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Partition of Jointly Held Property in India

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Partition of property becomes necessary when you want to separate out your share from joint ownership. In India it is very common to inherit property from ancestors in joint ownership. In such cases property lawyer advises to file for partition.

The following questions are frequently asked for partition of property in India:

What is partition of property?

Immoveable Property is generally owned jointly. Joint ownership means a property where more than one party is the owner of the estate. Arising of disputes is inevitable in such properties. Partition is a solution. It is a division of estate as per the share of each co-owner.

How do I know my share in the joint ownership of property?

Share can exist due to inheritance or through some title document (sale deed, will etc). In the absence of clear title, other documents like land records, tax receipts, survey documents, help to prove a title.

What if no document is available with me?

If a party has no document available with him, he can file for inspection of documents in the Registration Office where land is located and get the certified copies of certain documents.

How does partition of joint ownership take place?

It can be done by:

  1. mutual understanding among co-owners – making an agreement accordingly
  2. by demanding one’s share

How can I deal with the partitioned property?

Till the time estate is joint, shares of co-owners are undivided. After division, each co-owner gets a share in the joint estate as per his entitlement according to the law.  Law of inheritance is also applicable when division takes place. Each co-owner becomes the absolute owner of his part. He is free to dispose of the estate.

What is the role of a partition deed?

It helps in smooth division. It is an agreement drawn in clear and unambiguous manner, executed on a stamp paper. It is required to be registered at a place where the property is situated.  Names of the parties and their respective shares need to be clearly mentioned. It must carry the date from which it will be effective.

How helpful is Family Settlement agreement?

Partitioning can take place through a family settlement agreement. It is drawn on the same lines as a partition deed but does not require any registration or stamp duty. It need not necessarily be a written document, can be oral based on mutual understanding.

How does division take place in the court?

A suit for partition is filed in the court which has the jurisdiction in the area where the property is located. The court determines the share of each person and estate is divided accordingly.  It is determined through various documents proving the title of the person.

What is the role of experts?

Partition of property is very technical subject. Generally, it is not very easy as the shares in the estate are not well defined.  A partition deed executed under expert guidance and legal advice helps to sail through such problems.