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Maintenance Orders (Facilities For Enforcement) Act
Ord. 20/1921; Acts 25/1956 (s. 9), 9/1959, 43/1962 (s. 2), 29/1971, 68/1971, 19/1980 (s. 6), 18/1989 (s. 7), 14/1995; R.G.N. 217/1970.
ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS
- Short title.
- Enforcement of maintenance orders made in reciprocating countries.
- Transmission to reciprocating country of maintenance orders made in Zimbabwe.
- Power to make provisional orders of maintenance against persons resident in reciprocating country.
- Powers of courts to confirm maintenance orders made in reciprocating country.
- Proof of documents signed by officers of court.
- Depositions to be evidence.
- Application of this Act to reciprocating countries.
AN ACT to facilitate the enforcement in Zimbabwe of maintenance orders made in England and Northern Ireland and elsewhere within the Commonwealth and in other States on the basis of reciprocal arrangements.
[Date of commencement: 22nd July, 1921.]
1 Short title
This Act may be cited as the Maintenance Orders (Facilities for Enforcement) Act [Chapter 5:10].
In this Act—
“appropriate authority”, in relation to a reciprocating country, means an authority of that country recognized by the Minister for the purposes of this Act;
“certified copy”, in relation to an order of a court, means a copy of the order certified by the proper officer of the court to be a true copy;
“dependants” means such persons as a person against whom a maintenance order has been made is, according to the law in force where such order was made, liable to maintain;
“maintenance court” means a maintenance court referred to in section 3 of the Maintenance Act [Chapter 5:09] or a juvenile court;
“maintenance order” means an order for the payment of money, whether in a lump sum or in periodical payments or otherwise, towards the maintenance of the wife or other dependants of the person against whom the order is made;
“Minister” means the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs or any other Minister to whom the President may, from time to time, assign the administration of this Act;
“prescribed” means prescribed by rules of court or by rules made under section seven;
“reciprocating country” means— (a) England and Northern Ireland;
(b) any territory within the Commonwealth, including Scotland, or any other State to which this Act has been applied in terms of section ten.
3 Enforcement of maintenance orders made in reciprocating countries
- Where a maintenance order has been made against any person by any court in a reciprocating country and a certified copy of the order has been transmitted by the appropriate authority to the Minister, the Minister shall send a
copy of the order to the clerk of the maintenance court of the province or district where the person against whom the order was made is residing.
- Upon receipt of an order in terms of subsection (1) the clerk of the maintenance court concerned shall register the order and, upon registration, subsections (5) and (7) of section 6 and sections 7, 8, 9, 10, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 and 27 of the Maintenance Act [Chapter 5:09] shall apply, mutatis mutandis, in relation to such order as if it were an order made in terms of section 6 of that Act:
Provided that, if in respect of any maintenance order it is proved to the court that the marriage between the parties has been dissolved subsequent to the making of the order, the maintenance court may direct that the order shall not apply in respect of any payment falling due subsequent to the date of dissolution of the marriage.
- Where upon an application to vary or discharge an order registered in terms of subsection (2) the court at which it is registered is satisfied that it is necessary to refer the application to the court which originally made the order, the first-mentioned court may so refer the application and adjourn the proceedings for the purpose.
4 Transmission to reciprocating country of maintenance orders made in Zimbabwe
Where a court in Zimbabwe has made a maintenance order against any person and it is proved to the court that the person against whom the order was made is resident in a reciprocating country, the court shall send to the Minister a certified copy of the order so that it may be transmitted to the appropriate authority.
5 Power to make provisional orders of maintenance against persons resident in reciprocating country
- Where an application is made to a maintenance court in Zimbabwe for a maintenance order against any person, and it is proved that that person is resident in a reciprocating country, the court may, in the absence of that person, if after hearing the evidence it is satisfied of the justice of the application, make any such order as it might have made if a summons had been duly served on that person and he had failed to appear at the hearing, but in such case the order shall be provisional only, and shall have no effect unless and until confirmed by a competent court in that reciprocating country.
- The evidence of any witness who is examined on any application in terms of subsection (1) shall be put into writing, and such deposition shall be read over to and signed by him.
- Where an order is made in terms of subsection (1) the court shall send to the Minister, for transmission to the appropriate authority, the depositions so taken and a certified copy of the order, together with a statement of the grounds on which the making of the order might have been opposed if the person against whom the order is made had been duly served with a summons and had appeared at the hearing, and such information as the court possesses for facilitating the identification of that person and ascertaining his whereabouts.
- Where any provisional order in terms of subsection (1) has come before a court in a reciprocating country for confirmation, and the order has by that court been remitted to such court which made the order for the purpose of taking further evidence, the latter court shall, after giving the prescribed notice, proceed to take the evidence in like manner and subject to the like conditions as the evidence in support of the original application.
- If upon the hearing of evidence in terms of subsection (4) it appears to the court that the order ought not to have been made, the court may rescind the order, but in any other case the depositions shall be sent to the Minister and dealt with in like manner as the original depositions.
- The confirmation of an order made under this section shall not affect any power of a court to vary or rescind that order:
- on the making of a varying or rescinding order, the court shall send a certified copy thereof to the Minister for transmission to the appropriate authority; and
- in the case of any order varying the original order, the order shall not have any effect unless and until confirmed in like manner as the original order.
(7) The applicant shall have the same right of appeal, if any, against a refusal to make a provisional order as he would have had against a refusal to make the order had a summons been duly served on the person against whom the order is sought to be made.
6 Powers of courts to confirm maintenance orders made in reciprocating country