Legal Documentation


In a property transaction, property documents recording title of ownership to the seller and transfer of property to the new buyer are of paramount importance. Any defect in the property documents could lead to costly litigations or loss of money and property. Hence, it is important to engage an experienced Property Lawyer to verify property documents prior to the purchase of the property. In this article, we provide a checklist of property documents that must be verified before purchase of property in India.

Sale Deed of Property

A sale deed is an important legal document in a property document and is the primary document evidencing sale and transfer of ownership of property in favor of the buyer, from the seller. Further, a sale deed in the future acts as the main property document establishing title to the property for further sale by the buyer. The sale deed is normally executed after execution of a sale agreement if there is time between an agreement to purchase a property and transfer of title to the property. Sale deed must be registered in the local Sub-Registrar office in whose jurisdiction the property is located. All property sale deed must be registered within 4 months from the date of execution of the agreement to be valid.

Patta Certificate

Patta is a revenue record that is issued to the person in whose name the records related to said property are maintained. In most cases, Patta can be obtained from the Tehsildar’s office of the concerned administrative District. For land having several owners, there may be just one patta – as separate Pattas will not be issued.

Mutation Register Extract

Mutation extract contains details like previous owners, present owner, mode of acquisition of property, the total extent of property and order relating to the transfer of property. Mutation register is maintained by the Tehsildar’s Office of the concern administrative district. Mutation register extract is an important legal document, as it is used to establish the title of the land, if the property is located on converted land.

Property Tax Receipt

Property tax receipts are used to establish property details like area, owners name & other details related to property, as per Government revenue record. Usually, property tax receipts are issued by local municipality authority who maintain basic civic services in the city.

Encumbrance Certificate

Encumbrance certificate can be obtained from the Sub-Registrar office, which operates under the Inspector of Registration of Properties, operated by the State Government. The Encumbrance certificate is used to establish property transactions like sale, purchase, mortgage – relating to the property in a given period of time. The Encumbrance certificate is thus used by the buyer to know the detail of all property transactions to date.

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