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Frequently Asked Question
 

Registration

1. What is Registration?
Registration means recording of the contents of a document with a Registering Officer and preservation of copies of the original document.

2. What is document?
As defined in the Evidence Act, document means only matter expressed or described upon substance by means of letters, figures or marks or by more than any of those means intended to be used or which may be used for the purpose of recording that matter.

3. What is instrument?
Instrument means any document by which any right or liability is, or purports to be, created, transferred,  limited, extended, extinguished or recorded.

4. Why documents are registered?
The documents are registered for the purpose of conservation of evidence, assurance of title, publicity of documents and prevention of fraud.

5. Which documents require to be registered compulsorily?
Section 17 of the Registration Act, 1908 lays down different categories of document for which registration is compulsory. The documents relating to the following transactions of immovable properties are required to registered compulsorily

(a) instruments of gift of immovable property;
(b) 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.

6. What is immovable property?
Section 2(6) of the Registration Act, 1908 defines that "immovable property" includes land, buildings, hereditary allowances, rights to ways, lights, ferries, fisheries or any other benefit to arise out of land, and things attached to the earth, or permanently fastened to anything which is attached to the earth, but not standing timber, growing crops nor grass.

7. What are the consequences of non-registration of a document which is compulsorily registrable?

Section 49 of the Registration Act, 1908 describes the effect of non-registration of documents required to be registered. It says that no document, required to be registered, shall

(a) affect any immovable property comprised therein, or

(b) confer any power to adopt, or

(c) be received as evidence of any transaction affecting such property or conferring suchpower, unless it has been registered.

8. What should be the language of the document?
The language of a document should be in a language commonly used in the district. Under section 19 of the Registration Act, 1908, the registering officer is empowered to refuse to register a document if the same be in a language which the registering officer does not understand, and which is not commonly used in the district, unless that document be accompanied by a true translation into a language commonly used in the district and also by a true copy.

9. Where a document relating to land situated in West Bengal can be registered?
Section 28 & 30 of the Registration Act, 1908 state that a document affects land or immovable property can be registered in the office of the Sub-Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar within whose sub-district the whole or some portion of the property to which such document relates is situate or in the office of the Registrar to whom the said Sub- Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar is subordinate or in the office of the Registrar of Assurances, Calcutta .

10. Where a document not relating to land can be registered?

Section 29 of the Registration Act, 1908 states that every document, which does not affects land or immovable property, can be registered in the office of the Sub-Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar in whose sub-district the document was executed, or in the office of any other Sub-Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar under the state at which all the persons executing and claiming under the document desire the same to be registered.

Section 30 of the Registration Act, 1908 empowers the Registrar to whom the said Sub-Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar is subordinate and also the Registrar of Assurances, Kolkata can register the said document.

11. What are steps to be followed for registering a document?
Please click on steps of registration to know the detailed steps to be followed for registering a document.

12. What is the time frame prescribed for registration of a document?

Section 23 of the Registration Act, 1908 says that any document other than a will shall be presented for registration to the proper officer within four months from the date of its execution.

A copy of a decree or order may be presented for registration within four months from the day on which the decree or order was made, or, where it is appealable, within four months from the day on which it becomes final.

13. What is the remedy if a document is not registered within the prescribed period of four months?
As per the provisions of Section 25 of the Registration Act, 1908 if a document is not presented for registration within the prescribed time period of four months, and if in such case the delay in presentation of the document does not exceed a subsequent period of four months, then an application can be made to the Registrar, who may direct that on payment of a fine not exceeding ten times the amount of proper registration fee, such document shall be accepted for registration.

14. Who can present a document for registration?

As per provisions of the Registration Act, 1908 except in the cases mentioned in section 31, 88 and 89 of the Registration Act, 1908 every document to be registered shall be presented at the proper registration office, -

(a) by some person executing or claiming under the same,

(b) by the representative or assign of such person, or

(c) by the agent of such person, representative or assign, duly authorized by power-of- attorney executed and authenticated.

15. Can a document be presented for registration at private residence?
Under section 31 of the Registration Act, 1908, a provision has been made authorizing the registering officer, on special cause being shown, to attend at the residence of any person desiring to present a document for registration and accept for registration such a document, provided that the registering officer is satisfied about the special cause shown is sufficient.

16. Under what circumstances the registration of a document can be refused?

The refusal can be broadly classified into two categories - refusal of acceptance of documents and refusal of duly presented document.

Refusal of acceptance of documents
A document brought for registration shall not be accepted under the following circumstances:-
(a) If the document is written in a language which the registering officer does not understand and which is not commonly used in the district and if it is unaccompanied by a true translation and also by a true copy.
(b) If it contains unattested interlineations, blanks, erasures or alterations which in the opinion of the registering officer, require to be attested or entered in a "Kaifiyat" at the foot of the document.
(c) If the description of the property is insufficient to identify it or does not contain the information required.
(d) If the document is unaccompanied by a copy or copies of any map or plan which it contains.
(e) If the date of execution is not stated in the document or if the correct date is not ascertainable.
(f) If the document is presented after the prescribed time.
(g) If the document is presented in wrong office.
(h) If the document is presented by a minor, an idiot, or a lunatic or by any person who has no authority.

Refusal of duly presented document
A document duly presented for registration shall not be admitted to registration under the following circumstances:-
(a) If the executant fails to appear and admit execution within the prescribed time.
(b) If the executant denies execution.
(c) If the person by whom the document purports to be executed be dead, and his representative or assign denies execution.
(d) If the person purporting to have executed the document appears to be a minor, an idiot, or a lunatic.
(e) If the registering officer is not satisfied of the identity of the person appearing before him and alleging that he executed the document.
(f) If the registering officer is not satisfied as to the truth of the allegation that a person
who executed the document is dead.
(g) If the admitting agent’s power-of-attorney has not been made in accordance with the Act, or if an alleged
representative or assign has failed to prove his status.
(h) If the registering officer is not satisfied as to the fact of execution in the case of a will or of an authority to adopt
presented after the death of the testator or donor.
(i) If the prescribed fee or fine has not been paid.

17. What is the recourse available to a person wishing to register a document which has been refused?
Where the refusal order of the Sub-Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar is on the ground other than that of denial of execution, the appeal lies to the Registrar under section 72 of the Registration Act. On such a refusal to admit a document for registration, any person wishing to registrar the same should, within 30 days from the date of refusal, appeal to the Registrar to whom such Sub-Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar is subordinate, in order to establish his right to have the document registered. In such an event, under section 74 of the Registration Act, 1908, the Registrar may enquire whether the document has been executed and whether the requirements of the law currently in force have been compiled with on the part of the applicant or the person presenting the document for registration, as the case may be, so as to admit the document for registration. For the purpose of the enquiry, the Registrar is empowered to issue summons to enforce the attendance of witnesses and compel them to give evidence as if he is Civil Court. If the Registrar finds that the document has been executed and that the said requirement has been compiled with he can order for registration of the document. As per section 77 of the Act, when the Registrar refuses to order to register the document, any person claiming under such a document or his representative, assignee or agent may within thirty days after the passing of such order/decree, institute a suit in the proper Civil Court for a decree directing the document to be registered.

18. What personal details of the claimants and executors is to be mentioned in the document along with their names?
The following personal details along with name for every person associated with the document shall have to be provided-
(a) Place of residence or address.
(b) Profession.
(c) Nationality.
(d) Father’s name or Husband’s name as the case may be. Mother’s name if the person is usually described as the son/daughter of his/her mother
(e) Permanent Account Number, if the value of the property is five lacs or more than five lacs.

strong>19. What additional formalities required to be fulfilled if at least one the parties involved in transaction is not a citizen of India?
In such case, before proceeding to the registering officer for registering the document, a permission from Reserve Bank of India or from such authority as notified/directed by Govt of India must be obtained in that effect.

20. How one can get return of a registered document form a registering officer if the receipt is lost?
The presentant, the person to whom the original receipt was granted, shall submit an application to the concerned registering officer alleging the loss of receipt and requesting the return of the document. If the registering officer is satisfied with the identification of the presentant and the proof of loss of receipt, then if the document has already been registered, the document may be returned, but if the document has not been registered, a duplicate receipt may then be given after completing the legal formalities.
Where the applicant is not the presentant, the registering officer should neither return the document nor grant a duplicate receipt till he is satisfied that there is no fraud in the case.

21. What is the rate of registration fee?
Please click on Stamp Duty/Registration Fee link to know the related information.

22. How much registration fee is payable for registration of an agreement to sale?
For registering an agreement to sale without possession an amount of Rs.7/- is payable as registration fee.

Valuation and Stamp Duty

1. What is meant by market value?
As per section 2(16B) of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899, "market value" means, in relation to any property which is the subject matter of an instrument, the price which such property would have fetched or would fetch if sold in open market on the date of execution of such instrument as determined in such manner and by such authority as may be prescribed by the rules made under this Act or the consideration stated in the instrument, whichever is higher.

2. Whom to contact to find out the market value of a property?
To know the market value of the property one can contact with the office of the Sub- Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar within whose sub-district the whole or some portion of the property to which such document relates is situate or with the office of the Registrar to whom the said Sub-Registrar/Additional District Sub-Registrar is subordinate or with the office of the Registrar of Assurances, Kolkata.
Please click on the appropriate link in "Citizen Service" from where you can find the market value of your property.

A citizen can also himself ascertain market value of any property, situated within the state, through the links provided in this website, as per category of the property –
1. http://www.wbregistration.gov.in/MV_Land.aspx
2.http://www.wbregistration.gov.in/MV/Land_details_mv.aspx
3. http://www.wbregistration.gov.in/mv_aprt.aspx
but such market value will be subject to verification/ alteration by the concerned Registering officer, as per recital of the deed, for the purpose of final registration of document, if the R.O. deems so.

3. In case of construction or flat or apartment, which area is taken into account for assessment of true market value - carpet, built-up or super built-up?
For the purpose of assessment of true market value, super built-up area is taken into account.

4. What is stamp duty?
It is a type of tax which is paid for the transaction performed by way of document or instrument under the provisions of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899.

5. Why stamp duty has to be paid?
The payment of proper stamp duty on instruments bestows legality on them. Such instruments get evidentiary value and are admitted as evidence in Court of law. The instruments which are not duly stamped are not admitted as evidence.

6. On what basis stamp duty should be paid - market value or consideration amount?
Stamp duty has to be paid on the market value and not on the consideration amount.

7. At what point of time stamp duty is payable on instrument executed in India?
Section 17 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 states that all instruments chargeable with duty and executed by any person in India shall be stamped before or at the time of execution.

8. At what point of time stamp duty is payable on instrument executed out of India?
Section 18 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 states that every instrument chargeable with duty and executed out of India may be stamped within three months after it has been first received in India.

9. Who is liable to pay the stamp duty?
Section 29 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 states who is liable to pay stamp duty in any type of instrument. In a nutshell, in the absence of an agreement to the contrary, the expense of providing the proper stamp duty shall be borne-

a) by the purchaser in case of instrument of sale or agreement to sale,

b) by the lessee or intended lessee in case of instrument of lease or agreement to lease,

c) by the donor in case of instrument of gift,

d) by the settler in case of instrument of settlement ,

e) by the parties thereto in proportion to their respective shares in case of instrument of partition,

f) by the parties in equal shares in case of instrument of exchange.

10. How stamp duty can be paid?
Stamp duty can be paid in the following manner-

a) By way of impressed stamp paper.

b) By way of adhesive stamps.

c) By way of SABR

d) By Demand Drafts drawn from any agency bank payable to the appropriate Registering officer.

e) Stamp duty may be paid through GRIPS using net-banking (online mode). (http://www.wbregistration.gov.in/RequisitionForm/Steps_of_ePayment.aspx?case=RF ) or by making counter payments at designated Banks (offline mode) upon generation of challan but where amount of stamp duty is Rs. 5 lakhs or more, use of online mode is mandatory.

11. From where one can purchase stamp paper?
Stamp paper can only be purchased from the Treasury or from the licensed stamp vendors.

12. What are the consequences of not paying the stamp duty?
As per provision of section 35 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899, no instrument chargeable with duty shall be admitted in evidence for any purpose by any person having by law or consent of parties, authority to receive evidence, or shall be acted upon, registered or authenticated by any such person or by any public officer.

13. An agreement to sale has been executed on a stamp paper of Rs.10/-. Is it a valid document in the eye of law?
If the amount of stamp duty chargeable on the said agreement to sale is more than Rs.10/-, then as per provision of section 35 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899, the said agreement to sale is not admissible in evidence.

14. What are the penal provision applicable to a person who has committed offence against the stamp law?
For committing offence against the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 there are specific penalties against each type of offence mentioned in the said Act. In some cases, it may be punishable with fine upto five thousand rupees. Also there is a provision of prosecution of any person who appears to have committed offence against the stamp law.

15. Can there be refund of stamp duty in case the stamp paper is unused or mutiliated?
Yes, refund can be claimed under section 49 & 50 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899. Application for refund can be made on printed forms (Form No. 2) containing the particulars required by law and within the time limit and to the appropriate authority as specified by the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 read with the West Bengal Stamp Rules, 1994.

16. What is meant by adjudication of instruments?
Section 31 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 deals with adjudication of instruments. It means determining the chargeability of stamp duty on instruments.

17. Which authority is to be approached for adjudication?
The authority to be approached for adjudication is Collector.

18. How does one apply for adjudication?
Application for adjudication should be accompanied with an abstract of the instrument, and also with such affidavit or other evidence as the Collector may deem necessary to prove that all the facts and circumstances effecting the chargeability of the instrument with duty, or the amount of the duty with which the instrument is chargeable, are fully and truly set forth therein.

19. What are the rates of stamp duty on instruments relating to transfer of property by way of sale?
The rate of stamp duty chargeable on instrument relating to transfer of property by way of sale is different for rural and urban areas. For rural areas the rate of stamp duty chargeable on instrument relating to transfer of property by way of sale is 5% of the market value of the property and for urban areas the same is 6% of the market value of the property. In both cases if the market value of property exceeds Rs.40,00,000/-, an additional stamp duty of 1% of the market value of the property is chargeable.

To know the details on the rate of stamp duty chargeable on instruments please click on the link Stamp Duty & Fees.

20. What are the rates of stamp duty on instruments relating to transfer of property by way of gift?
The rate of stamp duty chargeable on instrument relating to transfer of property by way of gift is different for instrument of gift in favour of family members and for instrument of gift in favour of non-family members. The rate of stamp duty chargeable on instrument of gift in favour of family members is 0.5% of the market value of the property and the rate of stamp duty chargeable on instrument of gift in favour of non-family members is 5% of the market value of the property rural areas and 6% of the market value of the property for urban areas. An additional stamp duty of 1% of the market value of the property is chargeable on instrument of gift in favour of non-family members if the market value of property exceeds Rs.40,00,000/-.

To know the details on the rate of stamp duty chargeable on instruments please click on the link Stamp Duty / Registration Fees.

21. Who are considered as family member for determining stamp duty on instrument of gift?
For the purpose of determining stamp duty on instrument of gift, member of a family means parent, spouse, son, daughter (married, unmarried, widowed or divorcee), son’s wife, grandson, granddaughter, brother, and sister (married, unmarried, widowed or divorcee).

22. What is the amount of stamp duty chargeable on an agreement to sale?
The rate of stamp duty chargeable on an agreement to sale is different for rural and urban areas. For rural areas the rate of stamp duty chargeable on agreement to sale is 5% of the market value of the property and for urban areas the same is 6% of the market value of the property. In both cases if the market value of property exceeds Rs.40,00,000/-, an additional stamp duty of 1% of the market value of the property is chargeable.

23. What is meant by impounding of instruments?
Section 33 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 states that every person having by law or consent of parties, authority to receive evidence, and every person in charge of public office, except an officer of police, before whom any instrument, chargeable, in his opinion, with duty, is produced or comes in the performance of his functions, shall, if it appears to him that such instrument is not duly stamped, impound the same.

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