I get at least one call a month saying…..somewhat like this:
“My ………..(father, mother, brother,….aunt) has died and has left a motley group of shares, fixed deposits, mutual funds, bank accounts, …do you have somebody who can handle all this?”
“Actually I do not think it is worth more than Rs. 10 Lakhs (the figure can change, just one of the numbers heard recently), and me or my sisters do not care about this…but we need a closure.”
ME: Oh ye dutiful Next of Kin…..what were you doing when this person was alive?
“Oh he was MANAGING his own portfolio, and we thought he was doing everything right….we did not ask him”
ME: What about his demat account and trading account?
“Arre he was trading in some shares, but I think over all he only lost some money over the past 3 years”
ME: You knew he was losing money?
Yes, Subra. But it was his only source of ENTERTAINMENT and we did not want to interfere.
ME: How many mutual fund schemes has he invested in?
Not sure Subra, I think about 32 schemes ….
ME: and pray, how much is the amount….
Not sure Subra, but I do not think it is worth more than Rs. 2 lakhs in all the schemes put together.
Subra tell me honestly what should I do with all this. Neither my sisters nor me are really interested in this money.
ME: Make a bonfire.
Subra you cannot be serious, right?
Well I am branded as a cynic, but if you guys had no time, no willingness, or no whatever to clear this mess when he/she was around, you will not want to go through the Indian messy legal system, right?
Sorry, but your………..X did not ‘manage’ his portfolio, he GROSSLY MESSED UP and created a shit of a ‘portfolio’. Many of the shares are delisted, are part of a promoter’s quota, cannot be sold or just vanished. Yes you have some high value shares like Reliance, Tata Steel, ……but getting it transferred to your Mother’s name is not easy. Some of these shares are held in joint names with your sisters and brother – and the signatures have been ‘done’ by your dad. Even they do not know what kinda signatures have been used. The mutual funds are little less messy. All you have to do is to send the death certificate of your dads and get it ‘transmitted’ to your mother’s name. However it makes sense to hold it in joint names of your Mom and you. For doing this you will have to get your KYC and your mother’s KYC done. This is a simple procedure but dealing with the mutual funds is avoidable if you have a choice.
I have no clue of any CA or lawyer who will be interested in a portfolio of Rs. 12 Lakhs, unless the fees is about Rs. 5 lakhs. Your heart will not allow for this, because SOMEBODY else will tell you it can be done cheaper, really cheap.
Frankly, BONFIRE is the best way out.
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