The Most Common Types of Property Disputes
July 31, 2022
A property dispute is a legal dispute regarding real estate, these are generally intense as the property disputes affect a lot of other activities. The property regarding which the disputes arise can be the ancestral or self-acquired home, company building, pond, roads, or a plot of land. Property disputes can usually arise between neighbors, companies, governments, between brothers, trespassers, property visitors, landlords, and tenants, the disputes related to property arise due to several reasons including partition issues, usurpation of property, ownership, and possession of the property and several other reasons.
Several common property disputes will be discussed further in this article with their probable solutions and legal actions.
Breach of Contract or Delay in performance of the obligation
Breach of contract can be a very usual form of property dispute wherein a party does not fulfill her/his obligations as per the sale deed, or property transfer agreement as made under the Transfer of Property Act, 1882, or the rent agreement made between the tenant and the landlord. The remedies are available in case of breach of contract as compensatory remedies, specific performance, recession, injunction, and so on. In the property dispute generally, compensatory remedies, specific performance, and injunctions can be used by the court.
For instance, in a case A buys property from B and the payment is done but B hasn’t transferred the ownership of property yet, here a suit for specific performance can be filed to transfer the ownership to A.
In a case of breach of contract, a suit can be filed with a civil court having jurisdiction based on the facts and circumstances of the case. In case of delay in performance compensatory remedy or specific performance can be sought by the consumer or the buyer, and a complaint can also be filed in the consumer court.
Boundary disputes usually arise between the neighbors relating to the property line and the responsibility to repair, these issues arise when the property boundaries are not demarcated properly and are not registered. In such cases, a suit for declaration can be filed in a civil court having jurisdiction as per the procedure mentioned in the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. The courts will examine all the details and evidence and a decree will be passed accordingly.
Tenant Dispute With Landlord
The disputes between the landlord and tenant arise related to the responsibility of repairing, ownership, or rightful entitlement of the property. These disputes can easily be prevented by signing a well-drafted rent agreement, in case a rent agreement is not signed these disputes are capable to be solved amicably through private settlement and conversation between the landlord and tenants. If nothing works out the parties are entitled to approach a civil court having jurisdiction.
The issue arises in one scenario where the tenant has lived for over 12 years without any kind of objection raised by the landlord, the tenant is entitled to file a suit for declaration of having entitlement over the property or landlord.
Ownership and Co-Owner Disputes
Ownership disputes simply mean the dispute regarding the ownership of the property, these can arise if the title of the ownership was not transferred to the purchaser, and the deed was not executed properly. The only way to resolve the dispute regarding the rightful owner of the property is to approach the court and then the court after scrutinizing all the evidence and details will declare the owner of the property.
Co-owner disputes arise in case of disagreement between the owners regarding a decision, it can be related to selling the property or making it better, or investing in it. These disputes can easily be solved with a conversation and there is no such need to approach the civil court.
Real Estate Fraud or Misrepresentation by the Owner
These scams are very common and the real estate agent can defraud the customer by misrepresenting the details of the property, concealment of some material facts, and details that can affect the purchase of the property if revealed. In several instances the real estate agent is fake and their only work is to defraud the customer. Along with the real estate agents, there are instances where the owner of the property misrepresents or conceals some material facts. Since in these cases the consent is not free which is an essential of a valid contract the contract becomes voidable on the part of the buyer.
These disputes can be prevented if real caution is exercised during the purchase and thorough research is conducted. The buyer is entitled to sue the owner or the real estate agent in a civil court as well as in a criminal court if the guilty intention was present.
Family Disputes Over Property
The most common property-related disputes are within the families over the distribution of property, the distribution of property in a family is done either as per the will or if the person has died intestate as per the personal laws as per the religion to the dead belonged. Although the laws and the distribution pattern in the case of intestate succession are somewhat different in every religion the suit for declaration as a successor of the property, suit for partition, or regarding any dispute in the property is filed in the civil court having jurisdiction and the case is decided as per the provisions of the personal laws.
There is an alternative called family settlement which can resolve the conflict without any need to approach the court. A family settlement is a mutual agreement between family members relating to the distribution of property assets including all the movable as well as immovable property. The family settlement including the immovable property shall be registered according to the provisions of the Registration Act, 1908.
Trespass means entering the property of the other individual without obtaining permission which infringes the legal right of that individual. Trespass is a tort and a criminal offense under section 441 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 if the trespasser had entered the property to cause harm, the plaintiff can file a plaint for damages under tort or can file a criminal case under the Indian Penal Code as well. This comes under property dispute as it is related to the unauthorized entrance into the property of the owner.
Mediation and Property Disputes
The cases related to property disputes constitute more than half (66%) of the burden of pending cases for the Indian Judiciary which urgently calls for a viable alternative to resolve these property disputes. Mediation can prove to be a good and effective alternative to litigation in case of property disputes as these disputes are capable to be resolved through settlement. The mediator can initiate the conversation between the parties and can supervise it to ensure the process gets completed without any kind of trouble.
Mediation as a mechanism of alternative dispute resolution is very economical and fast which takes a lot less time and capital as compared to the method of litigation and resolves the disputes in no time.
How can WeVaad help?
WeVaad is an online dispute resolution platform that delivers services related to alternative dispute resolutions viz, arbitration, conciliation, and mediation. We have legal experts with over seven years of experience, who can assist you as a mediator and work with you to resolve your property disputes.