Possession Certificate – Everything You Should Know!

June 3rd, 2023

Possession Certificate

What is Possession Certificate?

A possession certificate is a legal document that serves as evidence of ownership or possession of a particular asset or property. It is commonly used in real estate transactions to demonstrate that an individual or entity has rightful possession of a property. This certificate may include details such as the property’s description, the owner’s name, and other relevant information related to the property’s possession.

Understanding Possession Certificate and its Importance

  • Proof of Ownership:

    It serves as conclusive evidence of property ownership and helps establish the legal rights of the owner – providing protection against disputes or claims by others.

  • Property Transactions:

    It plays a crucial role during purchase or sale of a property. It is also required during property registrations, mortgage or loan applications, and other property-related transactions. The certificate ensures transparency and safeguards the interests of both buyers & sellers.

  • Legal Compliance:

    A valid Possession Certificate is essential for complying with legal and regulatory requirements. It demonstrates that the property owner has acquired the property through legitimate means and adheres to the relevant laws & regulations.

  • Property Taxation:

    Many jurisdictions use the possession certificate as a basis for assessing property taxes, as it helps determine the ownership status and tax liability associated with the property.

  • Resolving Disputes:

    This certificate is a crucial document for resolving conflicts, in case there are any property-related disputes. It provides a clear record of ownership, possession, and other relevant details, which can be used as evidence in legal proceedings.

  • Insurance and Financial Purposes:

    Possession Certificates are often required when applying for property insurance or securing loans against the property. Insurance companies and financial institutions rely on the certificate to assess the property’s value, ownership, and potential risks.

Possession Certificates and Government Initiatives

The issuance of possession certificate is a crucial step in property transactions, as it establishes the rights and responsibilities of the property owner. These certificates are often required for various purposes, such as applying for loans, obtaining utility connections, transferring property, and participating in government schemes.

When it comes to Indian government initiatives related to land ownership, several programs have been launched to streamline the process, ensure transparency, and facilitate efficient land management.

  • Digital India Land Records Modernisation Program (DILRMP):

    Launched in 2008, this program aims to digitise land records and establish an integrated land information management system. Under DILRMP, possession certificates are issued digitally, reducing the chances of fraud and providing easy access to land-related information.

  • National Land Records Modernisation Program (NLRMP):

    Implemented by the Department of Land Resources, this initiative focuses on modernising land records and establishing efficient record-keeping systems. Possession certificates are a part of this program, and efforts are made to digitise land records and make them easily accessible to citizens.

Documents Required for Obtaining a Possession Certificate

To obtain a possession certificate in India, you typically need to submit several documents to the relevant authorities. The specific requirements may vary depending on the state and local regulations. However, here is a general list of documents often required for obtaining a possession certificate:

  1. Application Form:

    Fill out the prescribed form that can usually be obtained from the local municipal office, or the concerned authority.

  2. Proof of Ownership:

    Provide documents that establish your ownership of the property, such as:

    • Registered sale deed or conveyance deed
    • Allotment letter from a government authority (applicable for properties under government schemes)
    • Gift deed or will (if applicable)
    • Partition deed (if applicable)
    • Inheritance documents (if applicable)
  3. Building Completion Certificate:

    If the property is a newly constructed building, you may need to submit a building completion certificate issued by the local municipal corporation or the relevant authority.

  4. Property Tax Receipts:

    Present the latest property tax receipts as proof of payment

  5. No Objection Certificate:

    Obtain a NOC from the housing society or the relevant authority, stating that there are no pending dues or objections against the property.

  6. Encumbrance Certificate:

    Obtain an encumbrance certificate from the local sub-registrar’s office, which verifies that the property is free from any legal dues or liabilities.

  7. Proofs of Identity & Address:

    One or more of the following documents may be required:

    • Aadhaar card
    • Passport
    • Voter ID card
    • Driving licence
    • PAN card
  8. Land Records:

    Submit Patta document (if applicable), Land Ownership records, and Survey Sketch or Map of the property

  9. Site Plan & Layout Approval:

    If the property is part of a housing society or layout, you may need to provide the approved site plan and layout plan.

  10. Occupancy Certificate:

    If the property is in a building complex, provide the occupancy certificate issued by the local municipal corporation or the authority concerned.

  11. Payment Receipts:

    Submit proof of payment for the property, including sale agreement, receipts, or bank statements.

Difference Between a Possession Certificate and an Occupancy Certificate

Possession Certificate Occupancy Certificate
Definition  A document stating that the property’s possession has been transferred from builder / developer to property buyer A document issued by the local municipal authority or relevant government department, certifying that the construction of a building is complete, and it is fit for occupancy
Purpose It indicates that the buyer can take possession of the property and start using it for their intended purpose. It confirms that the building meets the necessary safety standards and regulations for people to live or work in it
Issued by Tehsildar in rural areas, and Revenue Divisional Office in urban areas Local municipal authority or relevant government department
Time of issuance After the construction of the property is complete After a thorough inspection of the building’s structure and facilities to ensure compliance with building codes and regulations
Documentation Typically issued based on the completion certificate or occupancy certificate obtained by the builder / developer Requires submission of various documents, including completion certificate, building plans, fire safety compliance, and other relevant certificates
Legal significance Crucial document for the buyer, as it marks the formal possession of the property and can be used as proof of ownership It is a legal requirement to obtain an occupancy certificate before using a building for residential or commercial purposes
Building compliance It does not necessarily certify that the building meets all the necessary regulations and safety requirements It certifies that the building has been constructed according to the approved plans, and meets all the necessary standards & regulations
Importance for loans Lenders may require possession certificate as proof of ownership, when providing loans against the property Lenders often require an occupancy certificate as it assures them that the property is legally compliant and safe for occupancy, reducing the associated risks

What is a Conditional Possession Letter?

A conditional possession letter is a document that outlines the terms and conditions under which a person or entity is allowed temporary possession of a property or asset. It typically applies to situations where ownership of the property has not yet been transferred, but the party in question is granted permission to use or occupy it under specific conditions.

The letter specifies the conditions that must be met for the possession to be valid and the duration for which it is granted. These conditions may include factors such as payment of a deposit, completion of certain tasks or obligations, adherence to specific rules or regulations, or fulfillment of contractual agreements.

Procedure for Obtaining Possession Certificate

To obtain a Possession Certificate, you need to follow certain steps and procedures.

  1. Required Documents:

    Collect all the necessary documents, which may vary depending on the state or city the property is located in. Typically, you will need the following:

    – Sale deed or registered agreement of the property

    – Completion certificate or occupancy certificate from the builder

    – Property tax receipts or khata certificate

    – Identity proof (such as Aadhaar card, passport, or voter ID)

    – Address proof (such as Aadhaar card, utility bill, or ration card)

    – Any other documents specified by the local authorities

  2. Visit the Municipal Office:

    Go to the municipal corporation or municipal council or the local civic body responsible for issuing possession certificates. In some cases, it may be the Development Authority or the Town Planning Department

  3. Submit the Application:

    Fill out the application form for the Possession Certificate. Attach all the required documents along with the form. Ensure that you have both the original documents and their photocopies for verification.

  4. Pay the Prescribed Fees:

    In most cases, there will be a fee associated with the application. Pay the required fee at the designated payment counter and obtain the receipt.

  5. Verification Process:

    The authorities concerned will verify the submitted documents and may inspect the property to ensure it complies with the local building regulations.

  6. Follow-up:

    Keep track of the application status by noting the reference number provided during the submission. You can inquire about the progress of your application at the designated office.

  7. Issuance of Possession Certificate:

    Once the verification process is completed successfully and all requirements are met, the Possession Certificate will be issued to you. The time taken for issuance may vary based on the local administrative processes.

Possession Certificate Sample

Date: _____________


Mr. ______________ & Mrs. _____________


City, State

Ph.No. ________________

Dear Mr. __________________ & Mrs. _____________________

We are pleased to hand over the Unit no. _________ in Sobha ______________. The unit has been completed in all aspects as per the standard specifications mentioned in the Agreement to Sell dated ______________.

The address of your unit is:

<Unit No.>, Sobha  <Project Name>,



Bengaluru ____________,

Karnataka, India

We hereby handing over the keys of your unit i/e. Sobha _______________.


Kindly acknowledge the receipt.

We sincerely wish that you and your family have a comfortable stay at your new SOBHA HOME.

Thanking you & with warm regards,

I/We have inspected the unit and the construction/facilities, specifications are to my satisfaction.

For Sobha Limited

<Team Manager>                                                      Mr.   _______________

<Designation> – CRM                                             Mrs.  _______________


How to Check the Possession Certificate Status Online?

To check the possession certificate status online in India, you can follow these general steps:

  1. Identify the Authority:

    Determine the specific authority responsible for issuing possession certificates in your region. It could be the municipal corporation, local development authority, or a similar governing body.

  2. Visit the Official Website:

    Go to the official website of the relevant authority. You can usually find this information through an online search or by visiting the website of your local government.

  3. Find the Relevant Section:

    Look for a section or tab on the website related to possession certificates or property-related services. It might be labeled as ‘Property Tax’ or ‘Property Services’.

  4. Access the Online Service:

    Within the relevant section, search for an online service or portal that provides access to possession certificate status. Some websites have dedicated portals for checking the status of various property-related documents.

  5. Enter Required Details:

    Once you have accessed the online service, you may need to provide specific details to retrieve the status. This could include the property identification number (PID), property address, application number, or any other information related to your application.6. Submit the information: Enter the required details accurately and double-check for any errors. Submit the information through the online form or system provided.

  6. Check the Status:

    After submitting the required information, the system will display the status of your possession certificate application. It may indicate whether it is still under processing, approved, rejected, or any other relevant status.

  7. Take Necessary Actions:

    Based on the status displayed, you can take appropriate action. If the certificate is approved, you may proceed with further processes or documentation as required. In case of rejection, contact the relevant authority for further clarification or resubmit the application if necessary.

Final Thoughts

Obtaining a Possession Certificate is a crucial step for anyone who owns or plans to own property. It not only establishes their rights and safeguards their interests, but also enables them to exercise their legal rights fully. Whether it is for residential or commercial purposes, having a Possession Certificate ensures smooth and transparent transactions.

Furthermore, the document plays a vital role in various legal and financial matters. It is often required when applying for loans, mortgages, or insurance policies related to the property. Lenders and financial institutions rely on this document to assess the credibility and worthiness of the property as collateral.

In conclusion, the Possession Certificate is a valuable document that holds significant importance for individuals and communities alike. It serves as undeniable evidence of legal possession and ownership of a property, providing peace of mind and protection against disputes or claims.


1. What is the difference between a possession certificate and occupancy certificate?

Possession Certificate states that the property's possession has been transferred from the builder / developer to the property buyer. Occupancy Certificate is issued by the local municipal authority or relevant government department, certifying that the construction of a building is complete, and it is fit for occupancy.

2. What is the validity period of the possession certificate?

It is valid for 12 years from the date of issuance. Post that, the certificate will need to be renewed to avoid any legal issues with the local authorities.

3. Can the possession certificate be transferred to another person?

Yes, the certificate can be transferred to another person. However, it will require the permission of the original holder of the certificate.

4. What happens if possession certificate is lost?

It is usually difficult to obtain another possession certificate, if the original is lost. However, you can make a case, citing the circumstances under which it was lost and then follow the steps required.

5. How much time does it take to obtain the certificate?

From the date of submission, it will take 7 working days to process the application. Once verified, you will be notified to collect the certificate from the designated personnel.

6. Who is a Tehsildar?

The tax officer who accompanies revenue inspectors is known as a tehsildar. They are responsible for the collection of taxes regarding land revenue, and they mostly function in rural areas. Their urban equivalent is Revenue Divisonal Officer (RDO).

7. Is there any fee that I have to pay?

There are no fees to be paid when applying for a possession certificate, and the process usually takes around 7 working days.

8. What documents do I have to submit?

Here is a general list of documents often required: a. Application Form b. Proof of Ownership c. Building Completion Certificate d. Property Tax Receipts e. No Objection Certificate (NOC) f. Encumbrance Certificate g. Proofs of Identity & Address h. Land Records i. Site Plan and Layout Approval j. Occupancy Certificate k. Payment Receipts

9. What happens if I do not have a possession certificate?

Once you decide to buy a home and avail yourself of a home loan, it is important to get the certificate, which is also helpful for income tax deductions. Properties without possession certificate might be marked by the local municipal body as illegal.

10. Who gives / issues possession certificate?

The municipal office or the local civic body where the property is located, is responsible for issuing the certificate. In some cases, it may be the Development Authority or the Town Planning Department.

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