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Our lawyers will provide the Succession Certificate & keep you informed of all the updates.

Overview of Succession Certificate in India

When someone dies intestate (without a will), their assets are dispersed to their rightful heirs once the court confirms ownership legitimacy. The phrase "dying intestate" describes a situation in which a deceased person either did not leave a will or did so for an improper cause. This suggests that no effort has been taken to establish the legitimacy and authority of the departed person's successor.

It authorises the holder of the certificate to take on the obligations and securities of the decedent. According to provisions 380, 381 and 382 of the Indian Succession Act 1925, a succession holder may take ownership of the decedent's property as well as the debts owed.

What is the Purpose of a Succession Certificate?

A civil court judge of the competent jurisdiction may grant a succession certificate to the rightful heirs of a decedent who passes away intestate and leaves behind unclaimed property and debts. Death is deemed to have occurred intestate if there is no valid will left behind. The ability to negotiate, assign, and/or inherit the deceased's obligations and assets belong to the holder of a succession certificate.

Regardless of whether they are in debt or accountable for obligations relating to such securities, the certificate offers indemnification to all parties in regard to payments made to or dealings performed in good faith with the certificate holder. As a result, a succession certificate may be necessary in order to pay off the deceased's debts or securities. The claimant of the securities or obligations must be the beneficiary of the certificate.

Succession Certificate Eligibility

Those who fit the criteria for the lawful heir certificate include:

  • The deceased's wife.
  • The deceased person's child.
  • siblings and parents of the deceased

Required Documents for a Succession Certificate

  • A self-undertaking affidavit.
  • Verification of the applicant's identity is required.
  • Address verification for each legal heir.
  • Proof of the birthdate of each legal heir.
  • A duplicate of the death certificate for the deceased.
  • Death certificate for the deceased immediate legal heir.
  • Evidence of the deceased's home address.

How to Obtain a Succession Certificate?

A succession document is issued by the district judge of the relevant jurisdiction. To get a succession, a petition must be prepared and filed at the relevant district court. The place where the decedent's usual residence was at the time of his death would decide the district court's jurisdiction over a petition for a succession document. If no such location is known, the area where any deceased person's property may be discovered would be the appropriate jurisdiction.

Step 1: Submit a petition

Legal heirs who wish to assert ownership of the decedent's property must file a petition. This must be done correctly and filed after being confirmed in a civil court with appropriate jurisdiction. A copy of the death certificate must be submitted with the petition. A petition for succession must contain the following details.

  • The deceased's time of death.
  • The deceased's place of residence or details of their property at the time of death within the judge's jurisdiction.
  • Information about the family or any close relatives of the Petitioner.
  • The rights of the Petitioner.
  • A lack of obstacles to the certificate's issuance.

Step 2: Submit the fees.

According to the Court Fees Act of 1870, the court must take a specific percentage of the estate's value as payment. This sum shall be paid by the Petitioner in judicial stamps. For the succession, a fee equal to 3% of the property's total worth will be charged.

Step 3: Submit in the court.

The district judge will conduct a preliminary hearing on the petition submitted by the applicant or Petitioner. If the petition is approved, he will establish a date for the final hearing and serve notice of the hearing on whomever he considers necessary.

Step 4: Publication of a notice and deadline

A 45-day notice is published by the court in the neighbourhood publication. Anyone can report if they have an issue with the advertisement. The court will award the Petitioner a succession if there are no objections. This procedure could take 5-7 months to complete.

Step 5: Obtain the certificate.

After hearing from all sides, the judge will decide if the Petitioner is within his rights to request succession. If so, the applicant will receive the certificate from the court. If there are numerous petitions, the court might order a joint succession. For each asset, however, a single certificate will be produced.

Legal Heir vs. Succession

A legal heir certificate and a succession document are not the same; thus, it is important to grasp the differences.

Even while a legal heir of a deceased person may ask for a succession document to transfer electricity or telephone connections, bank accounts, and other assets, this is distinct from a legal heir certificate that is given to authorise family pensions or transfer moveable and immovable assets.


Succession Certificate

Legal Heir Certificate


Obtaining authority to take possession of the deceased's debts and assets in the absence of a will.


To prove your rightful inheritance from the deceased's estate.



The debts and securities requested, as well as the applicant's connection to the dead.


A list of the deceased's legitimate heirs.



The possession of a Succession document does not assure its bearer of being the eventual recipient of the estate.


The estate may be inherited by the holder of a legitimate heir certificate.


Issued by

Judge of the district court.

Tehsildars or the municipality.

Cost of a Succession Certificate

The Petitioner for the succession certificate shall pay the court a fee equal to a specified percentage of the value of the asset. Prior to filing the petition, the Petitioner must pay the cost of the succession certificate using judicial stamp papers in an amount adequate to cover the charges. After being typed and attested, the succession certificate is then provided to the Petitioner.

Frequently Asked Questions

A succession certificate frequently contains details on the deceased, the legal heir designated, the relationship between the deceased and the heir, a list of debts and assets, a grant of power, details regarding the deceased's death, and a declaration of an intestate death.

To create a legal heir certificate, you need a stamp that costs two cents and stamp paper that costs twenty cents. Between 2 and 3 percent of the total property worth will be required to pay for the succession certificate.

To get a succession certificate, a petition must be written and delivered to the relevant district court. The place of the decedent's residence at the time of his death is the appropriate jurisdiction of the district court for submitting a petition to request a succession certificate.

The court will notify all legal heirs and close relatives of the filing of the application for a succession certificate so that they have the chance to object if they have any reservations about the certificate's granting in the applicant's favour.

A succession certificate is not the only document that may be obtained to prove an inheritance or make it easier to transfer assets from the deceased; others include nominations, a death certificate, and legal heirship certificates. It is easier to obtain these documents.

A legal heir certificate is given to identify the beneficiaries of the testator, whereas a succession certificate is supplied to establish the legitimacy and legality of the beneficiaries and to grant them rights related to the testator's assets and securities.

Yes, in accordance with the Schedule to the Indian Succession Act of 1925, the class I legal heirs for his inheritance would include your mother (his wife or widow), you and your siblings (if any), your father's mother (if alive), widows, and children of your predeceased siblings (if any), among other people.

The municipal or tehsildars provide legal heir certificates, which are distributed in 20 days. The next legal heir who is closely related to the dead, such as his or her husband, son, daughter, or mother, may then apply for the successor certificate in the event of the death of a family member.

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