Home > Money > Personal Finance > Adopted child is class-1 heir and has equal rights in father’s property
Photo: iStock
Photo: iStock

Adopted child is class-1 heir and has equal rights in father’s property

  • Father’s properties will devolve equally among all class-I heirs under the Hindu Succession Act, 1956
  • An absolute owner of a share in property, one can absolutely and without any fetters deal with his share in the property in the manner he deems fit

My father died without making any Will. I have a legally adopted sister. However, my mother wants to transfer everything to me. I want to know if my sister has any property right? If yes, will she have an equal right in all the properties? Can my mother alone decide how the property will be divided? Please advise.

—Rohan Agarwal

It is assumed that at the time of your father’s demise, he was a Hindu and Hindu laws were applicable to him and, therefore, his property will be distributed among his heirs as per the Hindu Succession Act, 1956. We have further assumed that during the lifetime of your father, your father and mother both had legally adopted a girl child i.e. your sister. Your father has passed away intestate or without making his Will, and since your sister (adopted) also falls in the same class as you do, the property will be divided between the three of you equally, i.e. mother, sister and yourself. To clarify, your father’s properties will devolve upon you, your sister and your mother, equally, all being class-I heirs under the Hindu Succession Act, 1956, as he passed away intestate. In case your mother makes a Will or wants to transfer her share in the property during her lifetime, she will only be entitled to decide for and transfer her share in the properties and not yours or your sister’s share.

My father-in-law divided the property between two sons as a gifted deed. My husband transferred all the property as a sales deed to my brother-in-law and filed for a divorce after the birth of our son. Does my son have a right to claim the proceeds? The property is in Kerala. Kindly advise.

—Aruna Veena

Assuming that your husband received a share of the property from your father-in law under a valid and duly executed and registered gift deed and further assuming that your husband thereafter transferred his share in the property to his brother for valid sale consideration and through a legally valid instrument of transfer, i.e., a sale deed, your son will not be entitled to claim any share in the sale proceeds that your husband received after selling the property. Being the absolute owner of his share in property, he can absolutely and without any fetters deal with his share in the property in the manner he deems fit.

Aradhana Bhansali is partner, Rajani Associates. Queries and views at mintmoney@livemint.com


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