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Faraidh is that section of the Islamic Law that deals with the distribution of the estate of a deceased person among his heirs in accordance with Allah's decree in the Holy Quran and according to the hadith or tradition of the Messenger's Allah (S.A.W).

Hikmah (The Wisdom), Behind Faraidh

Faraidh is ordained in great detail by Allah in the Quran. The Muslims must abide by this rule of Allah in all circumstances. Allah has decided upon the rights of inheritance on the basis of the responsibilities of men and women. Allah has fairly and systematically made the choice of beneficiaries.

Under the Islamic social system, women are not obliged to work for a living. It is the responsibility of the male members of the families to earn a living and to provide for their womenfolk.

When a woman weds, she receives a maskahwin the quantum of which she herself determines. She has the absolute right to decide on the manner in which the maskahwin is to be used. The maskahwin is given to her by the man she marries.

Given the fact that women have the privilege of protection by men, it is clear that what has been decided as their share vis-a-vis the distribution of estate is equitable.

Muslim Estates on AMLA

Saving of distribution of Muslim estate by will

Nothing in this Act shall be held to prevent any Muslim person directing by his or her will that his or her estate and effects shall be distributed according to the Muslim law.

Disposition by will to be in accordance with Muslim law

  1. Notwithstanding anything in the provisions of the English law or in any other written law, no Muslim domiciled in Singapore shall, after 1st July 1968, dispose of his property by will except in accordance with the provisions of and subject to the restrictions imposed by the school of Muslim law professed by him.
  2. Nothing in this section shall affect:
    1. the provisions of the Wills Act (Cap. 352), other than section 3 thereof;
    2. the provisions of the Probate and Administration Act (Cap. 251); or
    3. the will of a Muslim dying before 1st July 1968.

Distribution of Muslim estate to be according to Muslim law

  1. In the case of any Muslim person domiciled in Singapore dying intestate, the estate and effects shall be distributed according to the Muslim law as modified, where applicable, by Malay custom.
  2. This section shall apply in cases where a person dies partly intestate as well as in cases where he dies wholly intestate.
  3. In the case of a Malay dying intestate, the court may make an order for the division of the harta sepencarian or jointly acquired property in such proportions as to the court seems fit.

Application for probate and letters of administration

In all applications for probate or letters of administration the affidavit supporting the application shall, in the case of a deceased Muslim, state the school of law (Mazhab) which the deceased professed in addition to the particulars required by any other written law.

Administration of husband’s estate

In granting letters of administration to the estate of a Muslim dying intestate and leaving a widow or widows, the court may if it thinks fit grant letters of administration to any other next-of-kin or person entitled to the estate of the deceased under the Muslim law, either to the exclusion of the widow or widows, or jointly with such widow or widows, or any one or more of such widows.

Administration of wife’s estate

  1. When any woman, being the wife of a Muslim, dies intestate leaving property of her own and leaving male children above the age of 21 years
      1. such male children shall be entitled to a grant of letters of administration to her estate and effects in preference to her husband;
      2. the husband shall be entitled next after such male children;
      3. after such male children and the husband, the daughters, father, mother, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, nephews and nieces of the intestate shall be entitled in the order above set out; and
      4. failing all the above, the next nearest of kin according to theMuslim law shall be entitled.
  2. Preference shall be given to male over female relationship of the same degree in the above cases.
  3. The children of the husband by other wives shall not
    1. be considered as next-of-kin to the deceased intestate wife; and
    2. by reason of such relationship, be entitled to a grant of letters of administration to her estate and effects.
  4. Nothing in this section shall affect the power given to the court by section 18 (3) (d) of the Probate and Administration Act (Cap. 251).

Will of married woman

Subject to section 111, Muslim married women may, with or without the concurrence of their husbands, by will dispose of their own property.

Property at marriage

  1. All the property belonging to a woman on her marriage, whether movable or immovable and however acquired, shall after marriage to a Muslim husband continue, in the absence of special written contract to the contrary, to be her own property.
  2. She may dispose of the same by deed or otherwise, with or without the concurrence of her husband.

Property of Muslim married woman

  1. The following shall be deemed to be the property of a Muslimmarried woman:
    1. wages and earnings acquired or gained by her during marriagein any employment, occupation or trade carried on by her and not by her husband;
    2. any money or other property acquired by her during marriage through the exercise of any skill or by way of inheritance legacy, gift, purchase or otherwise; and
    3. all savings from, and investments of, such wages, earnings and property
  2. Her receipt alone shall be a good discharge for such wages, earnings and property.
  3. She may dispose of the same by deed or otherwise and without the concurrence of her husband.

Probate Proceedings

One may appoint solicitors to make an application for the Grant Letters of Administration as the Administrator of the estate of the Deceased. To obtain the Grant Letters of Administration, the following steps must be taken:-

  1. Filing an application, by way of Ex-parte Orignating Summons to the Court for the Grant;
  2. Submitting the relevant estate duty documents for estate duty clearance; and
  3. Extracting the Grant.

For more information, please visit : http://statutes.agc.gov.sg