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Indian Christian Woman’s Right to Property

According to the Indian Succession Act, 1925, a Christian widow is entitled to one-third of her husbands property.

All children get an equal share in the remaining property.

Children of pre-deceased sons and daughters get their parents share of the property.

In case there are no children, the widow gets Rs.5, 000 along with half the share of the property left after deducting that amount.

A child in the womb is also entitled to a share of the property.

Any money earned by a Christian woman is her own property. Nobody can take it away from her. She has the right to will away or gift away her own money, jewellery and other property to anybody she wants.

Even if a Christian womans father spends money on gifts at her marriage, she is still entitled to a share in her fathers property

The rules relating to intestate succession among Christians would come into operation only if the deceased had not executed a will or any document of gift or a settlement deed. In the absence of the aforesaid documents the rules regulating succession enumerated under sections 29 to 49 in Part V of the Indian Succession Act, 1925 would come into play. But, if there is a Will executed by the deceased, the general law as contained in sections 57 to 391 would apply.

Where a Will was executed by a deceased, succession to his property is regulated by the provisions of the Will. If an executor is named in the Will, he has to get the Will probated as it is mandatory under section 213 of the Indian Succession Act. After obtaining probate, it is the duty of the executor to carry out the distribution of the property in accordance with the provisions of the Will. It may be noted that probate can be granted only to the executor appointed under a Will as is provided under section 222. If no executor is appointed by the Will, anyone of the persons claiming a right under the Will can file a petition for obtaining letters of administration as is provided under section 219. [But if the deceased has died intestate, wife or husband, as the case may be, has got preferential right to get letters of administration as is provided under section 219 (a) and (e).] In the case of Christians, those persons who are connected either by marriage or consanguinity are entitled to obtain letters of administration. On receipt of letters of administration, the intention of the testator as embodied in the Will has to be carried out by the person who obtained letters of administration as is provided under section 216. As section 212 exempts Christians also from the operation of that section, it is not mandatory for Christians to obtain letters of administration for establishing right to the property of an intestate. Therefore, in the absence of a Will a suit can be filed for establishing the rights which can be followed up by partition. Against a preliminary decree in a suit for partition an appeal will lie and Final Decree will be drawn up only after the decision in the appeal. To give effect to the Final Decree, in case of difference of opinion among the parties, execution proceedings will have to be instituted. For and on behalf of the deceased, the grantee of probate or letters of administration alone shall have power to sue or prosecute any suit or otherwise act as representative of the deceased as is provided under section 216.

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60 thoughts on “Indian Christian Woman’s Right to Property

  1. I am a christian married women, married on July 2006. We are three children, I am the eldest, I have younger sister and younger brother. My father has ancestoral property, he has 1 acre of land, and houses, all are ancestoral. My father is 72 years old, all of sudden he fell sick and diagnosed with thyroid cancer, so my father now wants to write a will giving bigger share 80% of the property to my brother because he is a son, and in remaining 20% he is giving 10% to me and 10% to my sister, because my father knows that if he dies intestate property will be shared equally, he doesn’t want that to happen. we both daughters have spent lot of money supporting my father ‘s family since last 15 years since we were elders and started to earn first . Now how to stop my father writing a will or how to claim our share in the property. Please advice.

  2. I am christian married women, married on June 2006. We are three siblings, me being eldest daughter, I have younger sister and younger brother. My father has 1 acre of land and houses, all these are ancestoral property, nothing was self earned by my father. Since we were elder sisters started earning first and supported my father’s family also my brother education. We have spent a lot on father’s family even after getting married. My mother expired 1.5 years ago. All of a sudden my father fell sick and diagnosed with thyroid cancer. Now my father is writing a will, to give bigger share to my brother only because he is a son. He is giving out all the good portions, 80% of his property to my brother and 10% to me and 10% to my sister. He wants to write this will now, because he wants to avoid us getting equal share. My father knows that if he dies intestate then property will be divided equally, he doesn’t want to give equal share to us because we are daughters. Now how to stop him writing will or how to claim equal share in ancestoral property. kindly advice

  3. He got it from father. I mean it is purely ancestor property. He did not purchased any thing during his life time.

  4. No he did not purchase that property, my father got it from his father or from my grandfather

  5. Thanks for your reply..
    How can he say that, because he spent money on my brother’s marriage as well. More over, my marriage was simple, no dowry or sthridhanam was given, even bridegroom shared the marriage expenses. He spent more on my brother’s marriage than mine.
    After marriage also he did not spent any thing on us, instead I was supporting him financially in his difficult time. I can produce bank statements showing evidence of money transaction.
    After receiving all the help from me, now he is showing his true color that son is important than daughters. why this discrimination between son and daughter. I want to fight for my right, how can I proceed with this.

  6. where i said its legally valid, i said its a catch. to keep relation together.
    what he spend on son is not considered. if he is look after him now. giving financial support is not important but taking care old aged parents.
    anyway you can file partition case for your rights but it will divide not only property but family and relation too.
    again if said property is managed and developed by your brother/father then getting your share also will be less if you have no contribution in developing it after your marriage.
    think all these aspect before you knock doors of law. and to reach final verdict it take decades. when it has no value for all the valuable time you spend fighting by breaking all relations and energy. BEST OF LUCK

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