband.

of.

(hereinafter called the defendant) was on the.

day of .,19.

convicted of an offence against her under section [234] [236] [237] [239] [251] of the Penal Code.

or Subordinate Courts 9 Rev.

2010] (Separation and Maintenance) CAP.

153 [Subsidiary] Form 1- (Contd.) on the .day of .,19., deserted her, the complainant or on the .day of .,19.

and on other days prior thereto has been guilty of persistent cruelty to her, the complainant.

or on the.

day of ., 19.

and on other days prior thereto has been guilty of persistent cruelty to the child[ren] of the marriage.

or on the.

day of ., 19.

and on other days prior thereto has been guilty of wilful neglect to provide reasonable maintenance for her, the complainant [and/or for her infant child[ren]] whom he was then and now is legally liable to maintain.

or while suffering from a certain venereal disease, and knowing that he was so suffering, insisted upon having sexual intercourse with her, the complainant.

or has compelled her, the complainant, to submit herself to prostitution.

or is an habitual drunkard or habitual drug-taker.

WHEREFORE the complainant pursuant to the statute in that case made and provided, applies that an order be made: - That the complainant be no longer bound to cohabit with her husband, the defendant.

That the legal custody of the child[ren] of the marriage between the complainant and the defendant namely:-.

aged.

years.

aged.

years.

aged.

years.

aged.

years while under the age of 16 years to be committed to the complainant.

That the defendant shall pay to the complainant such monthly sum as the Court shall consider reasonable [together with such further sum for the maintenance of [each] such child[ren] until he [they] shall [respectively] attain the age of 16 years.

10 Subordinate Courts CAP.

153 (Separation and Maintenance) [Rev.

2010 [Subsidiary] Form 1 - (Contd.) That the costs of the Court and of the complainant shall be paid by the defendant.

Taken before me.

day of ., 19.

.

Complainant.

.

Magistrate.

Form 2 SuMMONS tO deFeNdaNt In the Court of the.

Magistrate at.

In the matter of the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Act Maintenance Cause No.

.

of 19.

.

Complainant against.

Defendant To:.

.

.

WHEREAS your attendance is necessary to answer a complaint, a copy of which is attached: YOU ARE HEREBY summoned to appear in this Court at.

in the fore [after] noon on the.

day of ., 19.

to answer the said complaint.

Dated this.

day of ., 19.

.

Magistrate.

Take notice that the Court will require your personal attendance on the hearing of the complaint.

Subordinate Courts 11 Rev.

2010] (Separation and Maintenance) CAP.

153 [Subsidiary] Form 3 INterIM Order ON adjOurNMeNt In the Court of the.

Magistrate at.

In the matter of the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Act Maintenance Cause No.

.

of 19.

.

Complainant against.

Defendant It beING deCIded that the hearing of the complaint herein be adjourned until the.

day of.

19.

It IS Ordered that the defendant do pay to the complainant [an ofcer of the Court for the complainants use] [.

on behalf of the complainant] the sum of.

weekly for her maintenance [together with the monthly sum of.

for the maintenance of [each of] the child[ren] of the marriage, namely .], from henceforth until the nal determination of the case or until the expiry of the period of three months beginning at the date hereof whichever be the earlier.

Dated this.

day of .,19.

.

Magistrate.

12 Subordinate Courts CAP.

153 (Separation and Maintenance) [Rev.

2010 [Subsidiary] Form 4 FINal Order ON WIFeS applICatION In the Court of the.

Magistrate at.

In the matter of the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Act Maintenance Cause No.

.

of 19.

.

Complainant against.

Defendant COMPLAINT having been made by .a married woman (hereinafter called the complainant), that.

her husband (hereinafter called the defendant)- Here state the.

ground of the.

application as in.

Form 1.

.

.

It IS thIS day adjudGed that the complaint is true aNd It IS Ordered- That the complainant be no longer bound to cohabit with the defendant.

That the legal custody of the child[ren] of the marriage, namely:- .aged.years .aged.

years .aged.

years .aged.

years while the said child[ren] is [are respectively] under the age of 16 years, be given to the complainant.

That the defendant do from henceforth pay to the complainant personally [for the complainants use to an ofcer of the Court] [to.

on the complainants behalf] the sum of.

monthly [together with a monthly sum of.

for the maintenance of [each] such child until such child[ren] shall [respectively] attain the age of 16 years.

That the defendant do pay to the complainant the sum of ., the costs of the Court and of the complainant incurred in obtaining this order.

That the defendant shall give notice of any change of his address to the Court.

Dated this.

day of .,19.

.

Magistrate.

Subordinate Courts 13 Rev.

2010] (Separation and Maintenance) CAP.

153 [Subsidiary] Form 5 applICatION tO alter, Vary Or dISCharGe Order In the Court of the.

Magistrate at.

In the matter of the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Act Maintenance Cause No.

.

of 19.

.Complainant against .Defendant WHEREAS pursuant to a complaint made by.

of.

(hereinafter called the complainant) an Order was made by this Court that.

of.

.

(hereinafter called the defendant)-.

Here state the.

Order made.

.

.

.

.

Now the complainant [defendant] applies that the said Order be altered [varied] [discharged] by an Order.

.

.

on the ground[s] that.

.

Taken this.

day of ., 19.

.

Complainant [Defendant].

.

Magistrate.

14 Subordinate Courts CAP.

153 (Separation and Maintenance) [Rev.

2010 [Subsidiary] Form 6 SuMMONS ON applICatION tO alter, Vary Or dISCharGe In the Court of the.

Magistrate at.

In the matter of the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Act.

Maintenance Cause No.

of 19.

.Complainant against.

Defendant To:.

.

.

WHEREAS application, a copy whereof is attached hereto, has been made by the complainant [defendant] to alter [vary] [discharge] the Order of this Court made on the .day of ., 19.

AND WHEREAS the.

day of .,19.

at.

in the fore [after] noon has been xed for the hearing of the said application.

YOU ARE HEREBY SUMMONED to appear before this Court at the said date and time to answer the said application.

Dated this.

day of ., 19.

.

Magistrate.

Take notice that the Court will require your personal attendance on the hearing of this summons.

Subordinate Courts 15 Rev.

2010] (Separation and Maintenance) CAP.

153 [Subsidiary] Form 7 Order ON applICatION tO alter, Vary Or dISCharGe In the Court of the.

Magistrate at.

In the matter of the Subordinate Courts (Separation and Maintenance) Act Maintenance Cause No.

.

of 19.

.Complainant against .Defendant APPLICATION HAVING BEEN MADE by the complainant [defendant] to alter [vary] [discharge] the Courts Order made on the.

day of ., 19.

IT IS ORDERED that the said Order be not altered [varied] [discharged].

or IT IS ORDERED that, cause being shown upon fresh evidence to the satisfaction of the Court, the said Order be discharged.

or IT IS ORDERED that, cause being shown upon fresh evidence to the satisfaction of the Court, the said Order be altered [varied] by.

.

.

.

Magistrate.

.

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