Differentiate the Property Possessed by Joint Hindu Family Members Under Hindu Law

Joint Hindu Family or Hindu Undivided Family is difficultly seemed among nowadays. In the case of Surjit Lal Chhabra 101 ITR 776 SC, Joint Hindu Family [Known as JHF in blog] Consists of persons lineally descended from a common ancestor and includes their wives and unmarried daughters. Those lineally Descended are Grandfather, Grandmother, Father, Mother, Uncle, Aunt, Grand Son, Grand Daughter, Adoptive Child, Widow and Widow Married Daughter. Fundamental Features of this kind of family is their Intention to live jointly, which is can be based on food, worship, and usually support. In Joint Hindu Family no outsider is considered as a member of JHF except by Adoption or by Marriage to male member. Joint Hindu Family is neither a Corporation not a Juristic Person.

Within JHF there is another unit known as coparcenary. It is a nano point in JHF. It consists of male members only. According to Hindu Ancient Law, there are two types of Property namely Hindu Coparcenery Property and Self Acquired Property.

Members or coparceners are counted up to 4 generations.

  1. Fathers, Fathers, Father [great grand father]
  2. Fathers, Father [Grandfather]
  3. Father
  4. Person
  5. Son
  6. Sons, son [grand son]
  7. Sons, Sons, Son [great grandson]

Females are excluded from coparcenary and they can’t demand the right in her husband’s property. For the creation of coparcenary normally still the coparcenary could continue to exist in his absence. Coparcenery is necessarily a creation of law it can never be created by agreement or otherwise. In any coparcenary system whenever a coparcener is born, acquires an interest by under his birth. It is a unique example of unity of possession of community of interest [common enjoyment] till partition take place coparcener can have absolute ownership on the coparcenary property, no alienation, no dispose of shares of a member.

Interest in coparcenary property is always fluctuating as the amount of interest wary with the birth and death of coparcener that is survivorship. Coparcenery property involves collective enjoy only there is no concept of individual enjoyment unless there is a partition to the effect. In Mitakshra coparcenary any modern coparcenary can ask for partition at any time as he has on inherent right by under his birth in that very coparcenary property.

If a property in coparcenary property then alienation of interest is of any kind concerning to that property is null and void because every coparcener gets a birthright on that property and without consent transfer is invalid or wrong or without giving his due interest. Property acquired by utilizing the income of coparcenary property then it is itself a coparcenary property. If any property is acquired by the old and assistance of coparcenary property it will be a coparcenary.

The property acquire by person on his income is self-acquired property, not a coparcenary property, or we can say that any property purchased by an Individual from his resources or own earning. Any property he acquired as a part of the division of any ancestral/coparcenary property.

Acquired as legal heir or by a testamentary document as will, Property inherent from mother, brother, grandmother property it is self-acquired property. Property acquired by a Hindu in any of the following ways is his self acquired or separate property even though he is a member of JHF:

  1. Property acquired by a Hindu by his exertion.
  2. Property acquired by adverse possession for 12 years is treated as self-acquired property.

Property by Hindu from any person other than his father, Grandfather, or Great Grandfather would be his separate property For Example – if a person earns money from the practice of hereditary priest it will not be regarded as a joint family.

Serial No. Hindu Coparcener Joint family
1. It is open to only certain members of Joint hindu family. Joint family is unlimited both as to number of person and remoteness of the descent.
2. The coparcener is limited to male members of family who are within the rule of 4 degrees inclusive of common ancestor. There is no such limitation in case of a joint family.
3. Since coparcenery is confined to males only it comes to an end with last surviving coparcener. Where as a Joint Family continues even after male death it may continue with females only.


4. Every coparcener is part of a joint family. Every Joint family is not a coparcenery.

This article is authored by Krishna Vyas, student of B.B.A. LL.B at Jai Narain Vyas University, Jodhpur

Also Read – Powers Of Karta In Hindu Undivided Family

Law Corner

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