Tahsildars can issue certificateto Class II legal heirs too: HC

Tahsildars can issue legal heirship certificates to Class II legal heirs, such as brothers and sisters, also if the deceased had remained unmarried during his/her lifetime and died without any issues besides having lost his/her parents as well as all other Class I legal heirs, the Madras High Court Bench here has held.

Justice V. Bharathidasan held so while disposing of a writ petition filed by the brother of a bachelor who died on November 24 last without leaving behind any Class I legal heir. The petitioner, Subburaj, was aggrieved over Madurai South Tahsildar’s stand that he was empowered to issue legal heir certificate only to Class I heirs.

According to the petitioner, his brother Balakrishnan had lived with him and three other brothers and sisters until his death since he remained unmarried. However, when all siblings filed an application together to declare them as the legal heirs of the deceased, the Tahsildar expressed helplessness and asked them to approach a civil court.

In a counter affidavit to the writ petition too, the Tahsildar claimed that as per instructions issued by the State government through a letter from the Revenue Department on November 28, 1991, Tahsildars were empowered to issue legal heirship certificates only to direct heirs such as wife, children and so on and not to Class II legal heirs.

However, after going through the contents of the government letter, the judge said that Tahsildars had been asked to desist from issuing legal heirship certificate only in case of four contingencies which included cases where an issueless deceased had brought up other children, a partition dispute was on between children born through different spouses and so on.

“Since the petitioner’s case does not fall under any one of the above categories, the respondent/Tahsildar is directed to consider his application and pass orders, after conducting enquiry and verifying whether any other legal heirs are available for the deceased, within a period of 12 weeks from the date of receipt of a copy of this order,” the judge said.

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Printable version | Sep 16, 2021 12:48:52 PM |

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