SC: No registration is necessary if a document is only a memorandum of family settlement

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, on 31st July 2020, in the matter of Ravinder Kaur Grewal & Ors. v. Manjit Kaur & Ors. observed that no registration is necessary if a document is only a memorandum of family settlement and not a document containing the terms and recitals of a family settlement.

The Hon’ble Supreme Court observed that:

No registration is necessary if a document is only a memorandum of family settlement and not a document containing the terms and recitals of a family settlement. (This inference has been Para 14)

When by virtue of a family settlement or arrangement, members of a family descending from a common ancestor or a near relation seek to sink their differences and disputes, settle and resolve their conflicting claims or disputed titles once and for all in order to buy peace of mind and bring about complete harmony and goodwill in the family, such arrangement ought to be governed by a special equity peculiar to them and would be enforced if honestly made. (Para 16)

The object of such arrangement is to protect the family from long drawn litigation or perpetual strives which mar the unity and solidarity of the family and create hatred and bad blood between the various members of the family. (Para 16)

a memorandum of family settlement is not required to be registered and in any case a party to it is estopped from resiling from the stated arrangement in the subject memorandum, which had recorded the settlement terms arrived at in the past and even acted upon relating to all the existing or future disputes qua the subject property amongst the (signatories) family members despite absence of antecedent title to the concerned property. (This inference has been drawn on the basis of Para 16 )

Copy of judgement: Judgement_31-Jul-2020

-Adv. Tushar Kaushik

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