The Registration Act, 1908 provides for the law regulating the registration of documents. The Act makes registration of documents required in immovable property mandatory in order to impart authenticity and to confer legal title to these documents. It enlists the documents that are required to be registered and also specifies the process involved during registration. It lays down the effect of registration and consequences of non-registration.
Section 17 of the Act prescribes five categories of documents that are required to be compulsorily registered. Any document which does not fall within Section 17 can be registered, but it is optional.
Documents of which registration is compulsory, interalia, include Conveyance, Gift Deed, Lease Deed (above one year), Leave and License Agreement, Tenancy Agreement, Declaration Deed, Relinquishment deed, and/or any documents which creates/extinguishes any right title or interest in any immovable property of the value of one hundred rupees or more. Only then would the pre-existing rights, titles, and interest of the transferor stand divested in the purchaser/transferee.
No document required by section 17 of the Act to be registered shall
- Affect any immovable property comprised therein , or
- Confer any power to adopt or,
- Be received as evidence of any transaction affecting such property or conferring
such power, unless it has been registered.
Testamentary documents like Will, Codicil are not required to be registered even if the immovable properties given under a will may be worth more than lakhs of rupees. A Will may be presented for registration or deposited any time. It does not require registration within four months of execution as is required in case of other documents.
Agreement for Sale does not require to be registered under the Registration Act as it does not create , declare, assign, limit or extinguish any right , title or interest of any immovable property.
Timeframe stipulated for registration:
A document required to be registered shall be accepted for registration within four months from the date of its execution. If the document, for instance, a sale deed, is not registered within the stipulated time, it will not be a sale deed in the eyes of law.
The Act also provides that a document shall become operative from its date of execution and not from its date of Registration.
Who can present the document for registration?
If a document is presented for registration by a person, who does not have the capacity to do so, the registration of the document becomes invalid. In such cases, the Registration Act requires a Power of Attorney to be granted to the agent by the principal, before it can be presented for registration.
However, the Act itself provides for a remedy. Also, when a person, who executes such a document, realizes that such registration is invalid, he can apply to the Registrar or the Sub-Registrar within four months from the date of such realization. Subsequently, he can apply for the re-registration of the document.
Initially, the Act did not provide for employing technology during the registration process, but due to the huge time consumption, lack of transparency in the procedures involved, threat of errors and omissions and subsequent problems faced in preservation of documents, the Act was further amended to introduce computers in the registration procedures.
The Registers of land records for cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad were the first ones to go digital. After that many more cities have joined the list which is still growing.
- The Registration Act is a legislation of Union of India.
- It was enforced for maintaining proper land records of immovable property deals in rural and urban areas.