Additions Alterations and Cancellations to Property Documents

Documents are the records of various transactions; they contain various terms, conditions, consideration amount, and names of the parties to the transaction, date of the transaction, clear and complete description of the subject of transaction, so that they can be easily identified; for example, a sale deed of a property contains the origin, flow of the title, present status, names of seller and purchaser, consideration amount, easementary right and brief description of the property with measurement, construc¬tion and boundaries. They are the perma¬nent records, which are relied on for generations. Such documents must be legible, clear, readable, and free of error and should not create any doubts or disputes. They reflect the terms of transaction for which both the parties have freely con¬sented.

At times, some additions, alterations, cancellations are inevitable, which are noticed at the time of execution. Any such alterations, cancellations, additions have to be done before presenting the document for registration. All such modifications should be authenticated through signatures of all the parties to the documents. But signature of witness is not necessary for verifying such modifications. Only full signatures and not initials or short signatures should be made. For cancellations, the original words should be neatly struck off; it should be signed by parties to the document and Erasing fluid should not be used. Registering authority records such additions, alterations, cancellations page wise on the document itself. This validates the additions, alterations, cancellation etc.; any modifications done after registration are not valid and do not form a part of the document, more over the document itself become invalid. Copies of the registered documents are maintained at registering offices and certified copies issued by such authorities also record on certified copies the number of cancellations, additions and alterations done before registration. They do not contain anything added, deleted, modified after registration; so proper care should be taken so that all modifications are done before registration under the full signatures of all the parties to the transac¬tions. If anything has to be changed after registration then a separate rectification deed has to be executed.

Filling up blanks :
Some documents may have unfilled blank spaces as the required information will be available only at the time of execution. Often date of execution is left blank, until the date is finalized. The details of demand drafts, cheque number, name of Bank, Branch are also left blank. All such blank spaces have to be filled up before presenting the document for registration and should be authenticated by all the parties to the document or executor under full signature.

Attestation :
Attestation means witnessing the documents. Certain documents like will, agreement to sale, sale deeds etc. require attestation. Execution of the documents should be witnessed by two persons, who are major and of sound mind. Both the witnesses should affix their full signature and should furnish their address. Attestation is not necessary in case of certain documents.

Thumb Impression :
There are many people who cannot sign; Thumb impression of such people is taken for execution of documents instead of signature. Left hand thumb impression (LTM) in case of males and Right hand Thumb Impressions (RTM) in case of females have to be obtained on documents for execution. Brief description “LTM or RTM of Sri/Smt…………………” has to be written immediately below the thumb impression. As the persons who affix thumb impression are illiterate, who cannot read or write the entire contents of the documents should be read over and explained to them and a separate note to that effect has to be annexed to the document preferably signed by an Advocate.

Possession of property :
It is very important that the transferor transfers possession of the property in favour of the transferee. It is not necessary that actual physical possession has to be handed over to the transferee, but even grant of constructive possession will transfer and create right and interest over the property in favour of the transferee