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Does a Muslim widow (with one daughter) have a valid claim to her husband’s father's property (30 acres of agricultural land in India) in cases where her husband dies first, then her father-in-law dies?

The property was in her father-in-law's name (there is no wasiyat and will) but following his death it is now registered to his two surviving sons (ie her husband's brothers) who have told her that "you and your daughter will not get any property according to Islamic law in India" and "the Islamic scholars told you and your daughter have no rights to claims the property."

On what basis can they say this is according to Islamic law? The widow is 84 years old and has spent her life in this family until now.

Should the widow and her daughter seek legal advice?

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  • Who is the "second husband father"? The widow's Father-in-law? or someone else? And who are the "brothers" bothers to - the husband, his father, the widow or someone else? – Rock Ape Feb 13 at 15:35
  • Also... who has actually died? The husband or his father? And... if both have died, who went first? And... have/has a deceased person left a current wasiyat? And... which State is the ag-land? – Rock Ape Feb 13 at 16:39
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    Widow father in law property and widow father in law have 3 children's one is her husband and another two who is saying that property you and your daughter will not get any property. @Rock Ape – user6254696 Feb 13 at 16:58
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    Widow husband died first and widow father in law died second now both died but the relation widow father in law died first means in this case widow will get father in law property according to islamic scholors. If father in law died second that's why widow will not claim they are telling. @Rock Ape – user6254696 Feb 13 at 17:05
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+100

I think it is not possible to answer the question as is, but this document from the Indian courts lays out the relevant legal variables. A major split is between Sharers and Residuaries: a Sharers are all related by blood. A secondary split relates to testate vs. intestate succession (was there a will?). There are also special rules for West Bengal, Chennai and Bombay. A widow is generally entitled to a share of her husband's property, but if the husband dies before his father, the husband does not have his father's property. But then, if a Muslim marries under the Special Marriage Act, 1954, they are not treated legally as Muslim for purposes of inheritance.

All told, it is most likely that the widow has no legal claim on the property, but still a person should engage an attorney who can assess the particulars of the case.

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  • Anyhow, the general rule for Law SE is that you cannot ask for specific legal advice, but you can ask general questions e.g. what is the law of inheritance in India. The relevant state is where the deceased resided, not a potential beneficiary. Assuming that everybody lives in Karnataka, then you're not in a state with complicating laws (as far as I can tell). The attorney will for example ask about a will. This is a religious marriage, not a civil one? – user6726 Feb 13 at 20:59
  • Widow husband and widow belongs to islam religion and both are indians and Special Marriage Act, 1954 not applicable to them. @user6726 – user6254696 Feb 13 at 21:05
  • Ok I deleted above comments, I meet one experience lawyer he told daughter can claims half of the son but widow not have any son I don't know what bases he told me that is confusing me. @user6726 – user6254696 Feb 13 at 21:16
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The scholars may be correct.

The husband died first, so his widow and daughter inherit their % share from his estate. The father-in-law then died, and unless she is a beneficiary in his wasiyat, the widow is not one of his heirs so she is not eligible to inherit.

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    Indian ag-land inheritance laws are State specific according to the various Land Ceiling Laws (and notoriously biased against women) so the widow should consider seeing a lawyer who specialises in both inheritance and women's advocacy – Rock Ape Feb 13 at 17:34
  • We have to go legal way or not please suggest. @Rock Ape – user6254696 Feb 13 at 17:47
  • The widow and her daughter should consider seeing a lawyer who specialises in both inheritance and women's advocacy – Rock Ape Feb 13 at 17:52
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    What's wrong with engaging this experienced lawyer? He is, or should be, in a far better position to advise you if he is experienced in the nuances of muslim inheritance laws of Karnataka. – Rock Ape Feb 16 at 10:59
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    @user6254696 I don't thay there is a claim but local laws could contain something that might give rise to such a claim but they might just as well not contain such a clause. consult your lawyer friend. – Trish Feb 16 at 14:10

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