Your legal questions answered by Justice K Chandru, former Judge of the Madras High Court
My questions are as follows:
How many hearings will take place if she is not contesting the case? What will be the court verdict on my petition after a prolonged absence by the respondent?
I and my wife are living separated for about one year due to domestic violence against me (sic).
— Name withheld on request
If the court is satisfied that your spouse is served notice properly and still not appearing and that there is no communication from that side, then there is no bar for the court to set her ex parte and proceed with the hearing. From your letter, I understand that she has a lawyer. In which case, the court can set ex parte at any time. You need not worry about your spouse not giving consent for a mutual divorce. When the matter is posted for recording ex parte evidence, your statement will be recorded and the final order will be passed on the same day.
File civil suit to get encroaching trees removed, claim damages
I have a problem with my neighbour’s coconut trees, leaning and putting pressure on the boundary wall and hanging on top of our outdoor staircase and terrace, posing a threat to life and property. They are causing damage to our parapet wall, airconditioner and with crumbs falling daily, we are even unable to dry our clothes. We have been suffering for the past ten years and have expressed our concerns several times, but our neighbour has not initiated any permanent solution other than chopping dead leaves occasionally. What remedy do I have, and to what extent can I escalate this issue? — Premkumar (via email)You can file a civil suit seeking removal of the encroaching trees and claiming damages for the losses incurred.
DISCLAIMER: The views expressed here are of Justice K Chandru, who is providing guidance and direction based on his rich experience and knowledge of the law. This is not a substitute for legal recourse which must be taken as a follow-up if so recommended in these columns