A testator doesn’t have to submit her will to sub-registrar’s office

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article in the  following Q&A which was published by the Mint Newspaper on 20th October, 2020 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

My mother in 1987 had made a will which was not registered and was in favour of my elder sister, who is not married. My lawyer says that the unregistered will made in 1987 is valid. Please confirm this. Also, my elder sister, who is now 78, wants to make a will in my favour. My lawyer says that the will has to be registered, as currently unregistered wills are not valid. My lawyer states that my sister has to visit the registry office, and it will not be possible for the official to come home to get the signature. Please advise.

—Name withheld on request

We assume that your sister is a Hindu by faith and, hence, certain rules will apply accordingly. Testamentary succession for Hindus is governed under the Indian Succession Act, 1925. A will is very simple to make—all you need to do is put your signature onto a typed (preferred option) will, which would then need to be signed by two witnesses. It is not mandatory to register a will in India (irrespective of whether you are bequeathing immovable or movable properties).
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Land inherited from biological or adopted mother is not considered ancestral property
As a daughter your right to claim a share in your father’s self-acquired property would arise if your father were to die intestate. Image Source: Livemint.com

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article in the  following Q&A which was published by the Mint Newspaper on 7th October, 2020 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

We are two sisters and our father inherited a residential property from his mother through a will. He willed the whole property to my elder sister under pressure. Can my father give the property to one of the two legal heirs, leaving nothing for the other?

A patient enacting a will from hospital must have the doctor as one witness
A close up of a man signing his last will and testament (istockphoto)

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article in the  following Q&A which was published by the Mint Newspaper on 22nd September, 2020 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

One of my uncles is in hospital, getting treatment for covid-19. As his condition is serious, he is planning to make a will. How should he go about making a will that cannot be challenged in the court on the grounds of his mental health?

A daughter has an equal right to that of a son on ancestral property
Photo: iStock

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article in the  following Q&A which was published by the Mint Newspaper on 1st September, 2020 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

My husband has one brother and one sister. Due to some family issues between my mother-in-law and me, we are not in contact since 2013. In 2017, we came to know that my father-in-law has given all his retirement money to my brother-in-law to purchase a flat worth 24 lakh. My in-laws stayed in their ancestor property. Can we get a share in this ancestral property?

Class I heirs of a woman dying intestate are her husband and children
Photo: iStock

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article in the  following Q&A which was published by the Mint Newspaper on 18th August, 2020 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

My father-in-law had a flat. After his death, the house was transferred in my mother-in-law’s name. He didn’t leave any will. After my mother-in-law dies, will the house be divided and given to their three children or can she give it to any one of them?

Photo by Robert Eklund on Unsplash

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article which was published by Moneycontrol.com on 12th August, 2020 and the same can be found here.

The Indian judiciary continues to take progressive steps towards making succession law more women friendly. In the landmark case of Vineeta Sharma v. Rakesh Sharma (Judgment), a 3 judge Bench of the Supreme Court (SC), on August 11th, 2020, held that daughters would have equal coparcenary rights same as that of a son in a Hindu Undivided Family (HUF). The SC clarified two points:

    • Coparcenary rights are acquired by a daughter at birth; and


Continue Reading What is the impact, do wives benefit and other questions about SC ruling giving daughters equal rights over their father’s property answered

The Estate and Succession Planning Consideration That (Almost) No One Discusses

Introduction

The complex nature of estate and succession planning requires careful assessment of myriad considerations, such as the nature of estate (composition and location), family type (nuclear, joint or hybrid), and potential cost outlay (taxation and stamp duty) in order to achieve the objectives in an efficient manner.

However, while determining the costs associated with planning, an oft-overlooked factor is the court fees that may be payable when the components of the succession plan are set into motion post demise. If not evaluated when devising the estate plan, court fees might come as a rude shock to heirs seeking to implement the succession plan of a deceased family member.
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A handwritten will signed by two witnesses is considered valid

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article in the  following Q&A which was published by the Mint Newspaper on 5th August, 2020 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

My father passed away intestate. We are three siblings. My mother and I live in the house owned by my father, and I want this property to be transferred in my mother’s name. My brother and my sister live separately. Is there a way in which the house can be transferred to my mother without any involvement of my brother?

SUSPICIOUS CIRCUMSTANCES & WILLS

The Supreme Court in the case of Kavita Kanwar v. Mrs. Pamela Mehta (“Kavita Kanwar case”), has extensively discussed certain key factors that may render a will surrounded by suspicious circumstances as invalid.

While drafting, a will may bring up feelings of discomfort, it is one of the key elements of estate planning and ensures that the testator’s wishes for distribution of his or her assets is met. Additionally, it brings about a sense of security in the testator in relation to their assets, and when considered, the advantages of drafting a will, outweigh the temporary discomfort caused by the process.
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Wife can manage late husband’s HUF if all coparceners are minors
Photo: istock

The Private Client team at Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas shares their comments and opinions shared in an article in the  following Q&A which was published by the Mint Newspaper on 22nd July, 2020 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

My late husband had mutual fund investments under Hindu Undivided Family (HUF). I have a son and daughter, who are minors. While some mutual funds have agreed that I can be the karta and are willing to let me liquidate investments, but two are saying I can’t be a karta. Can you explain?

—Swati Kesarkar


Continue Reading Wife can manage late husband’s HUF if all coparceners are minors