The standard thing that needs to be done when husbands get summons from court in maintenance/DV case is to file objections. Ok, some people may say that the judge will send the case to mediation first, but the useless drama that goes by mediation is the subject of another post later. So here I provide very simple way how to write the objections for each statement in wife’s petition. It is always advised to write your own and send it to advocate for taking print and filing in court. Because even though wives are allowed to tell lies and rampant contradictions, higher standards may get applied to statements made by respondent husbands.
The standard way is like this:
Wife’s petition says:
In the XYZ court between
Maharani DV-498A Petitioner
1. I got married on XYZ date in ABC place etc.
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2. I was not given food
3. I was beaten up
4. Husband is impotent
5. I was sexually abused
6. blah blah blah
In the end, her petition says: “I should be given 50,000 p.m maintenance, legal costs, blah blah blah…”
So your objection /written statement should be like this:
1. Admitted the fact of marriage of petitioner and respondent on XYZ date in ABC place. (if the fact of marriage and date/place are true)
2. Petitioner’s allegation that “I was not given food” is denied and she is put to strict proof of the same. Or maybe better to use third person format like: Petitioner’s allegation that she was not given food is denied and she is put to strict proof of the same.
3. Petitioner’s allegation that she was beaten up is denied and she is put to strict proof of the same.
Similarly take each para/point in petition and if something is true, you can accept that and whatever is false you can deny in same format as above.
You can also add up some of your own points, story, or allegations if you will. Later on the same can become part of your evidence/affidavit. This is because if wife makes even false allegations but we don’t even state the actual domestic violence at hands of wife what happened; then a presumption may arise in mind of judges that the one who makes allegations might have at least 20% truth in those allegations, but the one who simply denies but has no counter-allegations to make might be the culprit. Don’t ask me the logic behind this, family courts are not run based on much logic anyway. It’s a psychological game so one shouldn’t be seen to be coming under any pressure. Or to take a logical perspective of human psychology behind it: Trying only to defend may not be the right defence. Many lawyers will suggest in beginning to focus only on denial and defending (to steer towards C-word basically), but I tend to disagree because if the cases actually go to evidence and full trial, not having made any allegations in the objection statement may create a disconnect and a disadvantage.
In the end, state that “for the reasons mentioned above, petitioner’s petition should be dismissed with exemplary costs, in the interest of justice and equity”.
During the objections, one need not give any evidence. But I would not be very strict about ”don’t disclose any evidence till trial” policy advocated by many. It’s not a purely legal game, it’s also a psychological game, so if one can create some fear in opponent’s minds at the very beginning of the cases by disclosing some tactical evidence; they may feel the same fear and uncertainty that they want you to feel about what’s going to happen next. This can be suitably followed up to make them agree to a zero or token alimony divorce. Else they may think that you are scared OR you want to beg and bring wife back, which never works in practice anyway as explained in the main Advice to men post.