The Registration of documents is made under the provisions of the Registration Act, 1908. The Registration Act 1908 is used for proper recording and registration of documents / instruments, which give them more authenticity.
Registration refers to the recording of the contents of a document with a Registering Officer appointed by the State Government. The State Government may exclude any district or tracts of country from its operation. The Registering Officer performs the important function of preservation of copies of the original document.
Objective of Registration
The main objectives of registration can be listed as follows:
- The conservation of evidence,
- Assurance of title, publicity of documents and prevention of fraud.
- Registration ensures and safeguards the interest of an intending purchaser.
Registration Establishment for registration of documents:
The main purpose for which the Registration Act 1908 was designed was to ensure that correct land records could be maintained. The Act is also used for proper recording of transactions relating to other immovable property. The Act provides for registration of other documents also, which can give these documents more authenticity. Registering authorities have been provided in all the districts for this purpose.
Where document should be registered:
The document should be presented for registration at the office of Registrar/Sub-Registrar in whose jurisdiction the property is located, during 9.30 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. on any working day.
Document relating to immovable property should be registered in the office of Sub-Registrar of sub-district within which the whole or some portion of the property is situated. Other documents can be registered in the office of Sub-Registrar where all persons executing the document desire it to be registered.
A Registrar can accept a document which is registerable with sub-registrar who is subordinate to him. The document should be presented for registration at the office of Registrar/Sub-Registrar. However, in the special case, the officer may attend residence of any person to accept a document or will.
All persons executing the document or their representatives, assigns or agents holding a power of attorney must appear before registering officer. They have to admit execution and sign the document in the presence of Registrar. Appearance may be simultaneous or at different times. If some of the persons are unable to appear within 4 months, further time up to additional 4 months can be given on payment of fine up to 10 times the proper registration fee.
The documents that are presented for registration should be accompanied by true copies thereof. Any blanks, erasure or alteration in the document should be attested by the person executing the document with their signatures.
The delivery of the document is made on the production of the receipt issued by the cashier in respect of the document at the time of presentation.
Documents of which registration are compulsory
Registration of documents relating to immovable property (of the value of more than Rs. 100 /-) is compulsory. Registration of will is optional.
Documents not requiring registration
Some documents though related to immovable property are not required to be registered. These are given in section 17(2) of the Registration Act 1908.
Documents relating to immovable property (of the value of less than 100 /-), lease of immovable property for a term of less than a year, documents relating to movable property, wills are optionally registrable.
Time of presentation for registration
The document should be submitted for registration within 4 months from the date of execution. Decree or order of Court can be submitted within four months from the day it becomes final. If the document is executed by several persons at different times, it may be presented for registration within 4 months from the date of each execution. If a document is executed abroad by some of the parties, it can be presented for registration within four months after its arrival in India. In cases where the delay of presentation of the document is unavoidable, the Registrar may accept the document for registration on payment of fine not exceeding ten times the amount of registration fee. Wills may be presented for registration at any time and may be deposited in any manner.
If a person finds that a document has been filed for registration by a person who is not empowered to do so, he can present the document for re-registration within 4 months from the date he became aware of the fact that registration of document is invalid.
Presentation of documents
As per Section 32 of the Registration Act, 1908 every document to be registered under the Act shall be presented at the registration-office:-
- a) by some person executing or claiming under the same, or, in the case of a copy of a decree or order, claiming under the decree or order, or
b). by the representative or assign or such a person, or
c.) by the agent of such a person, representative or assign, duly authorised by power-of-attorney and authenticated in the manner hereinafter mentioned.
As per Section 33 of the Act, for the purpose of section 32, the following powers-of-attorney shall alone be recognised:-
- if the principal at the time of executing the power-of-attorney resides in any part of India in which the Act is in force, a power-of-attorney executed before and authenticated by the Registrar or Sub-Registrar within whose district or sub-district the principal resides;
- if the principal at the time aforesaid (resides in any part of India in which this Act is not in force), a power –of-attorney executed before and authenticated by any magistrate;
- if the principal at the time aforesaid does not reside in India, a power-of-attorney executed before and authenticated by a Notary Public, or any Court, Judge, Magistrate, (Indian) consul or Vice-Consul, or representative of the Central government.
Provided that the following persons shall not be required to attend at any registration-office or Court for the purpose of executing any such power-of-attorney as is mentioned in clauses (a) and (b) of this section, namely:-
- persons who by reason of bodily infirmity are unable without risk or serious inconvenience so to attend;
- Persons who are in jail under civil or criminal process; and
- Persons exempt by law from personal appearance in court.
Effective date of document
A document takes effect from its date of execution and not from the date of registration. However, if the document states that it will be effective from a particular date, it will be effective from that date.
Document registered has priority over oral agreement – Any non-testamentary document registered under the Act takes effect against any oral agreement relating to the property. The only exceptions are:
- If possession of property (movable or immovable) is delivered on basis of such oral agreement and such delivery of possession is valid transfer under any law
- (b) Mortgage by deposit of title deeds takes effect against any mortgage deed subsequently executed and registered which relates to same property
Effect of non-registration
If a document which is required to be registered under section 17 or under provisions of Transfer of Property Act, 1882 is not registered, the effect is that such un-registered document:
- does not affect any immovable property comprised therein
- cannot be received as evidence of any transaction affecting such property. Thus, the document becomes redundant and useless for all practical purposes. It can be accepted as evidence in criminal proceedings.
Documents of which registration is compulsory:
As per Section 17 of the Registration Act, 1908, the registration of the following documents is compulsory:
(1)The following documents shall be registered, if the properties to which they relate is situated in a district in which, and if they have been executed on or after the date on which, Act No. XVI of 1864, or the Indian Registration Act, 1866, or the Indian Registration Act, 1871, or the Indian Registration Act, 1877 or this Act came or comes into force, namely:-
(a) Instruments of gift of immovable property;
(b) other non-testamentary instruments which purport or operate to create, declare, assign, limit or extinguish, whether in present or in future, any right, title or interest, whether vested or contingent, of the value of one hundred rupees, and upwards, to or in immovable property;
(c) non-testamentary instruments which acknowledge the receipt or payment of any consideration on account of the creation, declaration, assignment, limitation or extinction of any such right, title or interest; and
(d) leases of immovable property from year to year, or for any term exceeding one year, or reserving a yearly rent;
(e) non-testamentary instruments transferring or assigning any decree or order of a court or any award when such decree or order or award purports or operates to create, declare, assign, limit or extinguish, whether in present or in future, any right, title or interest, whether vested or contingent, of the value of one hundred rupees and upwards, to or in immovable property:
PROVIDED that the State Government may, by order published in the Official Gazette, exempt from the operation of this sub-section any leases executed in any district, or part of a district, the terms granted by which do not exceed five years and the annual rent reserved by which do not exceed fifty rupees.
(2) Nothing in clauses (b) and (c) of sub-section (1) applies to-
(i) Any composition-deed; or
(ii) any instrument relating to shares in a joint Stock Company, notwithstanding that the assets of such company consist in whole or in part of the immovable property; or
(iii) any debenture issued by any such company and not creating, declaring, assigning, limiting or extinguishing any right, title or interest, to or in immovable property except insofar as it entitles the holder to the security afforded by a registered instrument whereby the company has mortgaged, conveyed or otherwise transferred the whole or part of its immovable property or any interest therein to trustees upon trust for the benefit of the holders of such debentures; or
(iv) any endorsement upon or transfer of any debenture issued by any such company; or
(v) any document not itself creating, declaring, assigning, limiting or extinguishing any right, title or interest of the value of one hundred rupees and upwards to or in immovable property, but merely creating a right to obtain another document which will, when executed, create, declare, assign, limit or extinguish any such right, title or interest; or
(vi) any decree or order of a court [except a decree or order expressed to be made on a compromise and comprising immovable property other than that which is the subject-matter of the suit or proceeding;] or
(vii) Any grant of immovable property by government; or
(viii) Any instrument of partition made by a revenue-officer; or
(ix) any order granting a loan or instrument of collateral security granted under the Land Improvement Act, 1871, or the Land Improvement Loans Act, 1883; or
(x) any order granting a loan under the Agriculturists Loans Act, 1884, or instrument for securing the repayment of a loan made under that Act; or
(xa) any order made under the Charitable Endowments Act, 1890, (6 of 1890) vesting any property in a Treasurer of Charitable Endowments or divesting any such treasurer of any property; or
(xi) Any endorsement on a mortgage-deed acknowledging the payment of the whole or any part of the mortgage-money, and any other receipt for payment of money due under a mortgage when the receipt does not purport to extinguish the mortgage; or
(xii) Any certificate of sale granted to the purchaser of any property sold by public auction by a civil or revenue-officer.
Explanation: A document purporting or operating to effect a contract for the sale of immovable property shall not be deemed to require or ever to have required registration by reason only of the fact that such document contains a recital of the payment of any earnest money or of the whole or any part of the purchase money.
(3) Authorities to adopt a son, executed after the 1st day of January 1872, and not conferred by a will, shall also be registered.
Documents of which registration are optional
Any of the following documents may be registered under this Act, namely:-
(a) instruments (other than instruments of gift and wills) which purport or operate to create, declare, assign, limit or extinguish, whether in present or in future, any right, title or interest, whether vested or contingent, of a value less than one hundred rupees, to or in immovable property;
(b) instruments acknowledging the receipt or payment of any consideration on account of the creation, declaration, assignment, limitation or extinction of any such right, title or interest;
(c) Leases of immovable property for any term not exceeding one year, and leases exempted under section 17;
(cc) instruments transferring or assigning any decree or order of a court or any award when such decree or order or award purports or operates to create, declare, assign, limit or extinguish, whether in present or in future, any right, title or interest, whether vested or contingent, of a value less than one hundred rupees, to or in immovable property;]
(d) instruments (other than wills) which purport or operate to create, declare, assign, limit or extinguish any right, title or interest to or in movable property;
(e) Wills; and
(f) All other documents not required by section 17 to be registered.
Documents Exempted from Registration
Certain documents executed by or in favour of the Government are exempted from registration by virtue of section 90 of the Registration Act 1908
Exemption of certain documents executed by or in favour of government
(1) Nothing contained in this Act or in the Indian Registration Act, 1877, or in the Indian Registration Act, 1871, or in any Act thereby repealed, shall be deemed to require, or to have any time required, the registration of any of the following documents or maps, namely:-
(a) documents issued, received or attested by any officer engaged in making a settlement or revision or settlement of land-revenue, and which form part of the records of such settlement; or
(b) documents and maps issued, received or authenticated by any officer engaged on behalf of the government in making or revising the survey of any land, and which form part of the record of such survey; or
(c) documents which, under any law for the time being in force, are filed periodically in any revenue-office by patwaris or other officers charged with the preparation of village records; or
(d) sanads, inam, title-deeds and other documents purporting to be or to evidence grants or assignments by the government of land or of any interest in land; or
(e) Notice given under section 74 or section 76 of the Bombay Land-Revenue Code, 1879, or relinquishment of occupancy by occupants, or of alienated land by holders of such land.
(2) All such documents and maps shall, for the purposes of sections 48 and 49, be deemed to have been and to be registered in accordance with the provisions of this Act.