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KARACHI: The Sindh High Court Bar Association (SHCBA) on Friday requested the Sindh governor to refuse assent to the “Sindh Letters of Administration and Succession Certificates Bill, 2021” and return it to the Sindh Assembly for reconsideration under Article 116 (2) (b) of the Constitution.

In a letter to Sindh governor, the SHCBA stated that the Sindh Assembly had recently passed the bill in which some major changes had been made to the procedure for obtaining letters of administration/succession certificates which were required in order for the assets of a deceased person to be transferred to their legal heirs.

Presently, the procedure is that legal heirs are required to approach the civil court concerned to obtain such letters/certificates. Under the new bill, the entire process is proposed to be shifted to NADRA.

The letter noted that the bar associations were well aware of the difficulties and delays faced by the legal heirs in obtaining letters/certificates under the present system and fully supported reforming the system to make the process faster and easier for the legal heirs.

The SHCBA stated that unfortunately the Sindh government did not consult with the bar council and associations (which had the most day-to-day experience of the practical working of the present succession system as well as its problems) to discuss the proposed reforms before the bill was passed by the Assembly.

“Had this been done, the defects in the bill could have been avoided,” it added.

The association said that there were three major problems with the bill.

The SHCBA pointed out that the first two problems were of a fundamentally constitutional nature. As presently framed, the bill appeared to exceed the legislative jurisdiction of the Sindh Assembly.

It noted that the third problem dealt with certain procedural lacunae in the bill which, unless removed, would increase rather than decrease difficulties of the legal heirs.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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