A succession certificate, as defined by the Indian Succession Act, is a document that permits the bearer to act on behalf of the deceased in the purchase of securities and debts that are payable to or in his name. The principal document that legal heirs typically use to lodge a claim to a deceased person’s movable assets in the absence of a will is a succession certificate. Because a succession certificate does not establish a deceased person’s right, title, or interest in a particular piece of property or the entire property, it does not give the right of succession to that person’s belongings.
Why Do You Need to Get a Succession Certificate?
A succession certificate is issued by the district judge of the competent jurisdiction. To get a certificate, a written petition must be filed with the relevant district court. The deceased person’s usual abode at the time of his death would be the district court’s relevant jurisdiction in filing a petition for a certificate. The applicable jurisdiction would be the place where the deceased’s things might be found if such a location doesn’t exist.
A Complete Procedure to Get a Succession Certificate
The following highlights the legal process for obtaining the succession certificate:
Step 1: Making a Petition
Once the necessary court fees have been paid, the applicant will draft a petition, check and sign it, and deliver it to the district judge in the relevant jurisdiction.
Step 2: Court submission
The petitioner or applicant will have the opportunity for a preliminary hearing before the district judge, who will then set a date for the petition’s final hearing and notify anyone he deems appropriate of the hearing.
Step 3: Issuing a certificate
The applicant will be granted the certificate if the judge determines after hearing from all parties involved that he is within his rights to apply for one.
Step 4: Bond Submission
To cover any potential losses resulting from the use or misuse of this certificate, the district judge may additionally order the applicant to submit a bond with one or more sureties or any other kind of security.
Distinctions Between a Legal Heir Certificate and a Succession Certificate
The following are the main differences between a Succession Certificate and a Legal Heir Certificate:
|Legal Heir Certificate
|in cases where a will has not been made, to obtain the right to inherit the deceased’s debts and securities.
|Claiming the deceased’s estate as a legitimate heir.
|The applicant’s relationship to the deceased as well as the requested securities and list of debts.
|lists the surviving family members of the deceased.
|grants the bearer of the certificate the right to inherit the estate’s assets and debts while protecting those who are paying off debt.
|determines and confirms the surviving heirs of a deceased individual.
|The holder may not be the ultimate beneficiary of the estate of the deceased.
|It is permissible for the possessor to inherit the estate.
Format of Succession Certificate
An example of a succession certificate format is provided here:
IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh Petition No. xx of 20xx Date of
Institution: xx/xx/xxxx Date of Decision: xx/xx/xxxx Mr. A, son of Mr. P R/o Lucknow
- Mr. X
- Mr. Y, son/wife
of Mr. Z, resident of Lucknow…RESPONDENTS
PETITION UNDER SECTION 372 of the INDIAN SUCCESSION ACT, 1925, FOR GRANT OF SUCCESSION CERTIFICATE
To, Mr. A, son of Mr. P R/o Lucknow WHEREAS, On xx day of xx, you applied for a Certificate under Section 372 of the Indian Succession Act, 1925, regarding 100 debentures of PQR Ltd. with nos. xx to xx that was owned by Mr. P, a resident of Lucknow, who worked for PQR Ltd. with an employee no. xxxxxx from the Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, head office. As a result, you have been given this certificate, which gives you the authority to pursue those debts. Entered under my hand, Mr. J Judge (xx Division), the seal of the court on this xx day of xx(Signature)
The Succession Certificate’s Impact
The main objective of this certificate is to protect all parties who, while paying debts, do it in good faith. In addition, the certificate holder can accept any interest or dividend on the securities and negotiate or transfer the securities by the terms of the certificate. All payments made to and by the certificate holder on behalf of the dead will therefore be legally recognized.
But this does not mean that the person holding the certificate is the rightful owner or heir of the securities. Who is the rightful heir or heir is determined by a different legal process.
Specifics of the Certificate Petition
The following information must be included in the petition for the certificate submitted to the district judge, which the applicant must sign and verify:
- The deceased person’s time of death.
- The details of the property that falls under the district judge’s jurisdiction upon making such an application, or the deceased’s usual residence at the time of death, if that information is unavailable.
- the deceased person’s family or other close relatives, together with their homes.
- The applicant, or petitioner, has certain rights.
- the lack of any grounds for invalidating the certificate’s issuance.
- The securities and debts for which a request for such a certificate is made.
- Validity of the Succession Document
- Anywhere in India, the succession certificate is valid. However, for a certificate issued abroad by an Indian representative (appointed by the government) accredited to that state to be considered valid in India, it must be properly stamped in compliance with the Court Fees Act, of 1870. Only then will the certificate be considered equivalent to one issued in India.