10 Situations where you and your children lose legal right to inherit property

10 Situations where you and your children lose legal right to inherit property10 Instances where you / your children lose right to inherit property

Individuals would have earned good money and purchased various properties. In the absence of a will, legal heirs and family members would assume that they have legal rights to inherit properties. But do you know what that are several instances where you or your children lose legal rights to inherit properties? Understanding such instances can help to know your right upfront. In this article we would detail about 10 Instances where you or your children can lose legal rights to inherit property.

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What is inherited or ancestral property?

Under the Hindu law, the property can be self-acquired property or ancestral property (inherited property).

A property acquired by own resources is self-acquired property and if inherits from family members is an ancestral property or inherited property.

Inheritance refers to succession. Upon the death of the individual, the properties, titles, debts and obligations would go to legal heirs or family members.

In case of the death of an individual without a will, such property would be shared among the legal heirs / family members. One should understand property rights in India as per the succession laws applicable to the individual.

10 Situations where you and your children lose legal right to inherit property

As per the Hindu Succession Act, there are certain instances where an individual or their children would lose right to inherit property.

#1 – Individual converting to another religion

As per Hindu succession act, if a person converts to another religion, then the children born after such conversion would lose right to inherit properties of the Hindu family.

#2 – Individuals adopted by another family

Assume an individual is adopted by another family, then such adopted individual would lose right to inherit property of the biological family.

Example – Mr Hemachandra was born to parents Mr Sreenivas and Mrs. Ragini. However, he was adopted by another family Mr. Ravi and Mrs. Radha. Now, Mr Hemachandra would lose legal right for properties held by Mr. Sreenivas and Mrs. Ragini. However, he is entitled and legal heir of all properties of Mr Ravi and Mrs. Radha (adopted parents).

#3 – Convicted of murder

If any individual is convicted of the murder of the person from whom they are supposed to inherit property, then the individual and their children would lose legal right to inherit of the property of the person.

#4 – WILL can exclude an individual

Assume you or your children are legal heirs of the deceased person’s property. However, if the deceased person has written will and excluded your / your children’s names, then you would lose right to inherit property.

Example – Mr. Rajesh has 3 children. However he has written will and included 1st and 3rd child. Now 2nd child would lose right to inherit properties held by Mr. Rajesh.

#5 – You have relinquished your share

If an individual has voluntarily relinquished their share in the inherited property, then their children also would lose right to such property.

#6 – Separation happened with the agreement

If any of the legal heirs / family members separated with an agreement indicating they would not have rights in future on any of the family members’ properties, they would lose all legal rights for any of such properties.

#7 – Separated with Divorce

If a husband and wife are divorced. Assume husband died due to some health reason. Then wife would not have any legal rights on the properties of such deceased husband as divorce is completed.

Example – Mr. Vijay and Mrs. Padmasri has taken divorce 5 years back. Unfortunately Mr. Vijay has died in an accident now. Mrs. Padmasri would not have any right one  the properties held by Mr. Vijay now.

#8 – Losing rights as second wife

Second wife would not have any legal rights in the deceased husband’s property in case the first wife is not divorced or still alive.

If divorce is completed, second wife would have all legal rights of the husband.

If the first wife is already passed away, second wife would have all legal rights on the deceased husband properties.

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#9 – Inheritance of an individual on deceased wife’s property

In case of wife life time, she inherited property from parents, then husband can have legal right after the death of the wife. However, in wife life time she did not inherit any parents’ property, after the death of the wife, the husband cannot claim any share in wife’s parents’ properties.

#10 – Criminals lose right

The Hindu Succession Act says that individual who has proven guilty of serious crimes will not be allowed inherit property.

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Suresh KP


  1. I think in Point No. 4, one can write a will “only for self-acquired” property and not for “inherited” property. “Inherited” property devolves to all the members of the family as per Hindu Succession Act.

  2. #7 – Separated with Divorce – How about the child with the separated wife and wife has custody of child? Can the child make any claim after death of father?

    1. You posted difficult question.
      1) Child’s legal rights are not affected in case of ancestral properties of the father
      2) If father has self acquired property, it is up to to father. However in case of death and absence of will, child would have legal rights irrespective whether the child is with mother or father.

  3. The article is good and informative. However, disposal of inherited property also should have been touched upon. Suppose a childless woman inherits property from her husband. Can she write a will as per her wishes? Or are there any restrictions on that?

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