LAWS OF MALAYSIA
REPRINT
Act 356
MARRIED WOMEN AND
CHILDREN (ENFORCEMENT OF
MAINTENANCE) ACT 1968
Incorporating all amendments up to 1 January 2006
PUBLISHED BY
THE COMMISSIONER OF LAW REVISION, MALAYSIA
UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF THE REVISION OF LAWS ACT 1968
IN COLLABORATION WITH
PERCETAKAN NASIONAL MALAYSIA BHD
2006
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ACT 356
MARRIED WOMEN AND CHILDREN
(ENFORCEMENT OF MAINTENANCE)
ACT 1968
First enacted ...
...
...
...
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... 1968 (Act No. 8 of
1968)
Revised
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...
...
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... 1988 (Act 356 w.e.f.
1 December 1988)
PREVIOUS REPRINT
First Reprint
... ... ... ... ...
2001
Married Women and Children
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(Enforcement of Maintenance)
LAWS OF MALAYSIA
Act 356
MARRIED WOMEN AND CHILDREN
(ENFORCEMENT OF MAINTENANCE)
ACT 1968
ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS
Section
1.
Citation
2.
Application
3.
Interpretation
4.
Power of court to make an attachment of earnings order
5.
Nature of attachment of earnings order
6.
Effect of attachment of earnings order
7.
Duty of defendant and employer to comply with attachment of earnings
order
8.
Additional powers of court in attachment of earnings order proceedings
9.
Power of court to determine what are earnings
10.
Payment of money under attachment of earnings order
11.
Where earnings paid by Government or out of Consolidated Fund
12.
Penalties for non-compliance with attachment of earnings order and
for giving false notice or statement
13.
Order to make payment to court
14.
Application to States
15.
Modification
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Married Women and Children
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(Enforcement of Maintenance)
LAWS OF MALAYSIA
Act 356
MARRIED WOMEN AND CHILDREN
(ENFORCEMENT OF MAINTENANCE)
ACT 1968
An Act to provide for the enforcement of maintenance orders.
[21 March 1968]
BE IT ENACTED by the Seri Paduka Baginda Yang di-Pertuan
Agong with the advice and consent of the Dewan Negara and
Dewan Rakyat in Parliament assembled, and by the authority of
the same, as follows:
Citation
1.  This Act may be cited as the Married Women and Children
(Enforcement of Maintenance) Act 1968.
Application
This Act shall apply to the States of Peninsular Malaysia only.
2.
Interpretation
In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires--
3.
"attachment of earnings order" means an order made under
section 4;
"the court" means the court competent to make a maintenance
order;
"defendant", in relation to a maintenance order or a related
attachment of earnings order, means the person liable to make
payments under the maintenance order;
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"earnings", in relation to a defendant, means any sums payable
to him--
(a) by way of wages or salary, including any fees, bonus,
commission, overtime pay or other emoluments payable in
addition to wages or salary by the person paying the wages
or salary or payable under a contract of service;
(b) by way of pension, including gratuity and an annuity in
respect of past services, whether or not the services were
rendered to the person paying the annuity, and including
periodical payments by way of compensation for the loss,
a b o l i t i o n or relinquishment, or any diminution in the
emoluments, of any office or employment;
"employer" means a person by whom, as a principal and not as
a servant or agent, earnings fall to be paid to a defendant, and
references to payment of earnings shall be construed accordingly;
"maintenance order" means--
(a) an order made under section 3 of the Married Women and
Children (Maintenance) Act 1950 [Act 263];
(b) an order for the payment of periodical sums by way of
maintenance or alimony to a wife or for the benefit of
any child under the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce)
Act 1976 [Act 164];
(c) a maintenance order confirmed by the court under the
Maintenance Orders (Facilities for Enforcement) Act 1949
[Act 34]; and
(d) where this Act are made applicable by virtue of an
authorization under section 14 to or in respect of a
maintenance order made by a Syariah Court shall include
such order.
Power of court to make an attachment of earnings order
4. (1) Notwithstanding any written law to the contrary, the court
may, upon application by the person for whose maintenance the
order is made or the guardian of such person, make an attachment
of earnings order, if the court considers it just so to make.
(2) An application for an attachment of earnings order may be
made in the proceedings in which a maintenance order is applied
for or in any subsequent proceedings.
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Nature of attachment of earnings order
5. (1) An attachment of earnings order shall require the person
to whom the order in question is directed, being a person appearing
to the court to be the defendant's employer, to make out of the
earnings falling to be paid to the defendant payments in satisfaction
of the order.
(2) The amount to be prescribed in an attachment of earnings
order shall be such sum as to the court shall seem reasonable after
taking into account the resources and needs of the defendant and
the needs of persons for whom he must or reasonably should
provide.
(3) An attachment of earnings order shall contain, so far as they
are known to the court making the order, such particulars as may
be prescribed for the purpose of enabling the defendant to be
identified by the person to whom the order is directed.
(4) An attachment of earnings order or any variation thereof
shall not come into force until the expiration of seven days from
the date when a copy of the order is served on the person to whom
the order is directed.
(5) An attachment of earnings order shall designate the officer
to whom the payments under the order are to be made.
Effect of attachment of earnings order
6. (1) When an attachment of earnings order is made, all other
proceedings for the enforcement of the related maintenance order
begun before the making of the attachment of earnings order shall
be suspended.
(2) The court by which an attachment of earnings order has
been made may, if it thinks fit, on the application of the defendant
or a person entitled to receive payments under the related maintenance
order, make an order discharging or varying the attachment of
earnings order.
(3) An attachment of earnings order shall cease to have effect--
(a) upon the issue of a warrant directing that the amount due
under the related maintenance order shall be levied in the
manner provided by law for levying fines;
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(b) upon the making of an order sentencing the defendant to
imprisonment for failure to comply with the related
maintenance order; and
(c) upon the rescission of the related maintenance order,
and where an attachment of earnings order ceases to have effect
as aforesaid the court making such order shall give notice of the
cessation to the person to whom the order was directed.
Duty of defendant and employer to comply with attachment of
earnings order
7. (1) A person to whom an attachment of earnings order is directed
shall, notwithstanding anything in any other written law but subject
to this Act, comply with the order or, if the order is subsequently
varied under section 6, with the order as so varied.
(2) Where on any occasion on which earnings fall to be paid
to a defendant there are in force two or more attachment of earnings
orders relating to those earnings, then, for the purpose of complying
with this Act the employer shall--
(a) deal with those orders according to the respective dates
on which they came into force disregarding any later
order until all earlier orders have been dealt with; and
(b) deal with any later order as if the earnings to which it
relates were the residue of the defendant's earnings after
the making of any payment under this Act in pursuance
of any earlier order.
(3) An employer who, in pursuance of an attachment of earnings
order, makes a payment under this Act shall give to the defendant
a statement in writing specifying the amount of that payment.
(4) Where the person to whom an attachment of earnings order
is directed has, during the period of one month immediately preceding
the day on which the order is served on him, on no occasion been
the defendant's employer, he shall forthwith give notice in writing
to that effect in the prescribed form to the court.
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Additional powers of court in attachment of earnings order
proceedings
8. (1) Where proceedings relating to an attachment of earnings
order are brought in any court, the court may, either before or at
the hearing--
(a) order the defendant to give to the court, within such
period as may be specified by the order, a statement
signed by him of--
(i) the name and address of his employer, or of each
of his employers if he has more than one;
(ii) such particulars as to the defendant's earnings as
may be so specified;
(iii) such prescribed particulars as may be so specified
for the purpose of enabling the defendant to be
identified by an employer of his; and
(b) order any person appearing to the court to be an employer
of the defendant to give to the court, within such period
as may be specified by the order, a statement signed by
him or on his behalf of such particulars as may be specified
by the order, of all earnings of the defendant which fell
to be paid by that person during such period as may be
so specified.
(2) A document purporting to be such a statement as is mentioned
in subsection (1) shall, in any such proceedings as are so mentioned,
be received in evidence and be deemed to be such a statement
without further proof unless the contrary is shown.
Power of court to determine what are earnings
9. (1) The court by which an attachment of earnings order has
been made shall, on the application of the person to whom the
order is directed or of the defendant or of the person in whose
favour the order was made, determine whether payments to the
defendant of a particular class or description specified by the
application are earnings for the purposes of that order; and the
person to whom the order is directed shall be entitled to give effect
to any determination for the time being in force under this subsection.
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(2) A person to whom an attachment of earnings order is directed
who makes an application under subsection (1) shall not incur any
liability for failing to comply with the order as regards any payments
of the class or description specified by the application which are
made by him to the defendant while the application, or any appeal
in consequence thereof, is pending:
Provided that this subsection shall not apply to such payments
if the said person subsequently withdraws the application or, as the
case may be, abandons the appeal.
Payment of money under attachment of earnings order
10. (1) The court to whom an employer pays any sum in pursuance
of an attachment of earnings order shall pay that sum to such
person entitled to receive payments under the related maintenance
order as is specified by the attachment of earnings order.
(2) Any sums received by virtue of an attachment of earnings
order by the court shall be deemed to be payments made by the
defendant, so as to discharge first any sums for the time being due
and unpaid under the related maintenance order (a sum due at an
earlier date being discharged before a sum due at a later date) and
secondly any costs incurred in proceedings relating to the maintenance
order which were payable by the defendant when the attachment
of earnings order was made or last varied.
Where earnings paid by Government or out of Consolidated
Fund
11. (1) In relation to earnings falling to be paid by the Government
or out of the Consolidated Fund the earnings shall be treated as
falling to be paid by the chief officer for the time being of the
department, office or other body concerned.
(2) If any question arises, in connection with any proceedings
relating to an attachment of earnings order, as to what department,
office or other body is concerned for the purposes of this section,
or as to who for those purposes is the chief officer thereof, that
question shall be referred to and determined by the Minister of
Finance but the Minister of Finance shall not be under any obligation
to consider a reference under this subsection unless it is made by
a court.
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(Enforcement of Maintenance)
(3) A document purporting to set out a determination of the
Minister of Finance under subsection (2) and to be signed by an
official of the Ministry of Finance shall, in any such proceedings
as are mentioned in that subsection, be admissible in evidence and
deemed to contain an accurate statement of such a determination
unless the contrary is shown.
Penalties for non-compliance with attachment of earnings order
and for giving false notice or statement
12. (1) Any person who--
(a) fails to comply with subsection 7(1) or (4) or an order
of a court under subsection 8(1); or
(b) gives such a notice as is mentioned in subsection 7(4) or
a statement in pursuance of an order of a court under
subsection 8(1), which notice or statement he knows to
be false in a material particular; or
(c) recklessly gives such a notice or statement which is false
in a material particular,
shall, subject to subsection (2) be liable on conviction to imprisonment
for a term not exceeding one year or to a fine not exceeding one
thousand ringgit or to both.
(2) It shall be a defence for a person charged with failing to
comply with subsection 7(1) to prove that he took all reasonable
steps to comply with the attachment of earnings order to which the
failure relates.
Order to make payment to court
13. (1) Where a defendant is a person whose income is derived
from sources other than earnings, the court may on the application
of the person for whose maintenance the maintenance order is
made or on the application of the guardian of such person, make
an order that any sum of money payable under the maintenance
order be paid direct to the court on such day as the court may fix;
and upon receipt of the payment of such sum the court will then
pay the said sum to the person for whose maintenance the maintenance
order is made or to the guardian of such person.
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(2) If the defendant neglects or fails to comply with any order
made by the court under subsection (1), the court making the order
may call upon the defendant to show cause why he has neglected
or failed to comply with the said order.
(3) If sufficient cause is not shown and the sum of money
payable and due under the maintenance order is not paid, the court
may proceed to recover the same by issuing a warrant for the
attachment and the sale of the property belonging to the defendant.
(4) Except for a warrant of attachment issued by the High Court,
a warrant for the attachment and the sale of the property belonging
to a defendant under subsection (3) may be executed anywhere
within Peninsular Malaysia, but if it is required to be executed
outside the State in which it is issued, it shall be endorsed by a
Magistrate of the First Class having jurisdiction in the State in
which it is to be executed.
(5) If the sum of money so payable and due be not paid and
cannot be recovered by such attachment and sale, the court may
direct that the defendant shall suffer imprisonment for a term not
exceeding one month for every such neglect or failure to comply
with the order of the court made under subsection (1):
Provided that--
(a) such imprisonment shall terminate whenever the amount
so due and payable has been paid or recovered by the
process of law;
(b) notwithstanding any written law to the contrary the person
for whose maintenance the maintenance order is made or
the guardian of such person shall not be required to pay
or to contribute towards the upkeep or maintenance of
the defendant in prison, if he has been directed to be
imprisoned under this subsection; and
(c) notwithstanding imprisonment under this subsection the
defendant shall not be absolved from the obligation to
pay the said sum of money so due and payable in respect
of which he has neglected or failed to make payment.
Application to States
14.  It is hereby declared that in pursuance of Clause (1) of Article
76A of the Federal Constitution, the State legislatures in Peninsular
Malaysia or any of them are hereby authorized to make laws
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(Enforcement of Maintenance)
providing that this Act shall apply to or in respect of a maintenance
order made by the Syariah Courts constituted by or under the
enactments of the States.
Modification
15.  Where one of the State legislatures of Peninsular Malaysia
in pursuance of the authorization under section 14 by an Enactment
applies this Act to or in respect of maintenance orders made by
the Syariah Courts constituted under its Enactment, the provisions
of this Act shall have effect with respect thereto subject to the
following modifications, namely:
(a) the expression "court" shall include a Syariah Court
constituted by or under the Enactment of that State;
(b) the expression "maintenance order" shall include a
maintenance order made by the aforesaid Syariah Court;
and
(c) any order made or any warrant or any process issued by
the aforesaid Syariah Court under this Act shall be as
valid and effectual as if the same is made or issued by
a Magistrate of the First Class in that State and may be
executed within that State, but if it is required to be
executed outside that State it shall be endorsed by a
Magistrate of the First Class having jurisdiction in the
State in which it is to be executed.
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LAWS OF MALAYSIA
Act 356
MARRIED WOMEN AND CHILDREN
(ENFORCEMENT OF MAINTENANCE)
ACT 1968
LIST OF AMENDMENTS
Amending law
Short title
In force from
Act 160
Malaysian Currency (Ringgit) Act
29-08-1975
1975
Act A996
Interpretation (Amendment) Act 1997
24-07-1997
Married Women and Children
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(Enforcement of Maintenance)
LAWS OF MALAYSIA
Act 356
MARRIED WOMEN AND CHILDREN
(ENFORCEMENT OF MAINTENANCE)
ACT 1968
LIST OF SECTIONS AMENDED
Section
Amending authority
In force from
2
Act A996
24-07-1997
12
Act 160
29-08-1975
13
Act A996
24-07-1997
14
Act A996
24-07-1997
DICETAK OLEH
PERCETAKAN NASIONAL MALAYSIA BERHAD,
KUALA LUMPUR
BAGI PIHAK DAN DENGAN PERINTAH KERAJAAN MALAYSIA