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We are three brothers and two sisters. My elder sister was married on 3.8.1989, and has one son.  Another sister was married on 5.11.1995, and has no issues. We three brothers are living together as joint family in an ancestral house and have inherited ancestral property of our grandfather. Our parents have expired. Now my sisters are demanding shares in ancestral property including the house and have threatened to file a partition suit.  As we would like to settle the issue amicably, please advise us.

- by Ramamurthy, Kollagal

Earlier, the daughters had no rights in Co-parcenery property that is joint family property as per Hindu Succession Act 1956; later on various states amended the Hindu succession act conferring equal rights to daughters.

Karnataka state has amended Section 6 of the Hindu Succession Act which came into force from 30th July 1994. Section 6A of the Act, provides equal rights to daughters and they are entitled to equal share. But, the amendment clearly states that the provisions of the amendment do not apply to daughters married prior to the commencement of Hindu Succession (Karnataka amendment) Act 1990.

In the light of the above facts your elder sister, who was married on 3.8.1989 is not entitled to any share in joint family property but your younger sister who was married on 5.11.1995 is entitled to equal share. Another interesting factor is your ancestral dwelling house where all the three brothers are said to be residing and according to section 23 of Hindu succession Act, the female heir cannot force partition of such house until the male members opt for partition. As such your younger sister cannot force the partition of ancestral dwelling house.

What I have dealt above is the legal position. But since you are for amicable settlement all the brothers and younger sister may voluntarily give some part of the property to the elder sister to maintain cordial family relationship.

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These are all the legal questions answered by Advocate S.Selvakumar in various magazines, in various occasion including realestate reporter monthly.