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Self-Acquired and Ancestral Property


wealthymatters.comAfter a person dies, there are often pretty big rifts in the family.Hidden stresses come out in the open and contesting claims to the deceased person’s property is fairly common.The problems are compounded by the fact that the law defines self acquired and ancestral property differently from common  parlance.

According to the law for Hindus,self acquired property is any property purchased by an individual from his resources or any property he acquired as a part of the division of any Ancestral/Coparcenary property or acquired as a legal heir or by any Testamentary document such as ‘Will’ etc.

On the other hand,ancestral or Hindu coparcenary property refers to any property acquired by the Hindu great grand father, which then passes  undivided down the next three generations up to the present generation of great grand son/daughter. In short , firstly,this property should be four generation old, secondly it should not have been divided by the users in the joint Hindu family as once a division of the property takes place, the share or portion which each Coparcenar gets after the division becomes his or her self acquired property. The right to a share in ancestral or coparcenary property accrues by birth itself, unlike other forms of inheritance, where inheritance opens only on the death of the owner. The rights in ancestral property are determined per stripes and not per capita. This means that the share of each generation is first determined and the successive generations in turn sub divide what has been inherited by their respective predecessor. Properties inherited from mother, grandmother, uncle and even brother is not ancestral property. Property inherited by will and gift are not ancestral properties.

And to add a further twist,self acquired property can become ancestral property if it is thrown into the pool of ancestral properties and enjoyed in common.

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About Keerthika Singaravel
Engineer,Investor,Businessperson

347 Responses to Self-Acquired and Ancestral Property

  1. Neha Devi says:

    My grandmother owned a land. She gave a part of the land to her 3rd daughter. She got a loan & constructed a house on that part of land. Loan has been paid off. My grandmother died in 2012 without giving her share of land to anyone. My grandmother has 7 daughters. The 3rd daughter expired a week ago. She has also not transferred the land to anyone. She was unmarried. Her 3 sisters are married & well settled. She looked after her parents and 3 other sisters & a neice. Among these 3 sisters 2 are unmarried. My mother & myself were also solely dependent on her. My parents seperated 25 years back. Now the married sisters are saying that since the property is not in the name of a survivor, it may go to any trust or govt. They want to sell it with everyone’s consent & agreement. But since the two unmarried sisters have no other source of income do they have right to claim her property? And do the married sisters have right to claim on her property or only on the property that was in the name of my grandmother? Please advice.

    • First chill! No government or trust is going to grab your land.
      Before, I can tell you what happens to land in your grand mother’s name I need to know if her husband is still alive and if she had any sons in addition to her 7 daughters.
      Also, the dependents of your Aunt have a right to residence in the said house and no one can force them to sell to enable partition.

  2. DEBASMITA RAY says:

    my father was gifted property by his brothers. now my father is deceased. his successors are my mother, my brother and i (daughter). my father did not leave a will. in this case who is/are the heir to his property. can my mother bequeath the property to my name?

    • Your mother, brother and you have a right to 1/3rd the property each. Your mother can transfer her 1/3rd share to you, if that is her wish.

  3. jai says:

    my grandfather self-acquired a properity and gifted to my mother and we are two children to my mother. My mother registered the whole property on my brother’s name. Do I have a right to claim the share in my grandfather’s property. Please advise.

    • Unfortunately no.

      • Jack says:

        Hi, My Grandmother bought the property & has written it to only Grand sons that’s not my father or his brother but to their sons, now the property was separated with the cousin (grand children) & also the our father & his brother has 1 share in it, now our property that is my elder brother , myself & my father has our share but not divided into 3 , but all the document chitta, patta etc has been transferred in our name. now my sisthe is married & she is asking share. please advise.

      • If you grandmother, willed her self-acquired property to her grandsons only, what was the means used to share a part of the property with your father and uncle?

  4. keerthi says:

    Hi.my father in law has self acquired property. My husband expired and my daughter is three years old.my father in law is selling his property and dividing for his daughters.can my daughter has any rights on her grandfather prope ifrty.could you please suggest what can we do.

    • If you have no other source of income, you could apply for maintenance. Your father-in-law can do as he pleases with his self-acquired property.

  5. keerthi says:

    Hi.my father in law has self acquired property. My husband expired and my daughter is three years old.my father in law is selling his property and dividing for his daughters.can my daughter has any rights on her grandfather property.could you please suggest what can we do.

  6. anita says:

    my father has transferred his self acquired property to my brothers. can i challenge his decision now or after his death in future?? or any kind of legal stand i can take? i am from haryana

    • Unfortunately Anita, this being self-acquired property, there is nothing you can do.

  7. shrawan kumar choubey says:

    sir create some property in the name of my father and younger brother but now today they are not ready to give me any thing out of that pls give advice so that i can get my partition.

    • Shrawan you are going to have a tough time proving that you paid for the property and didn’t mean to gift it.

  8. varinder says:

    Hi Keerthika, My father has become mentally unsound and is living with my elder sister. He had a property which we decided to sell since there is no one to look after the property. My elder sister is handling the deal. How do I make sure that my interests are preserved? i.e. she does not cheat me out of my share of the property, she is transparent in the deal and she does not spend my father’s money on herself and her family and attribute it as expenditure on my father.

    • Well Varinder, you could involve yourself in the sale process and the care of your father, so that you have a better understanding of the financial transactions taking place. That way you can assert yourself, if you feel you are being cheated out of your share.

  9. Kewal says:

    My grandfather before his death have a willing his acquired properties the name of my uncle excepted my father and other sons and daughters my father also died how i can claim for properties please suggest me

    • Your grand father was fully within his rights to will his self-acquired properties as he pleased. You have no right to them. Your father and his siblings could have challenged the will, at the time of his death if they had reason to believe coercion, fraud, unsoundness of mind of your grand-father etc

  10. aryan says:

    sir…. my mother has inherited her mothers property… some time back my maternal uncle cheated her by taking signatures on stamp paper stating that she has willfully given up her rights in the property… now can we claim the same property,, my mother is alive..

    • Aryan as your mother made no police complaint of receiving threats from your uncle at the time of signing away her rights, its going to be hard to prove anything now. If you are prepared with money and have the time and energy, your mother could still go to court but she will have to be a good witness and explain things well and say how she was coerced or fooled.

  11. Padmapriya.M says:

    Hai, need your help , my father got ancestral property through will made in the year 1949 by his great grandmother( Father’s – mother’s – mother) and the will is registered, now my aunts are also claiming equal share, saying great grand mother has no rights to make a will. the will is made in favor of grand sons only. please help in this matter

    • Pdmapriya where is your family from? What is the tradition in your community? Unless there is some law applying to your community alone, your aunts have no rights to your father’s property.

  12. nagraj says:

    I asking sons wife sir

    • Yes, why not her sign too?

  13. nagraj says:

    Sir father property transvered to his wife(as he died of ill)
    They had a son and a daughter. IN 2007 Wife and daughter registered to the
    son. now i purchased and rigistered vith him (sign of him and all his childrens also) ,is their any rules to put sign of his wife if it is neccessary what to do

  14. Sagar Talpade says:

    My grandmother had a property purchased some where in alibaug/ raigad but after her death i am not knowing where it is and do not have any proofs want to search this land, is it possible to search this

    • You could engage a lawyer for the same. But its a long and painstaking job and you will find it hard to prove its yours if someone else has grabbed it.

  15. neha says:

    my grandfather have a 3 three in that my father and his brother leaving. but my father house part is so smalll so we wnat to make but they dont allow my father to make a house in our part………. so what we have to do……….. help me

    • Neha please repeat your question. I have not understood it.

  16. Laxmarao says:

    My grand father acquired some property on his own. He died in 1936 without writing a will when my father was 6 year old . He has two sons. My father was elder. As a legal heir my father got some of the property. Now my father is 84 year old. We are four brothers. My last brother Mr X is an advocate. he managed to get my father’s signature on the will granting all rights on the total property on his wife’s name, and registered the document. Can we challenge it ?
    Also Mr X is advocating my fathers cases in the court. So he is able to get any paper signed. Can I approach law board to take action against Mr X for his unethical actions. Pl advise

    • Proving anything is likely to be tough, unless your father himself approaches the courts. Yes you can complain about your brother’s unethical practices.

  17. dinesh lakum says:

    Dear Mam
    MY father (still alive) was possessing a flat in one of CHS in Mumbai. Around 20 years back he gifted that property to my cousin on a plain paper without giving him any documents of flat.
    Now we are demanding our property back since they have purchased for themselves but they
    are refusing. In this case we as natural share holders of our property can we get this property back. FYI…..He has already changed membership of flat to his name from my father’s name.

    Please advise.

  18. dinesh lakum says:

    Dear Mam
    MY father (still alive) was possessing a flat in one of CHS in Mumbai. Around 20 years back he gifted that property to my cousin on a plain paper without giving him any documents of flat.
    Now we are demanding our property back since they have purchased for themsevles but they
    are refusing. In this case we has natural share holders of our property can we challenge the CHS as well as my cousin who is staying in said property for last 20 years.

    Please advise.

    • dinesh lakum says:

      mam I am awaiting your comments ……………request you to advise

    • Dinesh,
      Unfortunately you can’t demand the return of a gift. You have lost the property forever.

      • dinesh lakum says:

        mam thanks for your comment but please note that the gift was made on plain piece of paper and it was’nt stamped or registered.

        Regards

      • Noted. Advice remains same.

  19. Anit Sharma says:

    Hi,My father is having a property in mumbai as well as in village..we have 3 brother out of which 1 is expired 2002 and he has 1 daughter.and his wife got married again and the daughter is staying with her.Now they have filed a FIR in court for the share in the property own by my father.so pls help me out

    • Your brother’s child has a share in the properties and you will have to give them that part.

  20. Ramchandar says:

    My father deceased in 2003 (Without making a will) making my mother(50%) and me(50%) as nominee in his flat.Now in the society, share certificate name has been changed to my mother(more than 10 yrs have passed), and I am 100% nominee.can my mother Gift-deed this flat on my name ?(Its her wish to do so). I have 1 brother and 1 sister too.
    PLEASE SUGGEST

    • Not necessary. As you are sole nominee you will get the whole property after your mother passes on.

      • Ramchandar says:

        The reason i asked is, other siblings are also asking for their shares by telling ‘its fathers property’ and he has not made any will.to be at a safer side my mother wants to giftdeed it to me. The only doubt is , the property was of my father and after his demise the share certificate got transferred to mothers name …so does she have the legal right to giftdeed it to me ?

      • Yes, she has the right.

  21. Sunil Lagadapati says:

    Hi , I am going to purchase the land from one farmer and that land is inherited from his grand father. Now the title book and other documents are on the farmer

    But the questions are as follows.
    1. He is having two daughters and one son. Would we need to take the signatures from all the three of them while doing registration or just farmer, wife and his son’s signature would be fine.

    2. If we need to get those daughters signature also then do we need to take them as a witness or some thing else?

    Could you please help me on this?

    • Better get all their signatures as witnesses.

  22. rc sharma says:

    PLEASE HELP ME TO TELL THAT AFTER DEATH OF MY GRANDFATHER MY FATHER AND HIS BROTHER ENJOYED THE PROPERTY MY GRANDFATHER LEFT BEHIND.ON 01 MAY 2014 MY FATHER DIED &LEFT BEHIND FOUR SONS.AFTER 4 MONTHS THE DEATH OF MY FATHER MY YOUNGEST BROTHER SUBMITTED A CERTIFIED COPY OF A WILL MADE BY MY FATHER IN FAVOUR OF ONLY MY YOUNGEST BROTHER REGISTERED IN PRESENCE OF TWO IN WHO ARE THE FRIENDS OF HIM AND PHOTOS /SIGNATURES OF MY FATHER ON WILL DIFFER FROM MY FATHERS ACTUAL PHOTOS/SIGNATURES.PROPERTY NOT PURCHASED BY MY GRANDFATHER/FATHER.I WANT TO KNOW THAT MY FATHER HAD RIGHT TO MAKE WILL OF THAT PROPERTY OR NOT?

    • You can challenge the genuineness of this will.

  23. sivani says:

    My father bought a property and died..But it was registered on my mother’ s name. If she won’t write a will, it comes to daughter or son?

    If she wants to give it to daughter,…..son’s permission needed?

    • If your mother wants to leave the property solely to you, she can either gift it to you in her lifetime or she can make a registered will to this effect. I repeat, registering is absolutely necessary.

      • Padmapriya.M says:

        Hai, need your help , my father got ancestral property through will made in the year 1949 by his great grandmother( Father’s – mother’s – mother) and the will is registered, now my aunts are also claiming equal share, saying great grand mother has no rights to make a will. the will is made in favor of grand sons only. please help in this matter

      • I have already answered your query once before.

    • dinesh lakum says:

      mam I am awaiting your comments…………..please advise

  24. kumar says:

    my grandfather died in 1990 after death of my father who have no brothers and sisters. the whole property has changed to my name at my 18th age. but my sisters who are married are telling they are having share in that property. we are in village in tamilnadu. please help me. all are well settled expect me.

    • Your sisters have a right to their hare of this property.The fact that you are less well off than them doesn’t diminish their right.

  25. Ravi LH says:

    hi please help me out. grandfather purchase a land in the year 1945, and my father got property title in his name in the year 1991, and now my father selling that same property, and i dont have idea of tax on sale of property so. if it divide to me n brothers. what is the tax wil come each individual including father

    • As the property is in your dad’s name and he is the seller, any taxes if due are the sole responsibility of your dad only.

  26. kvr says:

    on death of my brother (unmarried) his house was transferred to my mother however my moother has transferred the property in my sisters name. is this in order as per hindu succession act. I have performed the last rites of my brother. can a property be transferred without legal heir certificate

    • As presumably the sole class-I heir of your brother, your mother rightfully inherited his property. Thereafter it became her self earned property and she could do with it as she chose, including transferring it to your sister.

  27. hemant says:

    can my mother has a right to claim her deceased fathers ancestral property her father had expired on 1995 and her brother has not entered the name of my mother 7/12 uttara my mother is still alive and she wants equal share and my mothers father has no registered will or gift deed

    • Of course your mother can make a claim for her share of the property.

  28. VASUDEVAN says:

    Dear Keerthika, This is in response to the reply posted by yourself for query by Vasudevan on Oct 19, 2014.
    Many thanks for your prompt reply. Regarding your query, please note that in the purchase deeds, the share among them is not specified. That should mean that the share is equal for all of them. Which should account for 4.5 cents now. They have passed away in the following sequences. Elder sister’s minor son in 1950, elder sister in 1978, My mother in 1995, My mother’s younger sister in 2010. They have not executed any ‘will’ either individually or jointly. We belong to Hindu religion and caste is Ezhava. My mother is having a son and two daughters (as mentioned earlier). My mother’s younger sister has a daughter alone. The elder sister and her son have no successors to their own. So understandably, we become their successors and living heirs now. The plot was physically possessed by my mother until she was alive. After her death, the plot is in my possession. The plot is still in the names of the four deceased as named in the original purchase deed (as per the revenue and registration records).The land revenue is paid in their names in a single revenue receipt.
    Now, we have decided to share the above plot among us (that is, between myself, my two sisters and the daughter of my mother’s younger sister). So, I request you to kindly clarify the following:
    (1) My mother’s elder sister and her son together shared 9 cents out of this 18 cents. As they didn’t have any natural successors, Is this share equally dividable by the remaining four of us (myself, my two sisters and the daughter of my mother’s younger sister)?
    (2) Can you please quote the relevant rules in this regard?
    Many thanks for your valuable feedback and advice.

    • Vasudevan was your mother’s elder sister’s marriage intact at the time of her death? If so her husband and his heirs have a claim on her share and her son’s share of the property. http://wealthymatters.com/2013/03/27/intestate-succession-as-per-the-hindu-succession-act1956/

      Else, the share of this branch of your family, devolves equally on the remaining two branches. As your sub-branch has more heirs, each person’s share will be smaller. However should you cousins mutually agree to share the property in a different ratio, there is no bar in law.

  29. Anand says:

    I am planning to buy a Agricultural land from A Widow and her Son. Land is in the name of Widows late Husband … No will is left. Land was acquired by Widows husband in 1971.

    Can the widow sell this property without the consent of her daughters — who are majors … Pls let me know …

    • No you need the consent of all the daughter’s too.

  30. VASUDEVAN says:

    i am Vasudevan from Kerala. my mother along with her elder sister &her son and younger sister jointly purchased a plot of 18 cents in 1941.All of them are expired long ago.The plot is still in their names and land revenue is being paid accordingly. The elder sister and her son have no living heirs.My mother has a son and two daughters.The younger sister of my mother has a daughter .Please clarify whether all the four living heirs have equal right on this property or not as per Hindu succession act.

    • No.
      Possibly,members of your branch of the family will have smaller shares individually.
      To give you exact proportions, I will have to know in what proportion the land revenue is being assessed on all 4 original owners and when different members of your family passed away and whether they left behind a will.

      • VASUDEVAN says:

        Dear Keerthika, Many thanks for your prompt reply. Regarding your query, please note that in the purchase deeds, the share among them is not specified. That should mean that the share is equal for all of them. Which should account for 4.5 cents now. They have passed away in the following sequences. Elder sister’s minor son in 1950, elder sister in 1978, My mother in 1995, My mother’s younger sister in 2010. They have not executed any ‘will’ either individually or jointly. We belong to Hindu religion and caste is Ezhava. My mother is having a son and two daughters (as mentioned earlier). My mother’s younger sister has a daughter alone. The elder sister and her son have no successors to their own. So understandably, we become their successors and living heirs now. The plot was physically possessed by my mother until she was alive. After her death, the plot is in my possession. The plot is still in the names of the four deceased as named in the original purchase deed (as per the revenue and registration records).The land revenue is paid in their names in a single revenue receipt.
        Now, we have decided to share the above plot among us (that is, between myself, my two sisters and the daughter of my mother’s younger sister). So, I request you to kindly clarify the following:
        (1) My mother’s elder sister and her son together shared 9 cents out of this 18 cents. As they didn’t have any natural successors, Is this share equally dividable by the remaining four of us (myself, my two sisters and the daughter of my mother’s younger sister)?
        (2) Can you please quote the relevant rules in this regard?
        Many thanks for your valuable feedback and advice.

  31. yogesh r kature says:

    hi i am yogesh
    from nagpur maharahtra , i want to know that if a property aquired by father from his father
    but at that time property was divide in three part and one part is on my father name so right now there is dispute on property matter & father giving threate me to taken out form house & also not giving any share in that property , so what is my right according to ansisteral property
    mam please reply me immideately

    • The property is considered the self-earned property of your father and he has the right to do with it as he chooses.

  32. lovely says:

    i have a question-i am a married woman and my father has property which is given by his father and gandfather so in which, i have some right in this or not?

    • What exactly do you mean by given? Was it gifted? Was there a will?Was there any partition in your father or grandfather’s generation.

  33. mailatvas says:

    Hi,
    Can you please suggest me in this?
    My grandfather has 2 sons and one daughter. Grandfather was allotted with a site by government and since grand pa didn’t had any money, my father (the elder son) paid to the government and the site was registered in grandfather name. After grandfather’s death, the younger brother and the daughter gave no objection through notary and the site got transferred to the elder son. Subsequently a Release deed was also made by younger brother and daughter and the full rights are given to elder brother. After some time the site was sold. Now the younger brother is disputing and asking a share in the amount.
    Is it legally stands?

    Thanks

    • No

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