Here are the guidelines to follow while transferring a flat in a cooperative housing society- CHS to a legal heir or nominee
From the days of “ek bangla bane nyara”, a large part of our society, especially in cities, has come to comfortably adopt a lifestyle based on nuclear families with a rise in the demand and ownership of flats and such property. However, more often than not, due to the sheer complicity and technicalities of our legal system, we find ourselves trampled by a load of complicated questions and even cheating and deception. One such area of concern is 'transmission of flats'. Here, we have the procedure for the same simplified for you.
Earlier, flats were generally purchased by an individual, usually the male member of the family, who used to be the earning member. However, with the rise in the prices of property, the trends have undergone a change now. These days we find that flats are usually purchased in the joint name of husband and wife. In such a case, if percentage of share in purchasing the flat is not stated, it is assumed that both of them have equal shares in the ownership of the flat.
In the above scenario, a share certificate is issued in the joint name of the husband and wife, as a joint ownership. As per existing Bye-laws, the person whose name does not stand first in the share certificate becomes an 'Associate Member'. In case of death of the person named first in the share certificate, the Associate Member retains the right on his/her flat since his/her name exists in the Sale Deed of the flat as a joint buyer.
When flats are bought jointly, the joint owner can make a will bequeathing his/her part of the flat to the other joint owner. Thus, in case of death of anyone of them, the one surviving joint owner will get an absolute right on the jointly owned flat (provided, the due process of the law is followed).
Transmission of flats happens in the following two ways:
- When the flat owner has made a nomination before death.
- When the flat owner has not made any nomination before death.
The word nominee means a person who holds or acquire right, property or any other kind of liability incurred on behalf of others. Nominee means a trustee. A nominee holds a property on behalf of other legal heirs.
Thus, the simple meaning derived from above proposition is that a nominee cannot be a real owner but, in fact a trustee who has legal control of property that is kept or invested for another person, company or organization.
Procedure for nomination:
The procedure for nomination by a member of co-operative society is provided in bye laws of the cooperative Housing society, bye law no. 32, which runs as under:
“A member of the society may by writing under his hand in the prescribed form, nominate a person or persons to who the whole or part of the shares and /or interest of the members in the capital/property of the society shall be transferred in the event of his/her death.”
Further no fees shall be charged for recording the first nomination.
- A members may revoke or vary his nomination, at any time, by making an application, in writing under his hand to the to the secretary of the society.
- Every nomination made, shall be recorded in register of nomination “within 7 clear days’’ from the date on which resolution to accept the nomination was recorded in minutes of managing committee.
- Every fresh nomination shall be changed a fee of Rs100
Transfer of shares/of interest on event of death of member to a nominee:
It is clearly provided in section 30 of the Maharashtra co-operative societies act, 1960 (Act no. XXIV of 1961 Mah) that, on the death of a member of society, the society shall transfer the share or interest of the deceased member to person or persons nominated in accordance with the rules and byelaws.
Analysis of section 30
A nominee comes into picture only on death of the member. The society shall transfer the shares of the deceased member to nominated person.
Whether it is advisable to make a nominee in case of joint ownership of flats?
The object behind nomination is to avoid confusion in case there are disputes between the heirs and legal representatives and to obviate the necessity of obtaining legal representation and to avoid uncertainties as to with whom the society should deal to get proper discharge. Nomination does not create a new rule of succession.
Therefore, it is highly advisable to make a nomination in case of joint ownership of a flat. In case of a simultaneous death of both the joint owners, the flat is rendered intestate. The due process of law has to be followed to transmit such a flat in the name of the legatee. An appointed nominee and a will (of a joint owner bequeathing his/her ownership in the name of the other joint owner) can go a long way in avoiding unnecessary confusion and ambiguities. In a case where both nomination and Will is prepared, the Will will prevail over the nomination paper.
Procedure to follow for transmission when nomination is made by the flat owner
(1) The form of application for membership in Appendix-15, by the nominee/ nominees [ under Bye-law No. 34] with Rs100 entrance fee.
(2) If nominee has no independent income source, an undertaking on Rs100 Non-Judicial Stamp Paper, in Appendix-5 will be furnished by a person who is a close relative and an earning member and who is ready to discharge the liabilities of the prospective nominee-member to the Society. [ under Bye-law No.19(A) (v)]
(3) If there are more than one nominee, an indemnity on Rs200 Non-Judicial Stamp Paper is to be submitted by the prospective nominee-member, in Appendix-18. [ under Bye-law No.34 ]
(Note: This indemnity is to be given, only if one of the nominees become member of the society. If first named nominee becomes a member of the Society and all other nominees become joint associate members, this indemnity need not be given.)
(4) Undertaking on Rs100 Non-Judicial Stamp Paper to be submitted by the prospective nominee-member, in Appendix-4. [ under Bye-law No.17(b) and 19(A)(iv) ]
(5) Copy of the Nomination Form in Appendix-14, of the deceased member. [ under Bye-law no.34 ]
(6) Attested Xerox copy of the Death Certificate of the deceased member. [ under Bye-law no.34 ]
(7) Xerox copy of the Share Certificate of the deceased member, with undertaking on the Xerox copy, that original share certificate will be produced by the member, as and when asked by the Secretary for making the name change by the Society.
(8) If nominee-member wants to make one of his relatives an associate member, simultaneously with him, he needs to apply by filling the form in Appendix-8, with Rs100 entrance fee for the Associate Member. [ under Bye-law No. 19(B) ]
(9) If the nominee already possesses another flat in the same society, then to hold an additional flat, an application in Appendix-28, has to be made by the nominee-member. [ under Bye-law No. 62 ]
(10) Nomination to be made by the nominee-member, in Appendix-14, in triplicate. [ under Bye-law No.32 ]
(NOTE: This is also applicable, to the case, when no nomination is made, as given below...
(1) All forms and papers as stated above are to be submitted in a file to the Society's office.
(2) All dues of the Society and the deceased member in arrears and also future dues for the following six months have to be paid by the nominator member at the time of submitting the membership application.
(3) All stamp papers are to be purchased in user's name.
(4) Entrance fees, as in Sr. No.(1) and (8) have to be paid along with dues, at the time of submitting of the forms to the society.
(5) If the Society does not inform you of any objection within 90 days of submitting of your application for your membership, then under Section 22(2) of Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960, you become a deemed member of the Society. To confirm your deemed membership, you have to make an appeal to your Deputy Registrar, to take a hearing and pass an order under section 22(2), to confirm your membership by the society.)
Procedure to follow for transmission when no nomination is made by the flat owner or when no nominee is ready to accept the membership of the society
In such a case, if there is a dispute among the relatives of the deceased, the Society will demand Succession Certificate from the the relatives of the deceased. Negligible Court Fee has to be paid for the same, in the light of judgement delivered by the Bombay High Court, in case of Testamentary Petition No595 of 2005, Yallappagauda Shankar Rao v/s Smt. Yallappagauda Manjunatha Rao.
When there is no dispute, following papers are to be submitted:
(1) Application for membership by an heir of the deceased member, in Appendix-17, with Rs100 entrance fee. [under Bye-law No.35]
(2) If the heir does not have an independent source of income, an undertaking by an earning member and relative of the heir, who is ready to pay all Society's due of the heir has to be made on Rs100 Non-judicial Stamp Paper.
(2) The heir has to give an indemnity on Rs200 Non-Judicial Stamp Paper, in Appendix-19. [ under Bye-law no.35 ]
(3) The heir has to give an undertaking on Rs100 Non-Judicial Stamp Paper, in Appendix-4. [under the bye-law no. 17(b) and 19(A)(iv) ]
(4) CHS will display the notice in Appendix-16 in its notice board, send a copy to every member of the Society and will publish it in two local news papers having wide publicity, one in local language and one in English. Any claim from the public has to come within a period of 15 days from the date of publication of the notice. [ under Bye-law no.35 ]
(5) Follow points (6) to (10) as mentioned above in the case where nomination is made.
(Note: The heir has to take a Xerox copy of the notice published in all the news papers as proof of publication in the newspapers and among the members of the said CHS. These are to be submitted to the Society, as a proof of publication in the papers.)
He will then submit his papers to CHS, only after the period stated in the newspaper has expired.
What is CHS and Transmission?
Cooperative Housing Society (CHS):
According to Section 2(16) of The Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act “Co-operative Housing Society” means a society the object of which is to provide its members with open plots for housing, dwelling houses or flats; or if open plots, the dwelling houses or flats as already acquired to provide its members common amenities and services.
The right which heirs or legatees may have of passing to their successors the inheritance or legacy to which they were entitled, if the owner happen to die without having exercised their rights.
Transmission of flats:
Transmission in case of flats is possible only for the flats owned by individuals. If flat is held by a body corporate, transmission is impossible, since body corporate has no death.
A body corporate means any entity that has its separate legal existence apart from the persons forming it. It enjoys a completely different legal status apart from its members. So, a body corporate shall include: a company, a foreign company, a corporation, a statutory company, a statutory body, an LLP, etc. and such bodies that have separate legal existence.
Even after the death of all the partners or directors of a company/firm, the company/firm does not die.
(Shirish S Shanbhag, an MSc and a retired professor with over 32 years of experience, helps draft legal documentation related to co-operative societies, RTI and several other areas.)