All of us deal with different types of documents on a regular basis. These documents can be your PAN card, Aadhar Card, Passport, Academic Certificates, Investment Documents (share certificates, Bonds etc), ‘Property Documents’ like Sale Deed, Mutation/Khatha Certificate etc.,
Losing or mis-placing any of these documents can have both monetary as well as non-monetary affect. Mis-placing the documents is not very uncommon.
But, what if you mis-place an important document like Sale Deed of your property and never found it? We all know how important Sale Deed is.. A sale deed has almost all the details required to carry out the purchase or sale of a property. Most importantly the sale deed would require the Owner to certify that the property under sale is free from any encumbrance and without any lien.
Without it, it is a daunting task to sell/buy a property and it is also very difficult to take a home loan on such property.
There are few instances where even Banks or lending institutions have misplaced the original documents of the property.
In this post, let’s discuss – How to get a certified copy of lost Property Documents like Sale Deed? What is the procedure to get duplicate Sale Deed? Can a property be registered if the seller does not have an original Sale Deed? Can anyone apply for a copy of Sale Deed of a property?
How to get a certified copy of lost Sale Deed?
Losing sensitive and valuable documents like a Registered Sale Deed can happen to anyone. So, what is the procedure to obtain a copy of lost Sale Deed? Below is the checklist of what you (owner of the property) have to do in case if you have misplaced the original property documents;
- File a police Complaint immediately:
- The first thing you need to do is to file FIR (First Information Report) in the nearest police station where you have lost your property documents.
- Kindly note that only owner of the property has to file FIR, stating that the property papers have been mis-placed or lost or stolen. Do give your Mobile number when registering the FIR so that you can track its status later online.
- You are advised to save a copy of the FIR for future use. The prospective buyer(s) of your property or bankers may ask for it in the future.
- Kindly note that the Supreme Court has recently ordered all Sates & Union Territories’ police departments to upload First Information Reports (FIRs) on police or government websites, within 24 hours of their registration in police stations. So, once you file FIR in any police station, you can view the FIR details and its Status online. For example; Below is the screen-print of Tamilnadu Police Dept portal home page.
- Apply for a Certified Copy of Sale Deed :
- You have to visit the Sub-Registrar office (SRO) where the property is registered and make an application to get a certified copy of Sale Deed.
- The Registration office has the scanned copy of your Sale Deed with them. But, they will generally not give a certified copy immediately.
- They will ask you to publish an advertisement in National and regional (local) newspaper about the loss of property documents (Sale deed).
- Place an Advertisement :
- You have to publish a ‘Lost & Found’ advertisement in both national and local newspaper, clearly mentioning the details of the lost Document and your contact details.
- It is a statutory requirement to publish an Ad. In certain cases, you may have to produce an affidavit or FIR to the newspaper agency before placing your Lost & Found advertisement.
- Below is a sample classified Ad;
- Remember to keep a copy of the complaint as well as the press clippings with you as proof of loss.
- After publishing the Ad, you may have to wait for 2 to 4 weeks to see if anyone finds your property documents and returns them within the stipulated time that you have mentioned in the AD.
- Prepare an Affidavit and get it Notarized: Even after waiting for say 10 to 15 days, if you do not find the lost documents, you can get an Affidavit prepared on Stamp paper. You have to clearly state the details of the lost sale deed & other documents, and sign the under-taking. You can attach the police FIR document and the copies of newspaper Ads to this Affidavit. The undertaking needs to be attested and registered with a Public Notary.
- Get the Duplicate Sale Deed from SRO: You have to pay the prescribed fee meant for this purpose at SRO. Enclose the police FIR document, copies of Ads & Affidavit along with the application for copy of Sale deed. The staff at SRO will verify these documents and issue you a legally certified copy of Sale Deed. Thereafter, certified copies of the Title deed are used as substitute for the original.
Property Documents lost / misplaced – FAQs
Below are some of the FAQs related to this topic;
- I have taken home loan and my Bank has mis-placed the original Sale Deed, what is the procedure to get duplicate Sale deed?
- Submit a written complaint to the bank and keep a copy of their reply with you.
- Register an FIR with the police against the Bank.
- Publish news-paper Ad.
- Get the Affidavit done by the Bank about the lost property documents.
- Do apply for encumbrance certificate to check if everything is fine with respect to ownership and mortgage details.
- Get the duplicate certified copy of Sale deed through your Banker/lending institution.
- You can ask the bank to bear all the associated costs.
- Can I buy a property without original sale deed? – If the deal is good and you do not want to miss buying such property, you can ask for the Certified copy of Sale deed, Police FIR document, copies of news paper Advertisements etc. from the Seller/owner of the property. Do take the latest EC to check for any discrepancies. Kindly take legal opinion and help from a civil lawyer before taking final decision. (Read : ‘All you need to know about EC‘)
- Can I get a Home loan if original Sale deed is missing? – Certified copy of sale deed can’t replace the original deed when it comes to raising loan over such property. Banks may ask for the Police FIR, certified copy of sale deed, affidavit etc., before issuing home loan.
- My Property is in Society or maintained by Association, do I need to inform them about the loss of property documents? – Yes,you have to inform them and also get NOC (No Objection Certificate) from them.
- Can anyone (non-owner) apply for a copy of sale deed? –
- There are conflicting views on this. I believe that as the documents registered at SRO comes under Public domain (except WILLS), so anyone can make an application for copy of Sale deed details at the concerned SRO. However, you may not get a certified copy.
- You have to give details like owner’s name, document number, property schedule info etc., to get copy of sale deed.
- Some states do provide Sale Deed details online (not copy of sale deed but only details of the Registration. Until last year, the AP registration dept used to provide copy of Sale Deeds online). For example – below is the screen-print of AP registration dept website, where-in you can get the Sale Deed or Registration details online. (Kindly click on the image to visit AP Registration dept portal)
- Some sub-registrars may issue copy of Sale deeds to the owners of the respective properties only, in such a case you may have to file an RTI application and get the required details.
A sale deed is one of the most valuable legal documents in the purchase or sale of a property. You might have genuinely lost or misplaced the property documents. But, don’t take this lightly, kindly file FIR immediately. Apply for the Certified copy of Sale Deed at the earliest. Be prepared to spend your time as well as good amount of money to get this done!
I hope you find this post useful. Do share your comments. Cheers!
(Post published on : 25-November-2016) (Featured Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)