How are prop­er­ties of men­tally chal­lenged peo­ple man­aged?

Ac­cord­ing to the Men­tal Health Act, managers can be ap­pointed to take care of such prop­er­ties

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - Su­nil Tyagi

Men­tal dis­or­ders some­times af­fect peo­ple’s de­ci­sion-mak­ing ca­pac­i­ties. A per­son of un­sound mind is not con­sid­ered to be com­pe­tent enough to en­ter into a con­tract be­cause he is in­ca­pable of un­der­stand­ing the trans­ac­tion and its prob­a­ble con­se­quences. A con­tract of sale like any other con­tract would be in­valid if the con­sent of ei­ther party is given by a per­son of un­sound mind. There have been in­stances when peo­ple have been in­ter­ested in buy­ing prop­er­ties that be­longed to a per­son who was men­tally chal­lenged or in­ca­pac­i­tated. So, what is the sta­tus of such a prop­erty and t he per­son who would be en­ti­tled to en­ter into a con­tract for the sale of the prop­erty which is held in the name of a per­son suf­fer­ing from men­tal ill­ness? The Men­tal Health Act, 1987, makes pro­vi­sions with re­spect to tak­ing care of the es­tate of a per­son who is men­tally chal­lenged - some­one who needs treat­ment for his or her men­tal dis­or­der. It is im­por­tant to clar­ify here that a men­tally ill per­son does not in any way mean or in­clude a men­tally re­tarded per­son.

Where an al­leged men­tally chal­lenged per­son owns prop­erty, any of his rel­a­tives may come for­ward with an ap­pli­ca­tion to the dis­trict court for hold­ing an in­quiry re­gard­ing his men­tal con­di­tion for the ap­point­ment of some­one to man­age his or her prop­erty. On the re­ceipt of such an ap­pli­ca­tion, the con­cerned dis­trict court within the lo­cal lim­its of whose ju­ris­dic­tion the men­tally ill per­son re­sides, takes ap­pro­pri­ate steps for ini­ti­at­ing a ju­di­cial in­quiry re­gard­ing the men­tal con­di­tion of the al­leged men­tally chal­lenged per­son.

After con­duct­ing such an in­ves­ti­ga­tion, in case the dis­trict court or the col­lec­tor of the dis­trict con­firms that the per­son is men­tally chal­lenged and in­ca­pable of managing the prop­er­ties, it can ap­point a suit­able per­son as a man­ager for the prop­erty in ques­tion.

The man­ager ap­pointed has t he same pow­ers with re­gard to the man­age­ment of the prop­erty of the men­tally chal­lenged owner would have en­joyed. The man­ager has the power to ex­e­cute con­veyance on be­half of the owner after ob­tain­ing prior per­mis­sion of the court. In case the man­ager wishes to ex­e­cute mort­gage or lease of such prop­erty for more than five years, then he has to ob­tain an or­der from the court be­fore sign­ing the mort­gage deed/lease deed in lieu of the men­tally ill per­son.

In a sit­u­a­tion, where a per­son en­ters into a con­tract to sell the prop­erty owned by him and is later un­able to ful­fil the con­tract owing to his men­tal ill­ness; the court may direct the any­one en­ters into any con­tract with re­spect to the prop­erty owned by a per­son suf­fer­ing from men­tal ill­ness.

Yes, you can claim HRA ex­emp­tion from your salary on the rent be­ing paid by you to your mother. Make sure that the rent is paid ev­ery month just as it would be if it were a non-rel­a­tive land­lord. The rent would be tax­able in case of your mother. You can­not get any tax de­duc­tion on the re­pay­ment made on the home loan since the prop­erty is not owned by you.

I am look­ing to pur­chase a 3BHK prop­erty in NCR. There are three op­tions avail­able to me: full ad­vance pay­ment plan, con­struc­tion-linked plan and sub­ven­tion plan with no in­ter­est for two years. What are the ad­van­tages? —Pu­ran Singh

I wish to shift my home loan to an­other bank. What are the ad­van­tages of shift­ing the loan?

—Sab­hy­ata Gupta You should shift your loan only if the new bank is of­fer­ing you lower rates of in­ter­est and the cost of shift­ing (in this case it is the 0.20% mort­gage fees plus a small ad­min­is­tra­tive charge) is enough to jus­tify the ben­e­fit. Where float­ing or fixed rates are con­cerned, in the cur­rent en­vi­ron­ment when in­ter­est rates are ex­pected to go down, it makes no sense to lock into a fixed rate.

I had taken a home loan worth ₹ 7 lakh from a bank at a float­ing rate of in­ter­est 10.75%. The bank had promised re­bate if I paid up some amount ini­tially. Should I do it?

—Suneet Shah In In­dia un­for­tu­nately float­ing rate loans mean that the rate floats up­wards when in­ter­est rates rise but they don’t go down when in­ter­est rates drop. Under pres­sure from the mar­ket len­ders “al­low” you to shift to the new lower float­ing rate on pay­ment of a fees. So by pay­ing about 0.28% of the out­stand­ing loan amount you should be able to shift to the new rate of 9.90%.

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