Guide to Legal Heir Certificate in Tamil Nadu

by  Adv. Praneeth GN  




7 mins


Navigating Legal Heirship in Tamil Nadu

Navigating the complexities surrounding the legal heir certificate can be challenging. This article aims to provide a detailed understanding of various aspects related to the Legal Heir Certificate in Tamil Nadu.

What is a Legal Heir Certificate?

A Legal Heir Certificate is a crucial document that establishes the relationship between the deceased and their legal heirs. It is necessary to transfer the ownership of the deceased’s assets, such as property, bank accounts, and other financial assets, to their legal heirs.

Uses of a Legal Heir Certificate in Tamil Nadu

The Legal Heir Certificate is used for several purposes:

  • Transferring properties and assets of the deceased to their successors.
  • Claiming insurance and other financial benefits.
  • Sanctioning and processing the family pension of a deceased employee.
  • Receiving government dues like provident fund, gratuity, etc.
  • Claiming salary arrears of deceased government employees.
  • Employment considerations based on compassionate appointments.

Navigating the complexities of Legal Heir Certificates? Let our expert legal team guide you through every step. From document preparation to successful submission, we're here to simplify the process for you. Connect with us today for hassle-free legal assistance.

Who Can Apply For A Legal Heir Certificate in Tamil Nadu?

The following individuals are generally recognized as legal heirs (class I heirs):

  • Spouse of the deceased.
  • Children of the deceased (including adopted children).
  • Parents of the deceased.

In the absence of Class I heirs, Class II heirs can claim the property.

Class II heirs for a Hindu man according to Hindu Succession Law 

  • Grandchildren of the deceased
  • Great-grandchildren of the deceased
  • Siblings of the deceased
  • Other relatives of the deceased

People Also Read: Legal Heir Certificate for OCI Holders

Procedure to Obtain a Legal Heir Certificate in Tamil Nadu

  1. Application Submission: The legal heir must approach the district court or the Taluk office and submit a duly filled application form.
  2. Document Attachment: Attach necessary documents, including the death certificate, identity proofs, and address proofs of the legal heirs and the deceased.
  3. Verification Process: The application undergoes a verification process, which may include local inquiries.
  4. Certificate Issuance: Upon successful verification, the Legal Heir Certificate is issued.

While this guide provides a comprehensive overview of Legal Heir Certificates in India, including their uses, application process, and necessary documentation, you might be specifically interested in the detailed steps involved in obtaining this certificate.

For a focused and step-by-step guide on this process, we recommend reading our article How to Obtain a Legal Heir Certificate in India. This resource offers practical insights and expert tips to navigate the application procedure efficiently, making it an invaluable resource for those seeking to acquire a Legal Heir Certificate.

Required Documents For A Legal Heirship Certificate in Tamil Nadu

  • Signed application form in the prescribed format.
  • Identity and address proof of the applicant. ( Voter ID/ Aadhar Card/Driving Licence/Passport or any other government-issued identity card)
  • Address proof of the deceased. (Any valid identity proof or telephone/mobile bill, gas bill, bank passbook with the name and address of the deceased)
  • Death certificate of the deceased. (Original to be produced)
  • Date of birth proof of all legal heirs. (Birth certificate, School Transfer/Leaving Certificate, PAN Card, Passport, etc)
  • A self-undertaking affidavit on ₹20 non-judicial stamp paper.

Ensure your loved one's assets are rightfully transferred. Our specialized legal services in obtaining Legal Heir Certificates provide you with the peace of mind and legal clarity you need. Trust us to safeguard your family's future. Contact us for dedicated support.

Top Lawyers in Tamil Nadu for Legal Heir Certificate

1) Advocate Satish Bhan
Exp.: 14+ Years
Location: Chennai
Practice Area & Skills: Property & Civil matters

2) Advocate Suraj Mutnal
Exp.: 10+ Years
Location: Coimbatore
Practice Area & Skills: Property & Family matters

3) Advocate Manjunath Gowda
Exp.: 13+ Years
Location: Salem
Practice Area & Skills: Property & Criminal matters

4) Advocate Oshi Mishra
Exp.: 7+ Years
Location: Erode
Practice Area & Skills: Property & Consumer matters

5) Advocate Shivamuthi AR
Exp.: 11+ Years
Location: Madurai
Practice Area & Skills: Property, Criminal, Divorce & Consumer matters

List of Areas Covered for Legal Heir Certificate in Tamil Nadu


Difference Between Legal Heir Certificate and Succession Certificate

  • Purpose: A Legal Heir Certificate is used for transferring movable assets and claiming benefits, while a Succession Certificate is required for inheriting immovable property and movable assets under various property laws.
  • Issuing Authority: The Tahsildar of the district issues Legal Heir Certificates, whereas courts issue Succession Certificates.
  • Fees: The fee for a Legal Heir Certificate is nominal, while a Succession Certificate may involve a fee based on the property’s value.

Difference between  Surviving Member Certificate and  Legal Heir Certificate

A surviving member certificate is a document that certifies the surviving members of a family in case of the death of the head of the family. It is issued by the revenue department of the district where the deceased person resided. A legal heir certificate, on the other hand, certifies the legal heirs of a deceased person. The legal heir certificate is required to claim the assets and properties left behind by the deceased.

For detailed information specifically tailored to Non-Resident Indians, be sure to read our focused guide on the Legal Heir Certificate for NRIs in India.

Legal Heirs To File Income Tax Returns For Deceased

Legal heirs in India are obligated to file Income Tax Returns (ITR) for the deceased as per the Income Tax Laws. This filing should be done for the year in which the deceased passed away. While legal heirs have rights to the deceased’s income, they must file the deceased’s income tax return separately and cannot merge it with their own. 

The process of filing ITR for the deceased involves the legal heirs registering as representatives on the income tax e-filing website and submitting the required documents to complete the filing process. This ensures that the deceased’s tax obligations are appropriately fulfilled by their legal successors.

People Also Read: Step-by-Step Detailed Guide for Legal Heirs on Filing ITR for the Deceased

Filing Income Tax Returns (ITR) for a Deceased Individual by a Legal Heir

Legal heirs are responsible for filing the Income Tax Returns (ITR) and settling the calculated tax on behalf of a deceased individual. Here’s how to proceed with this process:

  1. Visit the official income tax e-filing website.
  2. If you already have an account, log in with your credentials. If you’re a new user, select ‘Register Yourself’ and complete the registration by providing all necessary details.
  3. Once logged in, navigate to the ‘My Account’ section.
  4. In the ‘Request Type’ section, choose ‘New Request’ from the options available in the drop-down menu.
  5. In the section to add/register as a representative, select ‘Register Yourself’ on behalf of another person.
  6. Choose ‘Estate of the Deceased’ from the options in the ‘Category to Register’ section.
  7. Upon selecting ‘Proceed,’ you will be directed to a new page.
  8. Enter all pertinent details such as the Permanent Account Number (PAN) of the deceased, the name of the estate, and the date of death.
  9. Prepare a zip file containing essential documents like a self-attested copy of the legal heir’s PAN card, the deceased’s PAN card, the death certificate, the legal heir certificate, or a notarized affidavit.
  10. Upload these documents and submit your request by clicking the ‘Submit’ button, which will then be reviewed by the e-Filing Administrator.

This process ensures that the legal heir can fulfill the tax obligations of the deceased individual in a structured and official manner.

Confused about the legal heirship process? Our experienced lawyers specialize in Legal Heir Certificates, offering personalized assistance to make your legal journey smooth and stress-free. Let's navigate the legalities together. Reach out for expert guidance.

Format of Legal Heir Certificate


Having fully satisfied myself with the right and title of the claimant(s), I recommend that the amount due to be paid to late Mr./Mrs. [Deceased Person’s Name] with respect to [Specify the context, e.g., pension, provident fund, etc.] may be paid to the person(s) mentioned below who are the only rightful heirs of the deceased employee.

  1. Name of Heir 1: Relationship – [Specify Relationship, e.g., Spouse, Son, Daughter]
  2. Name of Heir 2: Relationship – [Specify Relationship]
  3. Name of Heir 3: Relationship – [Specify Relationship]
  4. (Continue the list as per the number of legal heirs)

[Your Name]
Head of the Department/Office
Date: [Date of Issuance]
Department of: [Name of the Department/Organization]

Legal Heir Certificate in Other States

Legal Heir Certificate in Maharashtra, Legal Heir Certificate in Karnataka, Legal Heir Certificate in Gujarat, Legal Heir Certificate in Telangana, Legal Heir Certificate in Haryana, Legal Heir Certificate in Kerala, Legal Heir Certificate in Andhra Pradesh, Legal Heir Certificate in Uttar Pradesh

Frequently Asked Questions About Legal Heir Certificates

Q1. Can I apply for a Legal Heir Certificate online?
Ans1. Yes, in some regions of India, you can apply for a Legal Heir Certificate online through the e-portal of the respective district.

Q2. How long does it take to obtain a Legal Heir Certificate?
Ans2. It typically takes about 15 to 30 days to obtain a Legal Heir Certificate.

Q3. Is a married daughter a legal heir?
Ans3. Yes, both married and unmarried daughters are considered legal heirs and have the same rights as sons.

Q4. What if the deceased person has no immediate legal heirs?
Ans4. If the deceased person does not have immediate legal heirs like children, spouse, or parents, then grandchildren or siblings can be considered as legal heirs.

Q5. Can a person with a Legal Heir Certificate sell the deceased’s property?
Ans5. A person holding a Legal Heir Certificate alone cannot sell the deceased’s property. However, they can proceed with the sale after obtaining written consent and a No Objection Certificate from all other legal heirs.

Q6. Is it possible for a father to allocate his entire property to just one child?
Ans6. A father has the right to bequeath all his self-acquired property to a single child. However, when it comes to ancestral property, he cannot do so as all his children are entitled to an equal share.

Q7. Are legal heirs liable for any penalties incurred by the deceased?
Ans7. Legal heirs may indeed be responsible for any penalties that were applicable to the deceased individual.

Q8. What is the cost involved in acquiring a legal heir certificate?
Ans8. To obtain a legal heir certificate, a nominal fee involving a Rs. 2 stamp and Rs. 20 for stamp paper is required.

Q9. Whom should one contact to get a legal heir certificate?
Ans9. To procure a legal heir certificate, one should approach the Taluk Tehsildar, the local corporation/municipality office, or the district civil court in their area.

Q10. What are the classifications of legal heirs?
Ans10. Legal heirs are categorized into two types: Permanent legal heirs and temporary legal heirs.

Q11. Who are the rightful heirs to a father’s estate?
Ans11. The rightful heirs to a father’s property typically include his wife, children, and mother.

Q12. Who qualifies as a legal heir if the deceased has no immediate family?
Ans12. In the absence of immediate family members like parents, spouse, or children, the legal heirs are usually the deceased’s grandchildren. If there are no grandchildren, the siblings of the deceased become the legal heirs.

Q13. Who is authorized to apply for a death certificate?
Ans13. The application for a death certificate can be made by the head of the household for home deaths, the medical in-charge for hospital deaths, the jail in-charge for deaths in jail, and the local police station or village headman for unattended deaths.

Q14. How can I obtain a duplicate of my lost legal heir certificate?
Ans14. To get a duplicate legal heir certificate, present the death certificate at the issuing authority, provide details of the deceased and the certificate’s issuance date, and pay a nominal fee.

Q15. Does a second wife qualify as a legal heir?
Ans15. A second wife is considered a legal heir if the marriage is legally recognized under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, typically after the dissolution of the first marriage or the death of the first wife. Children from both marriages are considered legal heirs.

Q16. Are children born out of wedlock considered legal heirs?
Ans16. Yes, children born to parents who are not legally married or are born out of wedlock have the same rights to the deceased parent’s property as legitimate children and are thus legal heirs.

Q17. Can a holder of a legal heir certificate sell the deceased’s property?
Ans17. A legal heir certificate alone does not confer the right to sell the deceased’s property. It is primarily for claiming insurance and government dues. To sell the property, the holder must have a succession certificate or obtain written consent and a No Objection Certificate from all other legal heirs.

Don't let legal complexities slow you down. Contact us today and take the first step towards securing your family's future with ease and confidence.

Adv. Praneeth GN

Adv. Praneeth GN


4.8 | 85+ User Reviews

Praneeth GN is a legal consultant who prioritises ethical and professional conduct. He graduated with (B.A. and LL.B) from the K.L.E. Society Law College. With more than 8 years of experience in handling legal cases independently. He has the potential to understand and explain complicated legal words in simple terms to clients.

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