The Heirs

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The heirs are 9 types of male relatives and 6 types of female relatives receiving different shares of heritage according to the status of the deceased and his relationship with the heirs as discussed in the article.

The heirs

Heirs may be males or females. There are nine types of male relatives:

  • Son.
  • Grandson and lower male grandchildren.
  • Father.
  • Grandfather and higher male grandparents.[1]
  • Brother or half-brother
  • Nephew who is the son of a half-brother who has a different mother. If the deceased has the same
    Mother then his nephew does not inherit.
  • Paternal uncle.
  • Son of a paternal uncle who is a full brother of the deceased’s father or a half-brother born to the same father.
  • Husband,

:as Allah says

‘You shall inherit one half of what your wives leave behind’ (4:12)

Similarly, there are six types of female heirs:

  • Daughter.
  • Granddaughter who is the daughter of a son.
  • Mother.
  • Grandmother.
  • Sister or half-sister.
  • Wife,

:as Allah says

‘They (i.e. your wives) shall inherit one quarter of what you leave behind’
(4:12)

Types of heirs according to their inheritance

  • Those who inherit assigned shares, known as fard: There are seven types of these heirs: husband, wife, the two grandmothers, mother and her two sons, i.e. the full and the half brothers of the deceased.
  • The heirs who do not have assigned shares. There are 10 of these, known as ta’sib: son, grandson, full brother and his son; half-brother from the same father and his son; full paternal uncle and his son; paternal uncle from the same father and his son.
  • Heirs who inherit as fard in one capacity and ta’sib in another, combining both. These are the father and the grandfather.
  • Heirs who inherit as fard in one capacity and ta’sib in another but do not combine both. These are the ones who jointly inherit one half of the estate, except the deceased’s husband, and the ones who jointly inherit a share of two-thirds.
Across Europe, the practice of Islamic family law is under pressure
The Heirs

Altogether, there are 21 kinds of relatives who may be heirs with assigned shares. The assigned shares for them differ according to the type of the relationship with the deceased and the presence or absence of other heirs, and may be one-half, one-quarter, one-eighth, two-thirds, one-third and one-sixth.

READ MORE: 5 Duas For Wealth You Should Recite Daily


One: Five kinds of heirs may take a share of one-half

  • The husband, when his deceased wife has no male or female offspring by that marriage or an earlier one.
  • The deceased’s daughter, when she has no siblings, male or female, who are also heirs of the deceased.
  • The deceased’s son’s daughter, when she is the only heir.
  • The deceased’s full brother, when he has no siblings to share with him and the deceased has neither offspring nor parents or grandparents.
  • The deceased’s half sister born to his father, when she has no siblings to inherit with her, and the deceased has neither offspring nor parents or grandparents, nor a full brother or a full sister.

Two: Two kinds of heirs may take a share of one-quarter

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  • The husband, when his deceased wife has another heir who is a son, a daughter or a grandchild.
  • The wife, when her deceased husband has no offspring to inherit from him.

Three: Heirs who take a share of one-eighth

  • This applies to the deceased’s wife, or wives, when her husband has offspring to inherit from him.[2]

Four: Four kinds of heirs together take a share of two-thirds

  • The deceased’s daughters, when their father has no son to share with them. Whether there are two daughters or more, they will share equally two-thirds of the deceased’s estate.
  • The deceased’s son’s daughters, when the deceased has neither children nor a grandson. If there are two or more such granddaughters, they equally share two-thirds of the deceased’s estate.
  • The deceased’s full sisters, when there are two or more of them and they have no full brother to share with them, and the deceased has no offspring to inherit from him.
  • The deceased’s half-sisters born to his father, when there are two or more of them and they have no brother to share with them, and the deceased has no offspring, full brothers or full sisters to inherit from him.

Five: Two kinds of heirs inherit a share of one-third

  • The deceased’s mother, when the deceased has no offspring and no group of siblings to inherit from him.
  • Half brothers born to the deceased’s mother, when the deceased has neither offspring nor parents or grandparents to inherit from him.

Six: Seven kinds of heirs take a share of one-sixth

  • The deceased’s father, when the deceased has children or grandchildren.
  • The deceased’s grandfather, when the deceased has children or grandchildren.
  • The deceased’s mother, when the deceased has offspring, and also when the deceased has no offspring but has siblings.
  • The deceased’s grandmother, when the deceased’s mother has already died.
  • The deceased’s son’s daughter, when she has no brother to inherit with her, and when the deceased has no higher offspring other than an heir who is entitled to a share of one-half. This granddaughter takes a share of one-sixth only when there is another heir inheriting one-half.
  • The deceased’s half sister born to his father, when she has no brother to inherit with her, but the deceased must have a full sister who takes a share of one-half.
  • The deceased’s half brother or half sister born to his mother, when a) the deceased has no offspring to inherit from him; b) the deceased has no male ancestors; and c) there is only one half brother or one half sister.

Ta’sib means the presence of heirs known as the ‘asabah, who inherit but have no pre-determined shares. If there is only one of them, and no heirs with assigned shares, that single heir takes all the property. If the single ‘asabah heir is joined by heirs who have assigned shares, he takes what remains after the other heirs take their assigned shares.


:The Prophet (peace be upon him) says

‘Give the assigned shares to the heirs entitled to them and what remains goes to the closest male’

Related by al-Bukhari, hadith No. 6,737; Muslim, hadith No. 1,615


There are three types of ‘asabah

  • The person himself is ‘asabah.
  • The person becomes ‘asabah because of the presence of another.
  • Tthe person becomes ‘asabah when joined with another.

Exclusion

This refers to the prevention of an heir from taking all or part of his or her share because of the presence of another who has a stronger claim. There are two types of exclusion:

  • A cause that prevents inheritance: There are three situations where this type of exclusion might apply, as we have noted: being a slave, killing the deceased and following a religion other than Islam. If any of these causes applies to an heir, it excludes that heir from inheriting. It is as though he or she did not exist, no matter what relationship he or she had with the deceased.
  • Exclusion of personnel: The most common form of exclusion, which works in two ways: a) Total exclusion, which means that the heir is disqualified and receives nothing. It may apply to any heir except six: father, mother, husband, wife, son and daughter; b) Partial exclusion, which means reducing the heir’s share.

References
i.e. great-grandchildren, etc.

Needless to say, the same rules apply if the deceased is a man or a woman. When we say ‘no offspring to inherit from him’ we mean ‘from him or her’.


Source: Islamicfiqh.net

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