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  • Inheritance lawyer?

    Looking for an inheritance lawyer in Jakarta. I'm a mixed child of a Frenchman and an Indonesian woman. My father built a business here but he passed. Due to unfortunate circumstances, I recently came to know that my mother has been hoarding all of his assets herself. As far as all my research shows, what she is doing is unlawful and me and my brother are entitled to a part of his assets. I'm looking to get a consultation with a lawyer about this. It's been hard to talk to my family members about this because they've been both busy and uncomfortable about the topic, understandably. My father's old expat friends are also mysteriously busy at this time lol. So who better to turn to for advice than the internet, right? Any recommendation or advice is appreciated.

    A very odd thing I'd like to add: it hasn't been said very clearly to me and I cannot find anything about this on the internet, but my mother and my aunt both mention something about this transfer of assets being perfectly lawful because my mother was "next of kin". However, as far as I know, Jakarta does not have any next-of-kin laws, and only very remote and specific religions in Indonesia allow for next-of-kin inheritance.

  • #2
    Before you look for a lawyer I recommend you to read the Law(s) and Regulations , so you can quickly know if the lawyer you talk to knows about the subject .

    I think there is a rule for Muslims and non-Muslims , and there may be also regional rule (but probably not in jakarta) .

    You could search the internet for something like : "hukum waris" (inheritance law) , hukum harta warisan , cara hitung pembagian harta warisan (how to calculate the distribution of inheritance) , .. Use Google Translate if necessary .

    You can get more help from us if you give us more details , like :
    - are you and/or your brother French & Indonesian citizen , or only Indonesian citizen , or only French citizen ?
    - did you dad have a Will ?
    - what is the family religion ?
    - is there a property and who is the owner of it according to the property's document ?
    - did you parents made a Prenup/separated wealth ? (about inheritance) (about inheritance) (inheritance according Islam)
    Last edited by marcus; 11-11-19, 14:14.


    • #3
      You can search also for "Peraturan Daerah Jakarta tentang waris" , in order to know about regional rule . But be informed that a Law (UU) is "stronger" dan Regulations (Peraturan) , so a Peraturan cannot contradict a Law .


      • #4
        from Johannes Nugroho :
        One of the most baffling aspects in the Indonesian legal code is the inheritance law. Broadly speaking, the current law recognizes three different categories of citizens for whom different sets of rules exist: Muslims are legally bound to follow Islamic inheritance precepts, non-Muslims follow a mixture of statutory and customary laws, and, almost farcically, ?those equated as Europeans [Indonesians of European, Chinese, Indian and Arabic descent] will follow the rules of inheritance according to the civil code.?


        (sorry , no identification of the source)

        B. Inheritance
        1. Inheritance Rights According to Law
        Inheritance in Indonesia is governed by Islamic Law, in the case of Muslims, and by the Civil Code in the case of non-Muslims. Because nearly the entire population of rural Java is Muslim, this analysis is limited to Islamic Law.
        In Indonesia, Islamic Law has been codified in a "Compilation of Islamic Law" which is used as the basis for legal decisions made by religious courts. According to Islamic law, a Muslim can bequeath up to one-third of his or her property by will. Remaining property, or all property in the case of intestacy, is governed by Islamic succession rules.
        When a married person dies, half of any marital property becomes the separate property of the surviving spouse, and the other half of the marital property (the deceased's share) devolves to his or her heirs as if it were separate property per a will or intestacy rules.
        The rules for dividing separate property are somewhat more complicated. A widower is entitled to one-half of his wife's separate property if the couple does not have children and one-fourth if they do have children. A widow is entitled to one-fourth of her husband's separate property if there are no children and one-eighth if there are children. If the decedent had one daughter and no sons, the daughter is entitled to one-half of the property. If the decedent had more than one daughter but no sons, all daughters are entitled to split two-thirds of the estate. However, if the decedent had any sons, the share of any daughter and any son is figured such that each son receives a share that is twice as large as each daughter's share. In general, if, after the decedent's spouse and children get their shares, there is still remaining property, such property passes to the decedent's parents and siblings .
        Heirs can agree by consensus to ignore the intestacy rules or the provisions of a will and distribute the property among themselves however they choose, so long as each heir is aware of his or her actual rights under the Compilation of Islamic Laws.

        Inheritance Rights in Practice
        During our field research it became clear that few families follow Islamic inheritance rules. Rather, most families follow traditional Javanese inheritance customs. This is legally possible under the provision above allowing heirs to reach a consensus to divide the property in any manner they choose.
        Customary Javanese practice is beneficial to daughters, who inherit on par with sons. Nearly everyone interviewed stated that they follow the customary Javanese tradition of granting all children equal shares of a deceased parent's property rather than following Islamic Law, which gives a larger share to sons. Families also follow customary practices when deciding what share of property the surviving spouse will inherit. Under customary practice, a surviving spouse generally inherits all marital property and separate property if the couple's children are still young. If the children are adults and the surviving spouse is elderly, all of the decedent's property will usually pass directly to the children. It is generally understood that if the property passes to the children while one parent is still alive, the children remain responsible for caring for their surviving parent.


        • #5
          Thank you everyone for the replies. This was very informative and will help me a lot to weed out some lawyers that might not be specialized in this field. To answer some questions:

          Originally posted by marcus View Post
          You can get more help from us if you give us more details , like :
          - are you and/or your brother French & Indonesian citizen , or only Indonesian citizen , or only French citizen ?
          - did you dad have a Will ?
          - what is the family religion ?
          - is there a property and who is the owner of it according to the property's document ?
          - did you parents made a Prenup/separated wealth ?
          -My brother and I held dual citizenship, French and Indonesian. He is 20 so he still has both. I am 23 now, so legally I believe I should have resigned, however my Indonesian passport is still valid (not yet expired)
          -My father died in Jakarta and did not have a will. This was a big problem for my family financially, it seems, because a lot of our funds were in bank accounts under his name and my mother could not access them. A lot of these things were kept secret from me so I'm sorry for not being able to be too specific here.
          -We are catholic, all of us. Mother, father, brother and me. When we made our KTP, my brother and I were also listed as catholic.
          -When my father died, all of his assets (including his company) were put under the ownership of "Estate of *father's name*" and his brother and my mother were appointed administrators because at the time, I was not yet of age. My mother then sold the company. This dealing was conducted in Singapore. The selling of the company was done between the buyer and the "Estate of *father's name*". When this transaction was conducted, however, I was already of age (18 years old).
          -I am not sure if there was a prenup. However, my mother (Indonesian citizen) did own some property (land and a house) that she acquired during their marriage. From what I understand, this can only happen if they have a prenup.

          Very sad time for a daughter to have to have intercultural and inheritance fights with family like this. I appreciate all your input, truly.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Lyziia95 View Post
            (1) ... all of his assets (including his company) were put under the ownership of "Estate of *father's name*" and his brother and my mother were appointed administrators ...

            (2) My mother then sold the company. This dealing was conducted in Singapore...

            (1) This "Estate of *father's name*" was a decision of the Indonesian Justice court ?

            (2) What you mean by "conducted in Singapore" ? Was your father's company a Singaporean company ?


            • #7
              Originally posted by marcus View Post

              (1) This "Estate of *father's name*" was a decision of the Indonesian Justice court ?

              (2) What you mean by "conducted in Singapore" ? Was your father's company a Singaporean company ?
              1. I am not sure. I think so. I remember one of the first things discussed over my father's death bed was this. His business associate was at the hospital, and he said to my mother that they would surely need to fly over my uncle (father's brother) in order to have someone else to help administrate the estate. My mother was never allowed to make decisions about his assets alone. It was said as a given. I remember it being a big inconvenience for her because for every withdrawal, she needed to get a notarised signature from my uncle to get the authorisation. I wish I could ask him more questions about this, but he refuses to speak to me. It seems there was a big quarrel between him and my mother that has been hidden from me.

              2. I am now unsure. I think it was. It is a pretty well known business, if you don't mind I could private message you the name, maybe you might be in the know. Its headquarters were (and still are) in Jakarta. Another thing to add about this is that the transaction was conducted between the buyer, "Estate of *father's name*" and his business associate.


              • #8
                From , Jun 2016
                Title : Hak Orang Tua atas Warisan Anaknya yang Sudah Berkeluarga (The Rights of Parents on the Inheritance of their Children Who Already Have Family)
                By : NAYARA Advocacy - Hukum Keluarga dan Waris

                [Question : My brother died, leaving a wife and a child age 7 years .. My brother left a house .. in his own name, and money in the bank and no will. Now my parents want to sell the house and the house certificate is in my parents' hands. Are my parents entitled to sell it, ..? Can my parents get a share of my brother's property?

                Anwer : The legal system of inheritance in Indonesia is divided into 2 (two) types, namely inheritance according to western law which refers to the Civil Code ("Civil Code") and inheritance according to Islamic law which refers to the Compilation of Islamic Law ("KHI").

                Based on western inheritance law, the right to inherit goes to the wife (widow of your brother) and child, so that your parents are not entitled to sell the house inherited from your brother.

                However, if your family is Muslim and does not submit to the western inheritance law, then based on KHI the right to inherit is your wife, children and parents. This means that your parents also have the right to sell the house, but with the agreement of another heir, your wife and your brother's child.

                The western inheritance system applies to Indonesian citizens of religion other than Islam or for those who are Muslim but "subject" themselves to the law of western inheritance.

                In the West Waris Law, as written in Article 832 of the Civil Code, those who are entitled to be heirs are blood families and the alive husband or wife.

                Please note, inheritance in western law recognizes 4 (four) groups of heirs as follows:
                Group I :
                husband / wife who live the longest and the child / offspring.
                Group II :
                parents and heir siblings
                Group III
                family in a straight line up after the inheritor's father and mother
                Group IV
                uncle and aunt both from the father's side and from the mother's side, the uncle's and aunt's descendants to the sixth degree are counted from the heir, brother of grandparents and their descendants, until the sixth degree is calculated from the heir.

                This classification is intended so that heirs can know which heirs are entitled to take precedence in obtaining inheritance based on their position. For example, if the heirs in Group I are still alive, then the heirs in Group II are not entitled to inheritance.

                Based on the explanation above, those who are entitled to become heirs based on western inheritance law are the wife and children of Group I.

                Why aren't parents heirs?
                The parents of the testator are not entitled to inheritance because the wife and child in group I are still alive. Thus, as a result of the law, the parent of the testator is not entitled to take any material action against the inheritor's house including the sale of the property of the heir to any party and is not entitled to other assets owned by the testator.

                What about the parts of the heirs?
                One thing that needs to be observed in western inheritance law is that in the event of a marriage between a man and a woman, at that moment there will be a round of mixing of property. In accordance with Article 119 of the Civil Code, namely:
                "Since the occurrence of marriage, according to the law there has been a total joint asset between husband and wife ..."
                If before marriage there is a marriage agreement, then there is no compounding of property which means that both inheritance and assets acquired during the marriage remain the property of each person.

                The link between the assets and assets of the gono-gini above affects the calculation of the portion obtained by the heirs, namely:
                - In the event that there is no marriage agreement (mixture of property / assets), the inheritance property must be divided into two first (kloving). With the details of 1/2 of the joint assets being part of the wife, then half will be divided between the wife (1/4) and the child (1/4).
                - In case there is a marriage agreement of separated wealth, then the inheritor's inheritance is divided between the wife and child, so that each gets 1/2 . While the wife's assets are not tampered with.

                Unlike western inheritance law, Islamic inheritance law will not be affected by the marriage agreement ...

                Regarding the position of the 7 years old child, a guardian can be appointed based on the Judge's decision at the suggestion of the family member.]
                Last edited by marcus; 27-03-20, 13:36.


                • #9
                  So Lyziia95 , assuming the information in post no.8 is correct (I think it is because I have read information from this website before an it seems a respectable website) , my opinion is :

                  (a) Assuming your parents had a marriage agreement of separated wealth , all assets in your father's name should be divided equaly between your mother , you , and your brother (1/3 for each of you) .

                  (b) If there was no marriage agreement or marriage agreement with shared wealth , the Indonesian Marriage Law (UU no.1 Tahun 1974) , Article 35 ["(1) Harta benda yang diperoleh selama perkawinan menjadi harta bersama"] states that all assets , registered during the marriage (but except those from inheritance and/or gifts) , in your father's name + in your mother's name should be taken in consideration . Half (50%) of all that belongs to your mother according to the Marriage Law , and the other 50% will be divided equaly between your mother , you , and your brother (1/3 each of this 50% or 1/6 each of the 100%) .

                  (b.1) In addition to that all assets in your father's name registered before the marriage + assets he got from inheritance and/or gifts (after the marriage) are considered owned only by your father (according to the Indonesian Marriage Law , Article 35 [(2) Harta bawaan dari masing-masing suami dan isteri dan harta benda yang diperoleh masing-masing sebagai hadiah atau warisan, adalah di bawah penguasaan masing-masing sepanjang para pihak tidak menentukan lain.] should be divided equaly between your mother , you , and your brother (1/3 each) .


                  You see that the marriage agreement has a big effect in your case . Be informed the fact that your mother has land + house registered in her name during the marriage does not necessarily means that your parents made a prenup/separated wealth . In this Forum , some members have told that they did buy properties in the Indonesian spouse's name even without the separated wealth agreement (which is not according to the Law but still possible) . So I suggest you to check it further (one way is to see if the marriage cerificate mention the prenup , but this may not be enough because sometimes Catatan Sipil may not write that , or the couple made an agreement after the marriage through Court decision , ..)