Succession Law

Succession Law

It is one of the branches personal laws. Devolution of property after death was always a concern of human civilization which was developed in different manner in different sects. The rules of inheritance given by the ancient law-givers are meagre. The reason probably was that property was held invariably by the members of a joint family and separate acquisitions were inconsiderable: in Hindus there was no necessity to lay down detailed rules of inheritance. Partitions must have been infrequent; and where they occurred, they would only bring new joint families into existence. On the death of a member in a coparcenary, his male issue took his interest. Though it is now usual to speak of it is passing by survivorship to the entire coparcenary, according to the stricter conception, the interest of coparcener, on his death, went as unobstructed inheritance to his son, grandson and great-grandson. It was only when he died without male issue, it passed by survivorship to the other coparceners. Now it is governed by a codified law. The codified law however is not applicable to the members of Scheduled Tribes. For Mohammedans, rules of succession are based upon the Sharia, which is thus partially applied in India, and laws and judicial pronouncements adapting and adjusting Sharia for Indian society. The portion of the fiqh applicable to Indian Muslims as personal law is termed as Mohammedan law. Despite being largely uncodified, Mohammedan law has the same legal status as other codified statutes. The development of the law is largely on the basis of judicial precedent, which in recent times has been subject to review by the courts. The concept of the judicial precedent and of ‘review by the courts’ is a key component of the British common law upon which Indian law is based. The contribution of Justice V.R. Krishna Iyer in the matter of interpretation of the statutory as well as personal law is significant.

The following aspects are covered by the Law of Succession:

  1. Devolution of interest in coparcenary property.
  2. Devolution of interest in the property of a Tarwad, Tavazhi, Kutumba, Kavaru or Illom.
  3. General rules of succession in the case of males.
  4. Order of succession among heirs.
  5. Distribution of property among heirs in Class I of the Schedule.
  6. Distribution of property among heirs in Class II of the Schedule.
  7. Order of succession among agnates and cognates.
  8. Computation of degrees.
  9. Property of a female Hindu to be her absolute property.
  10. General rules of succession in the case of female.
  11. Order of succession and manner of distribution among heirs of a female Hindu.
  12. Special provisions respecting person governed by Marumakkattayam and Aliyasantana Laws.
  13. Testamentary succession.
  14. Proceedings for succession certificate under the provisions of Indian Succession Act, 1925.
  15. Proceedings for heir-ship certificate under the provisions of Bombay Regulation VIII of 1827.