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In case of a sudden demise of a family member, a legal heir certificate must be obtained for transferring the assets of the deceased to his/her legal heirs. A legal heir certificate is a very important document to establish the relationship between the deceased and legal heirs. Once the death certificate is obtained from the municipality/corporation, it is required that the successors apply for this legal heir certificate to claim their right over the deceased person’s properties and dues. Usually, lawyers help draft and register a legal heir certificate.
A legal heir certificate is different from a succession certificate, a succession certificate is generally issued by the civil court and there are separate procedures to obtain the same. Major differences between these two certificates are listed below:
The following persons are considered legal heirs and can claim a legal heir certificate under Indian Law:
As stated above, a legal heir certificate identifies the rightful successor who then, can claim the assets/properties of the deceased person. All eligible successors must possess this certificate to lay a claim over the deceased person’s property.
Generally, for any property purchase or registration, the buyer should request for a legal heir certificate to ascertain the ownership of the property. There can be instances, where there are several legal heirs for an ancestral property and in such cases, it is required that all legal heirs sign on the deed of conveyance giving their approval to avoid any litigations.
Legal Heir certificate can be obtained by approaching the area/taluk Thasildhar, or from the corporation/municipality office of the respective area, and from the district civil court. This certificate names all legal heirs’ of the deceased person and is issued only after a proper enquiry. Listed below are the steps involved in the process of obtaining a legal heir certificate:
with a signed application. This application should contain the names of all the legal heirs, their relationship with the deceased and addresses of the family members. The death certificate of the departed person should also be attached. (Death certificate must be obtained from the municipality/corporation office)
The process of obtaining a legal heir certificate generally takes 30 days. If there is an unnecessary delay in receiving this certificate or the concerned authorities fail to respond, you should then approach the Revenue Division Officer(RDO)/sub-collector.
In order to obtain a legal heir certificate, following is the list of documents required: