Succession Certificate and Letter of Administration in India

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Succession Certificate

In case a person dies intestate his estate has to be managed by someone to inherit and it can be done only by inheriting the authority by court process for which a succession certificate can be issued by a civil court to the legal heirs of a deceased. Formalities like realization of debts and securities, transferring of assets and to inherit debts to realize the debts and securities of the deceased can be completed by legal heirs only after grant of succession certificate. A beneficiary makes an application to a civil court and court may grant the certificate according to Succession Act, if it is satisfied.

How to apply for a Succession Certificate?


a-      A duly signed and verified application must be made to the civil court of competent jurisdiction.

b-     In the petition, details like petitioner’s name, name of legal heirs of deceased, relationship of the petitioner with deceased, right of petitioner, residences of relatives and family of deceased and details of death along with the death certificate debts and securities for which the succession certificate has to be obtained have to be mentioned.

2- Fee:

According to Schedule II of The Court Fees Act, 1870, certain amount is levied as court fee for this process. Stamp Duty may vary from state to state.


A newspaper notice for 45 days is issued by the court. Any person having problem with it can file objections. If the court doesn’t receive any objection, it issues succession certificate. This process takes five to seven months.

Documents required for obtaining Succession Certificate:

Below is the list of documents required for applying for the Succession Certificate:
(i) Death certificate
(ii) Pan Card of all the legal heirs .
(iii) Ration card of all the legal heirs.
(iv)-Prescribed application form by affixing a court fee stamp.

Letter of Administration

If someone dies interstate before administration of estate is entrusted to someone or when no executor is appointed under the will of deceased or when executor is appointed but he refuses to act, then Letters of administration may be issued to entitle the administrator to all rights required for effective administration of the estate of deceased. An application is to be filed to a civil court of competent jurisdiction which will then appoint the Administrator to dispose off the debts. 

How to apply for Letter of Administration


a-      Form for the grant of Letters of Administration is in Schedule VII of Indian Succession Act, 1925, contains the form for grant of Letters of Administration. This application can be made 14 days after the death. The court grants the letter to beneficiary on being satisfied and if no one applies it may be granted to the creditor of the deceased.

b-     Will has to be duly executed and petitioner’s name must be there. Details like time of death, amounts of assets have to be mentioned.

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