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What is a property dispute in India?

What is a property dispute in India?

Published At May 6, 2024


A property dispute in India encompasses conflicts related to real estate ownership, possession and use. These disputes often arise due to various factors, including inheritance issues, illegal transfers, adverse possession, landlord-tenant conflicts and fraudulent sales.

  • Inheritance and Co-ownership Disputes: A significant number of property disputes occur among family members over inherited properties. These disputes can arise from disagreements on property division or denial of rightful ownership by other co-owners​.
  • Illegal Transfers and Fraud: Illegal property transfers, often involving forged documents or misuse of power of attorney, are prevalent issues. Fraudsters may fabricate wills or impersonate to sell property without authorization​.
  • Adverse Possession: This allows a person to claim ownership of the property if they have possessed it continuously and openly without the rightful owner’s challenge for a specific period, usually 12 years under the Limitation Act, 1963.​
  • Landlord-Tenant Disputes: Disputes between landlords and tenants, such as non-payment of rent or illegal subletting, are common. These issues can be addressed through registered rent agreements and legal action if necessary​.

Legal Resolution Mechanisms

  • Civil Courts: Most property disputes are adjudicated in civil courts. Plaintiffs can file a suit for declaration, possession, partition or injunction depending on the nature of the dispute. You must consult a property dispute lawyer India before filing a suit.
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR): Methods like mediation and arbitration are encouraged to settle property disputes out of court. The Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 provides the framework for such proceedings.
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