Documents are the record of various transactions; they contain certain terms, conditions, consideration amount, names of the parties to the transaction, date of the transaction, clear and complete description of the subject of transaction, so as to make them easily identified. For example, 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, construction and boundaries. They are the permanent records, which are relied on for generations. Such documents must be legible, clear, readable, free of error and should not create any doubts or disputes. They reflect the terms of transaction for which both the parties have freely consented.
It is always advisable to prepare draft copies of the document for verification by both the parties in case of agreements and understanding. However, the sale deed should be in favour of purchaser since the vendor receives the consideration. He has to safe guard the purchasers interest in the property to be purchased. Any additions, deletions, alterations in the draft copies should be discussed by both the parties and another draft copy as agreed by both the parties is to be prepared.
The second draft copy has to be vetted by legal advisers to ensure that it complies with legal, statutory requirements. Thereafter only the final deeds are to be prepared. As for as possible, additions, alterations, cancellations should be avoided.
But at times, some additions, alterations, cancellations are inevitable which are discovered at the time of execution. All such alterations, cancellations, additions are to be done before presenting the document for registration. All such modifications should be authenticated by full signature of all the parties to the document. But signature of witness is not necessary for such modifications. Only full signature and not initials or short signature should be affixed. For cancellation, the original words should be neatly struck off. It should be signed by the parties to the document. Erasing fluid should not be used. Registering authority records such additions, alterations, cancellations pagewise on the document itself. This validates the additions, alterations, cancellation etc. Any modification done after registration is not valid and does not form a part of the document. More over the document itself becomes 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 and full signature of all the parties are obtained to the transaction. If anything has to be changed after registration a separate rectification deed has to be executed.
Filling up blanks:
Some documents may have blanks as the required information will be available only at the time of execution. Often, date of execution is left blank, until the date is finalised. Details of the demand drafts, cheques like number, name of Bank, Branch are also left blank. All such blanks have to be filled up before presenting the document for registration and should be authenticated by all the parties to the document or executor with full signature.
Attestation means witnessing the documents. Certain documents like will, agreement to sale, sale deed require attestation. Execution of the documents should be witnessed by two persons, who are major and of sound mind. Both the witness should affix their full signature and should furnish their address. Attestation is not necessary in case of certain documents.
There are many people who cannot sign. Thumb impression of such people are 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 ---------------- 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.