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Succession Certificate in India

Documents required

  1. Death certificate copy
  2. List and ID copies of all Beneficiaries or their POA holders and 2 witnesses
  3. POA copies
  4. List and proof of assets
  5. Will copy

 

Step 1: Heir(s) or their POA holder to approach the court with jurisdiction (scroll to bottom to see how jurisdiction is determined) with originals and copies of above documents, along with 2 witnesses for typing of the application and presentation before the judge for verification. The court will issue a succession certificate in 30 days

 

In the absence of a Will the court will require the deceased's death and ongoing succession procedure to be advertised in 2 leading newspapers and court notice boards. After the stipulated time the court will determine the family members entitled to shares in the assets and the proportion of such shares. The religion and marital status of the deceased at the time of death will influence this outcome. It is possible that unintended family members are named as beneficiaries on the list. In order to regain his / her full share the surviving spouse must then obtain from each of the listed family members a 'No Claim Certificate' or POA. This can pose problems especially if such family members are far away, incommunicado or in some cases hostile

 

If any debts of the deceased are brought to the attention of the court as per section 325 of the Indian Succession act 1925, the court will ensure that such debts are recorded on the Succession certificate.

 

Succession certificate in the absence of a Will could take 3 to 6 months. Court fees are around 3% or 30,000 Rs whichever is lower

 

Step 2: With the Succession Certificate and No Claim Certificate(s) the primary beneficiary may then approach relevant Bank, AMC, Depository, Insurance Mortgage company etc. to recover assets. There may be additional documents such as affidavits and indemnities from institution to institution

 

 

 

 

 

Sucession cert dxb

 

, may grant a certificate under this Part.On behalf of the heir(s) we approach the court with case documents, with 2 witnesses for typing of the application and presentation before the judge for verification. The court will issue a succession certificate in 7 days. The witnesses should know the family for more than 2 years.

 

In the absence of a Will the succession certificate will be drawn up based on Shariah principles. Family members as determined by shariah could be listed as beneficiaries, drastically reducing the spouses share in some cases to just 1/8th. In order to regain his / her full share the spouse must then obtain from each of the listed family members a 'No Claim Certificate'. This can pose problems especially if such family members are far away, incommunicado or in some cases hostile

 

Step 2: Procuring probate, execution or distribution orders. After the succession certificate or legal heir certificate is obtained, an Inheritance file is opened in court. The Court will issue letters to various Government Bodies such as Etisalat, Dewa, Economic and Banks requesting them to notify the court of any debts or liabilities of the deceased. The court will ensure that all debts of the deceased are settled before issuing letters to the Bank, Mortgage company etc. instructing them to transfer the balance monies to the beneficiaries listed on the succession certificate

 

A separate letter will be issued addressed to the Dubai Land Department to transfer the property title(s) of the deceased to the beneficiaries listed on the succession certificate. See sample procedure from Emaar

 

A separate letter will be issued addressed to the RTA to transfer the title of vehicles owned by the deceased to the beneficiaries listed on the succession certificate.

 

The time taken depends on 1. Assets in question 2. Emirate and Government Bodies in question 3. Land department and banks in question 4. If there are minors. Process may take 3 months to a couple of years in the absence of a Will. Rules subject to change at any time, furthermore additional documentation may be requested and procedure changed at the Court’s discretion

 

 

 

 

Determining Court Jurisdiction

Section 371 in The Indian Succession Act, 1925 Court having jurisdiction to grant certificate. The District Judge within whose jurisdiction the deceased ordinarily resided at the time of his death, or, if at that time he had no fixed place of residence, the District Judge, within whose jurisdiction any part of the property of the deceased may be found, may grant a certificate under this Part.

 

 

 

Nominee - Understanding the Concept and Risk

It is now mandatory to register a nominee for singly held accounts or property in India. Most people think that specifying a nominee is the only step required to ensure smooth transmission of their assets upon their death, However, most do not understand that a Nominee is NOT automatically the Legal Heir. 

 

For example on the death of a account holder the institution will often pay out the assets to the nominee. Several months later the institution may receive a claim from the true legal heirs as determined by the Will of the deceased. The Institution can dismiss their claim, having already paid the nominee. The true legal heirs are then obliged to pursue the nominee through the courts to claim their rights back from the nominee

 

A nominee is therefore not a substitute for a Will

 

 

Should I have a Joint a/c?

There are several types of accounts. It is important to understand how each works and the associated risks before you choose the right one for you.

 

  1. Single holder account: You hold an account as sole beneficiary. In the event of your death the proceeds will be paid to your nominee (who may not be your legal heir) 
  2. Either or Survivor account You hold this account with another person. Either of you will have the right to operate the account. Should one of you die the other will have the right to continue operating or withdraw all the money and close the account
  3. Joint account You hold this account jointly with another person. Either of you may be able to deposit money into this account but to withdraw both of you must sign jointly. Should one of you die the other will not be able to continue operating and will not be able to liquidate and close the account. The surviving account holder will need to procure a Succession certificate for the deceased. In the absence of a Will it will be expensive and time consuming to obtain a succession certificate. However once a succession certificate is obtained the Legal heirs are registered as account holders in place of the deceased after which the account can be liquidated and proceeds paid out in the correct proportion

 

 

Deca Office 3-3-245/2 next to Bejai church complex, Bejai, Mangalore, 575004 India 

 

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