Rules of Property Ownership in India – Deciding the Name of the Owner Requires Special Attention

Deciding the name of the owner of the property can be complex task. From the following discussions you can have an insight on the rules regarding inheritance of a property in India.

Individual ownership

It means a single person has the authority to sign a deed to sell, rent, or lease a property and no one else can do the same with the property.

Normally, there is no chance of conflict in transaction of individual ownership properties. But the owner’s not staying in the same town may lead to a trouble. In such cases a power of attorney may be given to a trustworthy person to handle and take decision on the property related issues.
The owner can decide his successor of the property and make a will in favor of the successor accordingly.

The religion may influence the personal law, which comes into the force in case of non-availability of a will, and it is better to consult a lawyer to be clear about the merits and the demerits of such laws.

The different religions come under different Succession Acts. The Indian Succession Act describes the laws related to the Christians, Jews, and the Parsees, where as the Hindu Succession Act says about the laws applicable to the Buddhists, Jains, and the Hindus. According to the Muslim law, however, the owner has the right to give only one-third of his property to the successor and the rest will go as per the Muslim law which has further divisions according to different sects.

Joint ownership

In Joint ownership any one of the owners has the right to decide on a property, and it eliminates the need of a power of attorney if one of the owners is absent. The surviving owner becomes the sole owner of the property in case of the death of the other owner. Therefore, the survivor ship and the security come automatically. Even not making a will make no difference in Joint ownership.
In Joint ownership the signature of both the owners is must to sell or taking their names off the property. Therefore it is difficult to revert the decision of having sole ownership after making a Joint ownership deed.

In case of a permanent split like divorce, each owner will have an equal share of the property. But if the property is purchased or built on the investment of one of the owners then the person can suit a case showing all details of his or her investment asking for the sole ownership of the property in the court.

Co-ownership

Co-ownership ensures the relevant share of the property out of the investments of each owner. Therefore, having co-ownership for a property is a wise decision if two people are investing for the same. The share of the property may depend upon the investments of the co-owners. If the percentage of ownership is not specified in a co-owners deed, the equal share will go to each owner.

Each of the co-owners can have a separate agreement of co-ownership stating his/her share on the property which helps to avoid the legal complications in case of separation between the co-owners, and each of the owners can decide their successors for their respective shares.

Nomination

This option is meant for the apartments in co-operative societies. The nominee can never be proclaimed as an owner. In case of the death of the original owner, until and unless the nominee is mentioned as a successor, he or she cannot become owner of the property.
A nominee becomes a member of the society and a nominal owner after the death of the owner, but the person named in the will becomes the beneficial owner.

Lessons to be learned

It is wise to draw up a will immediately after you own a property.

You can give the power of attorney to a reliable person for your individually own property.

Please have wise thoughts before making somebody a joint-owner.

Having co-ownership is a wise decision for your investment toward buying a property.

Draw up a will naming the successor of your share in case of co-ownership.

It is always better to draw up separate wills naming the successor even if the co-owners decide to give their share to the same individual.

In Goa, as per Portuguese law, the wife holds the ownership of the 50% of her husband’s property and vice versa.