MAINTENANCE, quasi contracts. The support which one person, who is bound by law to do so, gives to another for his living; for example, a father is bound to find maintenance for his children; and a child is required by law to main-tain his father or mother when they cannot support themselves, and he has ability to maintain them. 1 Bouv. Inst. n. 284-6.
MAINTENANCE, crimes. A malicious, or at least, officious interference in a suit in which the offender has no interest, to assist one of the parties to it against the other, with money or advice to prosecute or defend the action, without any authority of law. 1 Russ. Cr. 176.
2. But there are many acts in the nature of maintenance, which become justifiable from the circumstances under which they are done. They may be justi-fied, 1. Because the party has an interest in the thing in variance; as when he has a bare contingency in the lands in question, which possibly may never come in esse. Bac. Ab. h. t. 2. Because the party is of kindred or affinity, as father, son, or heir apparent, or husband or wife. 3. Because the relation of landlord and tenant or master and servant subsists between the party to the suit and the person who assists him. 4. Because the money is given out of charity. 1 Bailey, S. C. Rep. 401. 5. Because the person assisting the party to the suit is an attorney or counsellor: the assistance to be rendered must, however, be strictly professional, for a lawyer is not more justified in giving his client money than another man. 1 Russ. Cr. 179. Bac. Ab Mainte-nance: Bro. Maintenance. This offence is punishable by fine and imprisonment. 4 Black Com. 124; 2 Swift's Dig. 328; Bac. Ab. h. t. Vide 3 Hawks, 86; 1 Greenl. 292; 11 Mass. 553 , 6 Mass. 421; 5 Pick. 359; 5 Monr. 413; 6 Cowen, 431; 4 Wend. 806; 14 John. R. 124; 3 Cowen, 647; 3 John. Ch. R. 508 7 D. & R. 846; 5 B. & C. 188.