As a law firm specializing in family and guardianship law, we would like to offer our opinion on the importance of Section 7 of the Guardians and Wards Act, 1890 (India) for Non Resident Indians (NRI). This provision states that a guardian shall be appointed for a minor’s property if the value exceeds Rs.10,000 in some States or Rs.25,000 in others.
Section 7 of the Guardians and Wards Act is critical because it safeguards minors’ financial interests by ensuring that their assets are appropriately managed by a legally-appointed guardian. The appointment of guardianship is necessary when parents or legal guardians experiencing mental health issues cannot cater to minors’ long-term needs.
Furthermore, Section 7 also imposes restrictions on any person seeking to handle minor’s property without proper authorization from competent authorities such as courts within India.
The relevance of this section extends not only to Indian residents but also NRIs who are living abroad considering they have valuable assets based in India registered under their name even after being non-residentized. They may not always be available physically to manage these properties since they may reside abroad permanently or temporarily.
Now let us discuss some relevant case laws regarding NRIs and management of minors’ property:
1) In Swapnali Sankar Debnath v State Of West Bengal & Others (2016), Calcutta High Court declared that an NRI father could apply for temporary custody over his minor child residing with his grandparents in India while imposing appropriate terms/conditions related particularly to finance.
2) Additionally, Union Bank Of India v Anita Vyas (2009), cited by several other judgments across different jurisdictions establishes how no person can transact underlying funds except through judicially approved correspondent bank.
3) Similarly, KN Bhandari vs Jaya Raj Bhandari & Ors,(2018)- Delhi High court held notice issued U/s 17A HMA (which provides for a court to order appointment of OPG) can be served on an NRI respondent through central authority under the Hague Convention, though it may take some time.
4) In Rajan Gupta v. Union of India & Ors (2016), Delhi High Court directed competent authorities to ensure that all necessary steps are taken in order to safeguard the minor’s interests and ensuring a proper report is filed indicating how the concerned property shall be managed by guardianship appointed by competent authorities.
These cases indicate how Section 7 plays a fundamental role in protecting minors’ financial interests regardless of their legal guardian’s status or location. NRIs who have properties/assets registered under their names in India need to understand that they are obligated to abide by these provisions since violation could resultstern measures such as fines, litigation or police action may follow against them.
In conclusion, from both ethical and legal perspectives, it is essential for NRIs possessing valuable assets based in India registered under their name to comply with Section 7 when appointing guardianships over minors’ property. Ensuring adequate protection for minors’ welfare should not be underestimated given there potential vulnerable situation without appropriate guidance and care being provided; Section 7 aims at mitigating that risk.