Examining the gift deed is key prior to any legal challenge
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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 14th April, 2021 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

I am 76 and in the process of writing my will. At present, I have a residential apartment in my name, along with my wife and elder daughter. As per my will, can I assign this property to my wife and younger daughter (and not my elder daughter)?

Inheritance in absence of will

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 31st March, 2021 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

I got married to a widower with an adopted girl, who is now 25 years old. The property is in the name of my husband, who’d told me that he had explained to the daughter that I would get the property after his death and then to her as she is the only child. The house we stay in is in his name, with the nominee being his daughter. He is not taking initiative to discuss or make both of us secure. Please advise the best course of action. She neither wants to get married nor take up a job.

— Name withheld on request


Continue Reading Inheritance in absence of will creates co-ownership rights over assets

If your aunt wants to bequeath her house to your mother, she will have to execute a will

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 February, 2021 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

My 70-year-old maternal aunt is unmarried and has a house in which she, my mother, younger brother and I have been staying together since 2002. The aunt is my maternal grandfather’s sister’s daughter. My mother has an elder brother too. My aunt inherited the house from her mother. What will be the status of the house when she passes away? Will my mother still have the right to stay in it? My mother and aunt have an “either survivor bank account” and locker, in which they keep their money and valuables. What will happen to that account in case of my aunt’s death?

—Name withheld on request


Continue Reading If your aunt wants to bequeath her house to your mother, she will have to execute a will

It isn’t mandatory to execute gift deed for transferring shares
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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 27th January, 2021 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

I wish to gift shares worth a few lakhs of rupees to my parent, who is retired and has no income, so that the dividend can be used as income. Will I need to make a gift deed and register it? Will my parent be taxed? Can my parent gift or will back the shares to me at a later date?

Seek a probate if will lists an immovable property in Mumbai

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 13th January, 2021 and the online edition of the same can be found here.

My late mother, by way of a will, transferred her residential flat in Mumbai to my late father. The managing committee (MC) wanted my father to probate the will. The deputy registrar (during my late father’s lifetime) gave written orders that since my mother’s will is unchallenged, no probate was required. However, since the MC insisted, we approached the high court (after my dad passed away) where it was mentioned that an undisputed will needs no probate. My late father made a nomination mentioning me, my sister, my wife and two sons. My sister and I, the legal heirs, entered into a family agreement, wherein she released her right to the flat in my favour. Now, the MC is again asking for a probate of the will. What should I do next?

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).
Continue Reading A testator doesn’t have to submit her will to sub-registrar’s office

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?

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

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.
Continue Reading Suspicious Circumstances & Wills