Will

Know the difference between a Hindu Will and a Muslim Will

calendar06 Apr, 2023
timeReading Time: 4 Minutes
Hindu Will

Making a Hindu Will and a Muslim Will has a major differences. A will, also known as a testament, implies the legal revelation or declaration of the ultimate goal of a person for their own property, which shall come into effect after their demise. It is a one-sided archive and declares the person or persons who will receive the testator’s property.

The testator can change it when he or she is ready to give away the property. The Indian Succession Act, 1925, governs wills made by Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Jains. But Muslims cannot represent themselves by this act and can arrange their assets as mentioned in Muslim Law.

What is a Hindu Will?

A Hindu Will is a legal document that outlines how a Hindu’s property will be distributed after their death. Hindu Will is governed by the Hindu Succession Act, 1956, which is a codified law that governs the distribution of property among Hindus. The act applies to Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists, and it has been amended several times to bring about gender equality and to give equal rights to women in inheritance.

Under the Hindu Succession Act, a Hindu can make a will and dispose of his or her property as per their wishes. The will can be made orally or in writing, and it can be registered or unregistered. However, it is advisable to have a written and registered will, as it is more legally binding and reduces the chances of disputes among the heirs.

Some of the key provisions related to Hindu Wills under the Hindu Succession Act 1956 are as follows:

  • A Hindu can dispose of his or her property by way of a will.
  • The will can be made by a Hindu of sound mind who is not a minor.
  • The will can be made in any language and can be in writing or oral.
  • The will can be registered or unregistered.
  • The property can be bequeathed to any person or institution, including a family member, friend, or charity.
  • The will can be revoked or altered at any time during the testator’s lifetime.
  • In case of multiple wills, the latest will prevails.
  • The property not covered under the will shall be distributed among the legal heirs as per the Hindu Succession Act.

It is important to note that any Hindu who dies intestate (without making a will) will have their property distributed among their legal heirs as per the Hindu Succession Act. Therefore, making a will is an important step for any Hindu to ensure that their property is distributed as per their wishes.

In summary, a Hindu Will is a legal document that enables Hindus to dispose of their property as per their wishes, and it is governed by the Hindu Succession Act 1956. It is recommended that any Hindu who wishes to make a will should consult with a qualified lawyer who specializes in this niche to ensure that the will is legally valid and binding.

What is a Muslim Will?

In Islamic law, a will is referred to as a “Wasiyyat”. A Muslim will is a legal document that outlines how a Muslim’s property will be distributed after their death. The Muslim will is

governed by the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act 1937, which is a codified law that governs the distribution of property among Muslims in India.

Under the Muslim Personal Law, a Muslim can make a will and dispose of his or her property as per their wishes. However, there are some limitations to this right. A Muslim cannot dispose of more than one-third of their property by way of a will without the consent of their legal heirs. This means that at least two-thirds of a Muslim’s property must be distributed among the legal heirs as per Islamic law.

Some of the key provisions related to Muslim wills under the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937 are as follows:

  • A Muslim can dispose of one-third of their property by way of a will.
  • The will can be made by a Muslim of sound mind who is not a minor.
  • The will must be in writing, signed by the testator, and attested by two witnesses.
  • The will can be revoked or altered at any time during the testator’s lifetime.
  • The property can be bequeathed to any person or institution, including a family member, friend, or charity.
  • In case of multiple wills, the latest will prevails.
  • The property not covered under the will shall be distributed among the legal heirs as per Islamic law.

It is important to note that any Muslim who dies intestate (without making a will) will have their property distributed among their legal heirs as per Islamic law. Therefore, making a will is an important step for any Muslim to ensure that their property is distributed as per their wishes, up to the permissible limit of one-third of their property.

In summary, a Muslim will is a legal document that enables a Muslim to dispose of their property as per their wishes, up to the permissible limit of one-third of their property. It is governed by the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act[1], 1937, and it is recommended that any Muslim who wishes to make a will should consult with a qualified lawyer to ensure that the will is legally valid and binding.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, the key differences between a Hindu Will and a Muslim Will in India are as follows:

  • Permissible limit: A Hindu can dispose of all of their property by way of a will, whereas a Muslim can dispose of only one-third of their property without the consent of their legal heirs.
  • Formalities: A Hindu will can be made orally or in writing, and it can be registered or unregistered. In contrast, a Muslim will must be in writing, signed by the testator, and attested by two witnesses.
  • Legal heirs: The Hindu Succession Act allows a Hindu to bequeath their property to anyone, including non-family members, while the Muslim Personal Law requires that at least two-thirds of a Muslim’s property be distributed among their legal heirs as per Islamic law.

Therefore, it is important for Hindus and Muslims in India to understand the legal provisions and limitations related to wills in their respective religions, and to work and form the will in respect of the clauses mentioned under the religious laws of both religions, for the smooth execution of the wills when required.

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