NRI needs help with Will & Probate


Hi,

I was born in India & went to USA  for higher studies & acquired green card in 1980 but was still Indian Citizen.

In 1986, 1987 & 1988 I sent money by 9 drafts in varying amounts to my brother for building a house & he did in 1988. He wanted to put his name on the house but my mother, grandmother & 2 sisters objected because it was my money so  he put the name of my mother & grandmother on the house. I was still Indian citizen when all this happened. Since 1988 my Mother, grandmother, sister & my brother were living in the house & whenever I visited India, I did too.

The house is  in Gujarat.

In 1992 I became US citizen.

My mother & grandmother died in 2005. They did leave a Registered will & me as the sole inheritant of the house. The will also states clearly that the house was built with my money. My two sisters have signed as witness in the will & they support me fully & don’t want any part of the house.

My brother has been living in the house for 22 years & doesn’t want to give the procession of the house to me. He is now betraying me claiming that the money I sent him was a gift because he had manipulated me in writing 2 drafts ( checks ) as gift out of 9 drafts in total. The 7 drafts do not have any gift certificates.

Thus, I am now a US citizen with a Registered will that says that I am the sole inheritant. I have not taken any action as far as the will is concerned.

First, is there a statute of limitation for executing a will ? if not,

How do I use this will to get the custody of the house ?  

I read that a Probate is not mandatory for a will & property in Gujarat & if that is the case how do I transfer this property in my name & get him out of the house ?

If I apply for a probate & if he objects which is a certainty, what kind of Legal battle am I looking at & do I have to stay in India while probate procedure is going on ?

How long does it take to get a probate ?

Please advice.

Thank You.

Ram

 
Reply   
 

Dear Ram,

I am not a lowyer, but have some knowledge on the subject.

The housew belongs to you, unconditionally. If you have the original registration documents of the house (which will be in name of your mother) and the original copy of the registered will, there is no need to transfer this property in your name. Set of above two documents is the final proof of ownership. There cannot be a "Registery" in your name, since the "Registry" is between a seller and buyer. Here, the Registered Will is a substitute for the "Registry".

 

You must apply for probate. Your brother cannot (in fact no one can) dispute the contents of the will. He can only dispute the genuinity of the Will. He can only try to prove that the will is not genuine. If you have the witnesses of the will on your side, who are willing to go to court and certify that the will was signed by your mother, in their presence, and your mother was in sound mind, you will get the Probate. Since this propertty did not belong to your grand parents, your parents have a right to make a will in favor of any one.

 

No need ot worry. Once you have the probate with you, he will have ot vacate the house. He will be illegal occupant.

 

If any questions, you can write to me nkgeicher@hotmail.com

I know above, since I went through a similar situaiton, although there was no one to contest the probate.

 
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