Islamic Laws

Inheritance by the husband and the wife

2778. If a woman dies without any children, 1/2 of her property is inherited by her husband, and the remaining 1/2 is given to her other heirs. If, she has children from that or another husband, her husband will get 1/4 of the estate, and the remaining part will be inherited by her other heirs.

2779. If a man dies childless, 1/4 of his estate will go to his wife, and the remaining part will be given to his other heirs. And if the man has children from that or another wife, the wife gets 1/8th of the estate, and the remaining part will be inherited by his other heirs. A wife does not inherit anything from the land of a house or a garden or a farm, or from any other land, nor does she inherit from the proceeds of such lands.
She does not also inherit from that which stands on that land, like the house and the trees, but she inherits from their proceeds. The same rule applies to the trees and crops and buildings standing on the land of a garden, and on agricultural land, or on any other lands.

2780. If the wife wishes to have any right of discretion over things from which she does not inherit (for example, the land of a residential house) she should obtain the permission of other heirs to do so. Also, it is not permissible for other heirs to have any right of disposal, without the permission of the wife,over those things from the proceeds of which she inherits (for example, the value of the buildings and trees).

2781. If one wishes to evaluate the buildings and the trees and other similar things, it should be calculated as assessors usually do, that is, by estimating its value as they stand, and not as objects uprooted or extirpated from the land. Or, they should be valued as unrented property remaining on the land, till they are destroyed or till they perish.

2782. The canals for the flow of water fall under the category of land, and the bricks etc, used for its construction fall under the category of building.

2783. If a deceased has more than one wives, and if he is childless, 1/4 of the estate will be divided equally among the wives, in the manner explained above, and if he has children, 1/8 of the estate will be divided equally among them. And the rule applies even if the husband may not have had sexual intercourse with some or all of them.
However, if he married a woman during a terminal illness, and did not have sexual intercourse with her, that woman will not inherit from him nor will she be entitled to Mahr.

2784. If a woman marries a man during her illness, and dies in that illness, her husband inherits from her even if he did not have sexual intercourse with her.

2785. If a woman is given revocable divorce, in the manner explained in the orders relating to 'divorce', and she dies during the waiting period of divorce (Iddah), her husband inherits from her. Also, if the husband dies during the period of that Iddah, the wife inherits from him. But, if one of them dies after the expiry of that period (Iddah) or during the period (Iddah) of irrevocable divorce, the other does not inherit from him/her.

2786. If a husband divorces his wife during his illness, and dies before the expiry of twelve lunar months, the wife inherits from him on the fulfilment of three conditions:

If she has not married another man during that period. And if she has married another man during that period, she will not inherit, though, as a precaution, a compromise should be reached (between the heirs and the wife).

If she had not sought divorce herself, of her own accord, irrespective of whether she paid her husband some consideration to obtain divorce or not. If she had herself asked for divorce, she does not inherit.

If the husband died during the illness in which he divorced her, as a result of that illness, or some other reason. If the husband recovers from that illness, and dies later owing to some other cause, the divorced wife will not inherit from him.

2787. The dress which a husband gives to his wife to wear, is to be treated as a part of his estate after his death, even if the wife may have worn it.