Rights of Female under Hindu Succession Act

Date : 2021-09-08

Introduction:

As per the amendments in Hindu Succession in the year 2005, a hindu female was permitted to inherit equal share of property or assets compared to male members of the family. Also, a widow is now entitled to her husband’s and her father’s property.  Although, right to property for women varies upon religion to religion in India, therefore there are no single set of laws which regulate the property rights of Indian women in the society. There are various ways through which a woman can obtain her share in the property, i.e. through Will Creation, Gift Deed or Private Trust Creation

Amendments 2005 under Hindu Succession Act

Section 15 –
It states the general rules of succession for Hindu females in India and they are as follows:
In case a Hindu female dies intestate, her property shall be transferred as per Section 16 of the Hind Succession Act,
  *  To the sons and daughters and the husband;
  *  To the heirs of the husband;
  *  To the mother and father;
  *  To the heirs of the father; and
  *  To the heirs of the mother.
 
Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1),—
   *  In the absence of any son or daughter of the deceased (including the children of any pre-deceased son or daughter), any property inherited by a female Hindu from her father or mother shall devolve not upon the other heirs referred to in sub-section (1) in the order specified therein, but upon the heirs of the father.
   *  Though, in the absence of any son or daughter of the deceased , any estate inherited by a female Hindu from her husband or father-in-law shall devolve not upon the other heirs referred to in sub-section (1) in the order specified therein, but upon the heirs of the husband.
 
Section 16 –
The following rules govern the sequence of succession among the heirs alluded to in section 15, as well as the division of the intestate's property among those heirs:
 
Rule 1- Among the heirs listed in sub-section (1) of section 15, those included in one entry are preferred over those included in any subsequent entry, and those included in the same entry take.
Rule 2- If the intestate's son or daughter predeceased, the intestate leaving his or her own children alive at the time of the intestate's death, the children of such son or daughter must take the share that such son or daughter would have taken if surviving at the time of the intestate's death.
Rule 3- The interstate property shall be devolved on the heirs referred to in clauses (b), (d), and (e) of sub-section (1) and in sub-section (2) of section 15 in the same order and according to the same rules as if the property had been the father's, mother's, or husband's, as the case may be, and such a person had died intestate in respect of the property.
The two provisions listed above are new additions to the legislation governing the succession of a woman's property.

Conclusion:

The Amendments in 2005 was a major reform that allowed married women to inherit their father's property, which was previously solely available to male members of the family. Furthermore, a change to Section 6 of the Hindu Succession Act has made it possible for women to inherit property as coparceners. ELT Consultants are succession laws experts and have wide knowledge of this topic. They are litigation practitioners and deal in cases like partition suits, other property disputes, Suit for Declarations and Injunctions.

Author :