When a couple gets divorced, one party is often in a better financial position than the other. The person who has custody of the children will also have expenses that the other parent does not have. For this reason the court will issue a maintenance order requiring maintenance to be paid for the children and, depending on the circumstances, to the other party.
Maintenance for the children
Maintenance for the children is paid to the parent who has custody (but it is important to remember that this is the child's right and not the parent's). All parents have a duty to support their children, including children who are illegitimate. If there are problems with maintenance after the divorce has gone through, these can be taken to the Maintenance officer at the Magistrates Court.
Whether one party will have to pay maintenance or support to the other party depends on the circumstances. If the parties cannot agree on how much should be paid then the court will decide.
Because Hindu or Muslim marriages are not fully recognised as legal marriages, the wife has no legal status to claim support after divorce - unless the parties have also entered into a civil union.