Exclusion – Part 2

Supposing an individual ‘Z’ (either male or female) has a son ‘P’ and two daughters ‘Q’ and ‘R’. ‘P’ is married and is blessed with daughters only. Whether ‘Q’ and ‘R’ are married with or without children is immaterial because it makes no difference. Their children are non-heirs.

a) ‘P’ dies before ‘Z’. When ‘Z’ passes on, ‘Q’ and ‘R’ will exclude the grandchildren.
b) If ‘P’ has at least a son; in the same circumstance, ‘Q’ and ‘R’ will NOT exclude the grandchildren. However, they (the grandchildren) will not be entitled to the share of the estate their father (‘P’) should have gotten. A new sharing formula is created for them. Hence,

Rule 3: Two or more daughters exclude strictly granddaughters.
Rule 4: Two or more daughters do not exclude grandchildren comprising of at least a grandson.

This pair of rules has a wide range of application.
1) Inheritance of second and third generation heirs. The children of the deceased are the first generation heirs; his/her grandchildren are the second generation heirs, while his/her great-grandchildren are the third generation heirs. Let’s say a deceased ‘W’ (male or female) has a son ‘K’ who in turn begets a son ‘L’ and two daughters ‘M’ and ‘N’. ‘L’ grew up, got married and is blessed with five (5) daughters. In this case,
‘K’ = first generation heir of ‘W’.
‘L’, ‘M’ and ‘N’ = second generation heirs of ‘W’.
Five daughters = third generation heirs of ‘W’.

If son ‘K’ and grandson ‘L’ pass on before ‘W’, ‘M’ and ‘N’ the surviving second generation heirs will exclude all the 5 daughters because they are all female. Supposing there is at least a son among the third generation heirs, ‘M’ and ‘N’ cannot exclude them, rather a new sharing formula is created for them.

This is quite straight-forward. We can complicate it a bit. ‘W’ has three children. A son ‘A’ and two daughters ‘B’ and ‘C’. ‘A’ begets 2 sons ‘S’, ‘T’ and two daughters ‘U’, ‘V’. ‘B’ has two sons ‘X’ and ‘Y’. ‘C’ is blessed with a daughter ‘Z’. ‘S’ has 4 daughters, ‘T’ has 2 daughters, ‘U’ has a son and 2 daughters, ‘V’ has 2 sons, ‘X’ has a son and a daughter, ‘Y’ has 3 sons and ‘Z’ has a daughter. Confusing? Not really. Taking some moment to sketch the family tree will help.

a) When ‘W’ dies and the status-quo remains (i.e. no one died before him/her), ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ (the first generation heirs) will inherit from him/her. The second and third generation heirs will all be excluded due to the presence of son ‘A’.

b) If ‘A’ died before ‘W’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ will NOT exclude ‘S’, ‘T’, ‘U’ and ‘V’ because ‘S’ and ‘T’ are sons. Note that ‘X’, ‘Y’ and ‘Z’ are non-heirs (grandchildren through daughters).

c) In a situation whereby all the first generation heirs (‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’) as well as ‘S’ and ‘T’ are absent, ‘U’ and ‘V’ will exclude the daughters of ‘S’ and ‘T’ from inheriting from ‘W’ because only the six (6) of them are rightful heirs. Others are non-heirs.

d) Supposing ‘T’ has a son in addition to his 2 daughters, in the absence of ‘S’ and ‘T’ and the first generation heirs, ‘U’ and ‘V’ cannot exclude the seven rightful heirs of the third generation (i.e. 4 daughters of ‘S’ and a son and 2 daughters of ‘T’). The seven (7) of them will inherit from ‘W’. The presence of ‘T’s’ son will entitle not only his daughters but also all the daughters of ‘S’ to a share of ‘W’s’ estate.

2) Another application of this pair of rules (though in a modified form) is when full sisters are inheriting along with consanguine sisters. We recall that sisters’ children are non-heirs. So the possibilities are as follows:

Rule 5: One full sister does not exclude consanguine sister(s).
Rule 6: Two or more full sisters exclude strictly consanguine sisters.
Rule 7: Two or more full sisters do not exclude consanguine sisters if a consanguine brother is also present.

The slight modification is that both sisters (full and consanguine) are in the same generational level, unlike the previous situations whereby two or more females in one generation will exclude strictly female(s) in a generation lower than theirs.

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Your Questions, Our Answers

We have received a number of emails from those who visited this website or downloaded and read INHERITANCE IN ISLAM. Almost all of them were questions on either aspects of inheritance not covered in the book or clarifications needed regarding specific cases. Hence, we thought it wise to reproduce the emails so that others may benefit as well. As always, we welcome suggestions, criticisms and of course, more questions!

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