The Disintegration of Joint Family

by  Adv. Priyanka Sampathy  




3 mins


Disintegration of the joint family


    “Sharing bloodlines doesn’t bond families together, love does.”

Before the dawn of civilization, even our ancestors used to live in tribes & after the dawn of civilisation, the same practice continued for years. Even today, the concept of a joint family is evident. 

What constitutes a joint family?

Joint Family is where the unilinear descent group lives together with their children in the same homestead. It is a form of organization where generations of the same kul live in the same place through the years.

The major factor that constitutes a joint family together is love & sense of belongingness to each other. The advantage of having a joint family is on the higher side than its disadvantages. Some of its advantages are Celebrating Festivals Together, Cooking & Eating together, protecting each other, making children more ground rooted & many more.

On the other hand, its disadvantages are that some people become parasites that they don’t even earn money & try to haugh upon the money of the family, increment in disputes, & trauma to mental health. Now let’s take a dig at what are the factors responsible for the disintegration of joint families nowadays.

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What are the factors responsible for the disintegration of the joint family?

  1. Urbanization- Mass exodus of students & young professionals towards the big cities due to higher studies & jobs has proved a detriment in the disintegration of families. The city lights act as a magnet for them. Even higher educational institutes & after the Liberalisation, Privatisation & Globalisation Policy, MNCs have entered the Indian market bringing lots of opportunities for the nationals. This has enhanced the living standards but, at the same time, distant the people from their near & dear ones. 
  2. Western Culture- After the British left India, the western culture is still persistent & even growing day by day in India. Western cultures have always promoted the concept of nuclear families & the Indians are on the same tangent for years.
  3. Education-   Education is making people sophisticated, but at the same time, they lack basic humanity & an emphatic attitude towards each other. Nowadays people have very less time for their friends & family this is the main reason why the sense of belongingness is diminishing day by day. 
  4. Independence- Indian society was considered a Patriarchal Society for ages, but the trend is now fading because women are also considered as truly capable as men. Women are in the judiciary, army, navy, pilots, engineers, astronauts & whatnot. But as every coin has two sides, so the situation is that due to this factor, women have developed an attitude of independency, which is not bad, but it somehow leads to the disintegration of the families. Nowadays, they don’t want to live in clusters but prefer nuclear families. 
  5. Population- India is the second largest country in terms of population after China, so controlling the population has been an agenda of the government for ages. Therefore, controlling overpopulation is also a reason for the disintegration of joint families.
  6. Property Disputes- Everyone has become so self-centric that they want to have the properties over the dead bodies of the people. In western culture, the hunger of people for property is increasing day by day. Hindu Joint Families are disintegrating since everyone wants to have their share because they can’t survive under the same roof.

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Comparison Chart in the behaviour of humans in the Present & Ancient Era that leads to the disintegration of the families

Partition as per Hindu Law 

Partition, under the Hindu Succession Act 1956, is governed by two schools-

  1. The Mitakshra School is derived from the name of the commentary written by Vijnaneswara on the Yajnavalkya Smriti. In parts of India except for Assam & Bengal, Mitakshra school is applicable. 
  2. The Dayabhaga school derived from the text written by Jimutavahana

Therefore, Partition, according to the Mitakshra School, means severance of interest & division of the property in accordance with shares by metes & bounds. The subject-matter of Partition is always the joint family property. Individual self acquired property is never the subject-matter of Partition. 

Partition is also a type of disintegration of the joint family because it is the severance of the status of the coparceners from the joint family property. 

There are various modes of Partition available in India. It can be by will, notice, agreement, court, father, conversion to any other religion & arbitration. Feel free to reach out to our Family Experts for taking Family Legal Advice

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It can be stated that the disintegration of joint family is at its peak due to industrialization & civilization. As every coin has two sides, so does society. Some admire disintegration, while others consider it a ban on society.

Love is that thread that can bind individuals for years, but if there is a shole or if any of its strings draws, it becomes difficult for the people to survive through it. This is the same case with joint families until & unless you are attached to each other with the thread of love, it is good, but as soon as it breaks, it becomes a nightmare for the people. Therefore, it is essential to keep settling all disputes.

Always take lawyers’ advice if you think you are stuck somewhere because it is always to take precautions, as a precaution is always better than a cure. 

Always seek lawyers advice to settle all the disputes related to property in the joint family.

Adv. Priyanka Sampathy

Adv. Priyanka Sampathy


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Priyanka Sampathy is a legal consultant who prioritises ethical and professional conduct while striving to achieve desired outcomes. With over 15 years of independent practice, she has significant expertise in handling legal cases. Her exceptional communication skills enable her to express arguments in a clear and persuasive manner, both in writing and verbally, in Hindi, English, and Telugu.

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