LAW BOOK

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - Su­nil Tyagi

the child was adopted after the death of his adop­tive mother’s hus­band and the prop­erty had al­ready de­volved upon the other le­gal heirs of the de­ceased fa­ther, the adopted child would not be en­ti­tled to a share in such prop­erty that had al­ready de­volved.

Se­condly, the adopted child re­tains the right to prop­erty that was trans­ferred to him/her be­fore he/she was adopted. The Act has clar­i­fied that if a child has been adopted, it does not mean that the child is de­nied rights over the prop­erty that he/she in­her­ited or ac­quired prior to adop­tion from his/her bi­o­log­i­cal par­ent( s) or other fam­ily mem­bers.

For in­stance, take the case of A (a Hindu male) and his late wife A1 had two sons, B and C. C was given in adop­tion by A to X after A1’s death, which meant that C would not be en­ti­tled to in­herit prop­erty from A as his son. How­ever, as C’s mother had died prior to the adop­tion, C was en­ti­tled to a share (along with A and B) in the prop­erty left by A1. That share which had al­ready been vested in C, would con­tinue to vest in him. It was clar­i­fied that C was not en­ti­tled to in­herit from A as his son as after adop­tion he be­came a part of the adopted fam­ily.

Se­condly, the adopted child re­tains the right to prop­erty that was trans­ferred to him/ her be­fore he/she was adopted. The Act has clar­i­fied that if a child has been adopted, it does not mean that he/she is de­nied rights over the prop­erty that he/she in­her­ited or ac­quired prior to adop­tion from his/her bi­o­log­i­cal par­ent( s) or other fam­ily mem­bers. I have taken a shop/store on lease in a shop­ping com­plex in Delhi. As per the lease deed I have been given a rent-free pe­riod of three months to com­plete fitouts in the shop and com­mence store op­er­a­tions. I have been un­able to com­plete the fitouts. Am I still li­able to pay rent?

— San­tosh Sharma This de­pends on the terms of the lease deed. If it is pro­vided that de­spite non com­ple­tion of fitouts and non com­mence­ment of store op­er­a­tions within the rent free pe­riod, rent shall com­mence on ex­piry of the rent-free pe­riod, then you shall be li­able to pay rent after ex­piry of rent­free pe­riod ir­re­spec­tive of non-com­ple­tion of fitouts and non com­mence­ment of store op­er­a­tions.

I own a house in Gur­gaon. Since I don’t have chil­dren, I wish to gift the house to my niece. Is there any stamp duty ex­emp­tions for the same?

—Mo­hit Sinha As per no­ti­fi­ca­tion passed by the Haryana gov­ern­ment in July 2014, stamp duty payable on trans­fer of prop­erty by an owner to any blood re­la­tion (i.e fa­ther, mother, chil­dren, grand­chil­dren, brother(s), sis­ter(s) and be­tween spouse) has been ex­empted. Since your niece does not come under the def­i­ni­tion of blood re­la­tion there is no ex­emp­tion to­wards the stamp duty levi­able on the gift deed ex­e­cuted by you in her favour.

I have taken a house on lease for a term of five years. The lease deed con­tains a clause that the rent shall not be es­ca­lated by the lessor, be­fore the ex­piry of three years from the com­mence­ment of lease. How­ever, the lessor is now de­mand­ing in­creased rent after only one year from the com­mence­ment of the lease. Can the lessor uni­lat­er­ally in­crease the rent?

— Tarun Gau­tam In the lease deed, since the lessor and you have ex­plic­itly stated that rent for the prop­erty shall not be li­able to be in­creased for the ini­tial three years of the term of lease, the lessor is not en­ti­tled to uni­lat­er­ally de­mand a higher rent, un­less you along with the lessor agree to the re­vi­sion of rent in writ­ing.

I re­cently pur­chased a flat in Delhi and be­fore ex­e­cu­tion of sale deed, I had gone through all the pre­vi­ous ti­tle doc­u­ments as shown by the seller to make sure that the house did not have any ti­tle de­fects. After reg­is­tra­tion of sale deed, I dis­cov­ered that there is bank charge on the prop­erty. Can bank en­force the charge against me?

— Re­wal Sahni As per the ap­pli­ca­ble law, a bank has right to en­force charge over the prop­erty de­spite it be­ing sold to you. How­ever, the seller is duty bound to dis­close de­fects in ti­tle if any to a buyer. You may ini­ti­ate civil and crim­i­nal pro­ceed­ings against him for the same.

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