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The Indian Registration Act, The Registration (Karnataka Amendment) Act 1975, The Karnataka Registration Rules 1965, govern the registration of documents. Every person may have to visit the office of registration for registering documents at least once in his lifetime, but provisions of Registration Act remain unknown to common public. This article discusses certain provisions, rules of registration.


Our country is a land of many languages and there is no restriction as to which language should be used in writing the documents. But it is also not possible for the registering officer to know all languages. Section 19 of Indian Registration Act states that if any document in a language which is not understood by the registering officer and is a language not commonly used in the registering district, the registration may be refused, unless such document is accompanied by a true translation into a language commonly used in district and also a true copy.

Karnataka Registration Rule No.11 has recognised following languages in districts and sub districts;

Kannada and English - All districts and sub districts in the State. Telugu - Bellary district Marathi - District of Belgaum, Bijapur, Dharwad and North Karnataka and Sub-districts of Alland, Bidar, Gulbarga. Urdu - Districts of Bidar, Gulbarga, Raichur

Time for presenting the documents

The Act provides as to by which time, the documents should be presented for registration. Every document has to be presented for registration within four months from the date of execution as per section 23. The only exception is Will.

But if the document has to be executed by several persons and each person executes at different times, such document has to be presented for registration and re-registration within four month from the date of each execution.

However, the registration of documents presented after the expiry of four months is allowed on payment of fine as follows as per Section 5 of Indian Registration Act and Rule No.52 of Karnataka Registration Rules.

a) Where the delay does not exceed one week Fine equal to registration fee b) Where delay exceeds one week but does not exceed one calendar month Fine equal to twice the registration fee c) Where the delay exceeds one month but not two months Fine equal to five times of registration fee. d) Where the delay exceeds two months but does not exceed four months Fine equal to ten times of registration fee. Where delay exceeds four months from the date of execution registration is not allowed. The fine is payable is in addition to regular registration fee.

Place for registering the documents

The documents which affect immovable property have to be presented for registration at the office of the sub registrar of the district in whose jurisdiction whole or a portion of such property falls as per section 28 and other documents not affecting the immovable property or copy of decree or order may be presented in any office of sub registrar in whose sub district the document was executed or in the office of any other sub-registrar under the State Government at which all persons executing and claiming under the document prefer. The decree or order may also be presented for registration in the office of the sub-registrar in whose sub-district the original decree or order was made (Sec.28, 29).

Time from which registered document operates

A document which is registered shall be operative from the date of execution or from the date from which it was to operate as disclosed in the document and not from the date of registration (Sec 47).

All registered documents other than Will relating to movable and immovable property shall have priority over oral agreements or declaration in connection with such property. But if such oral agreement or declaration is coupled by delivery of possession of the property and such possession constitutes a valid transfer under any law for the time being in force, such oral agreement or declaration has priority over registered documents.

A Will made subsequent to earlier registered Will have priority over earlier made and registered Will.

A mortgage by deposit of title deeds shall have priority over any mortgage deed subsequently executed and registered, when both relate to the same property (Sec.48).

Duties of Registering Officer

The Registering officer has to endorse the time, hour and place of registration and also the signature of the person presenting the document for registration on every document so presented and shall also be receipted. Every person who executes any document has to admit such execution at the registering office either personally or through his duly appointed agent and shall endorse such admission of execution. The endorsement shall contain the particulars such as signature and addition of the person admitting the execution, the signature and addition of any agent admitting the execution, the signature and addition of every person examined in reference to such document under any provisions of the Registration Act, payments and delivery of any goods made in the presence of the registering officer connected to the document presented for registration, admission of receipt of consideration in full or in part made in the presence or registering officer.

If any person admits the execution but refuses to endorse, the registering office shall register the document, but shall endorse the fact of refusal. The provisions of admitting the execution and endorsement does not apply to copy of decree or order and documents sent to registering officer under special provisions provided in Sec. 89 of the Act (Sec.58). All such endorsements shall be signed and dated by the registering officer.

After completion of process of registration the registering officer shall endorse a certificate on the document with the word "Registered" together with number and details of storage of the document. The certificate of registration has to be signed, dated and sealed by the registering officer (Sec. 60).