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Meha Harish (Proprietor)     16 June 2014

Will by wife on assets in joint demat a/c

Mother made a will appointing her youngest son as sole benefeciery of all her assets in June'08. She died in Oct'08. Probate filed in Oct'13. Other 2 siblings, Elder son and daughter, alongwith their father are contesting the probate on following grounds:

  1. As per Family Doctors certificate attached to the registered will she was patient of Advance Cancer and bedridden. Registrar was called home for registration purpose. WILL was executed under suspicious and fraudulant circumstances. Family Doctor has put initials below her Thumb impression in all pages.
  2. Younger son,age 45, the beneficiery, had no source of income, his IT returns show NIL income, and was living on hand outs from  his Mama and father who were also footing his mothers medical and living expenses. The mother was living with younger son who was taking care of her. Therefore the younger son either coersed into signing the WILL or taken her Thumb impression while she was unconsience / sleeping under heavy dose of medication. One witness is younger sons sister-in law and other his personal freind.
  3. Normally, she would sign in English, but on the registered will, there is no signature but only thumb impression.
  4. Other siblings were not aware about the WILL at all till probate notice was served on them.
  5. The details of movable & immovable assets not mentioned in the WILL. It only states that her younger son Mr.... is sole executrix and she bequeths all immovable & movable properties to him.
  6. The S/B & Demat a/c is in joint name with husband (1st name) and all funds invested by husband. Wife had no income and was simple house wife. Younger son claims 50% of these assets.
  7. Flat is in joint name with husband who is alive (age 85 years).
  8. Another flat in joint name with brother & daughter. This flat occupied by younger son. Claims his Mothers share. Can husband claim his wife's share.
  9. Probate filed after 5 years of death on grounds that original WILL was misplaced. Other siblings claim it is out of Limitation period.
  10. Can the Father make a will for all these assets.
  11. Can he deny any part to his younger son in his WILL.

Please advise. 




 1 Replies

Dr. MPS RAMANI Ph.D.[Tech.] (Scientist/Engineer)     28 June 2014

The lady died in 2008. But the probate notice of the will was served after 5 years. Those who are now contesting the will would have known when the testator died and also the property held in her name. Certainly the testator's husband (the father) would have had the knowledge. Why were they silent all these years? The bank accounts were in the joint names of husband and wife. On what bases were the accounts held, jointly, either or survivor or first name only. (Whose name was the first name?) After the death of his wife, what did the husband do? Did he get the name of his wife deleted and hold the account in his own name only? If he had taken prompt action with regard to the accounts it would be difficult to change them.

It appears no action was taken by other claimants so far with regard to the immovable properties. Has the testator given any reason for bequeathing all the assets to her one son only? Has she mentioned any statement regarding how she acquired the property and how she has the absolute right to will it as she pleased? Has the doctor certified that the testator was in full control of her faculties and was  in a position to understand what she was doing?  As the will is registered in the presence of the  Registrar, it is difficult to contest the date or the genuineness of the will. The law of limitation would apply to both sides, particularly if any irreversible actions have been taken.

Finally only the court can decide.

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