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Rights on wife gold ornaments after her death

(Querist) 05 January 2022 This query is : Resolved 
Hi Sir,

recently my wife got expired on may 11th 2020 due to covid, almost 8 years completed, now their parents asking me gold ornaments of my wife, I have no children, now they made complaint on me but my wife made some loan without asking me, and I am paying that loans of interest it's around 5 lakhs, I told my father in law regarding this but they are not listening, now I am thinking to file a complaint against father in law for harrassing me for gold ornaments

I need your valuable suggestions
According to hindu streedhan



Advocate Bhartesh goyal (Expert) 06 January 2022
As per sec 15 of Hindu Succession Act,if hindu married woman dies ,her property rights devolve to first her son,daughters and husband.in your case you have no children so gour wife's property( movable or immovable ) will be passed to you .Your father in law has no right over your wife's gold ornaments.
P. Venu (Expert) 06 January 2022
In my understanding, a different scenario emerges on reading the provisions of Section 15 as a whole -

15. General rules of succession in the case of female Hindus.―
(1) The property of a female Hindu dying intestate shall devolve according to the rules set out in section 16,―
(a) firstly, upon the sons and daughters (including the children of any pre-deceased son or
daughter) and the husband;
(b) secondly, upon the heirs of the husband;
(c) thirdly, upon the mother and father;
(d) fourthly, upon the heirs of the father; and
(e) lastly, upon the heirs of the mother.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1),―
(a) any property inherited by a female Hindu from her father or mother shall devolve, in the
absence of any son or daughter of the deceased (including the children of any pre-deceased son or daughter) not upon the other heirs referred in sub-section (1) in the order specified therein, but upon the heirs of the father; and
(b) any property inherited by a female Hindu from her husband or from her father-in-law shall devolve, in the absence of any son or daughter of the deceased (including the children of any pre-deceased son or daughter) not upon the other heirs referred to in sub-section (1) in the order specified therein, but upon the heirs of the husband.

Since there are no children, the provisions of sub-section (2) apply. And the ornaments she had received from her parents needs to be returned to them.
kavksatyanarayana (Expert) 06 January 2022
But you have not stated whether gold ornaments were received from her parents or from your side. So you have to follow (a) if from her parents or (b) if her husband's side of the above reply given by the learned expert Mr. P.Venu sir.
Veeru N (Querist) 07 January 2022
Sir, my wifes parents gave mangalsutra chain to my wife at the time of marriage,
kavksatyanarayana (Expert) 07 January 2022
So file a case against your father-in-law by consulting a local lawyer.
Dr J C Vashista (Expert) 08 January 2022
Re-check whether mangalsutra chain was given by bride's (your wife's) parents at the time of marriage
or
it was given by the bridegroom, since traditionally mangalsutra chain is given by bridegroom in Hindu marriages?
K Rajasekharan (Expert) 08 January 2022
Any piece of ornament the wife gets at the time of marriage, in the eye of Hindu Marriage Act, under its Section 27, can be treated as a property that belongs to both the spouses.

If the wife dies of natural death, the ornament will be the property of the husband under Section 15 (1) of the Hindu Succession Act, as they have no children in this case.

Even if the ornament is treated as a gift given to the bride by the parents before or at the time of marriage as per the facts, then also it belongs to her, and on her death, it will pass on to the husband in this particular case.

The Section 15 (2) will not come into application in this case, as the ornament in question here is not the property inherited by the wife.

In short the wife’s parents have no right to ask for the ornament.


P. Venu (Expert) 08 January 2022
Yes, thanks Learned expert Mr. Rajasekharan for correcting me. Provisions of Section 15(2) applies only in respect of property INHERITED and not otherwise. The ornaments received at the time of marriage is not inherited property. As such, the provisions of Section 15(1) apply and, in the instant case, devolves upon the husband of the deceased. It makes no difference in that the couple have no children.


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