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NRI Landlord - Tenant Dispute in India

Many NRIs and PIOs purchase properties in India as an investment and perhaps with the goal of probably returning to India at some point of time. Instead of keeping properties vacant, renting out is an option that some people consider. Rents in the major cities have gone up in the last few years and it does make good economic sense to rent out vacant properties. However, many people shy away from renting as they have are worried about tenants may not vacate the premises.While there are no full proof methods of protecting landlords in India from tenants who refuse to vacate their property after their rental agreements have expired, there are some steps landlords can take to protect themselves and their property. Landlords, can protect themselves from undesirable tenants, to some extent by using a leave and license agreement when renting out their property.

There are normally two types of agreements that are used when renting property.

1. Rental Lease Agreement

2. Leave and License agreement

While both these types of agreements appear to be similar with the purpose of renting property, there is a considerable difference when legal aspects are taken into consideration.In simple terms, in rental lease agreements, there is, considered to be a transfer of interest from a lessor to a lessee. On the other hand a Leave and License agreement does not create any interest in the premises in favor of the licensee.Leave and license agreements offer a higher form of protection for landlords against tenants. In general, rent control laws do not apply to leave and license agreements. Eviction, under leave and license is governed by the Easements Act. NRIs and PIOs who wish to rent out their properties should consider using a Leave and License agreement.

Common Reasons for NRI Owner Dispute with Tenant

NRI Landlord-tenant disputes may arise out of many reasons mostly stated below that may lay the foundation of such disputes:

  • Non or Insufficient Deposit of Rent by Tenant
  • Sub-letting without prior permission from NRI Landlord
  • Commercial use of the residential property
  • Material Alternation or Damage Caused to the Property by Tenant
  • Illegal Actitivty by the Tenant
  • Violation of Terms & Conditions of Rent/Lease Agreement

If you found any of the above reasons arose, NRI owners may send an Legal Notice For Eviction from the Tenancy Premises to the Tenant. However, the dispute may deepen if the tenant becomes non-respondent to the notice. And further NRI needs to file an evicition petition before the competnent court of law in the concerned jurisdiction.

EAST PUNJAB URBAN RENT RESTRICTION ACT 1949:

East Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act 1949 - Section 2 (dd) "Non-resident Indian" means a person of Indian origin, who is either permanently or temporarily settled outside India in either case -

(a) for or on taking up employment outside India; or
(b) for carrying on a business or vocation outside India;
or
(c) for any other purpose, in such circumstances, as would indicate his intention to stay outside India for a uncertain period;

East Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act 1949 - Section 13-B - Right to recover immediate possession of residential building or scheduled building and/or non- residential building to accrue to Non-resident Indian.--

(1) Where an owner is a Non-Resident Indian and returns to India and the residential building or scheduled building and/or non-residential building, as the case may be, let out by him or her, is required for his or her use, or for the use of any one ordinarily living with and dependent on him or her, he or she, may apply to the Controller for immediate possession of such building or buildings, as the case may be:

Provided that a right to apply in respect of such a building under this section, shall be available only after a period of five years from the date of becoming the owner of such a building and shall be available only once during the life time of such an owner.

(2) Where the owner referred to in sub-section (1), has let out more than one residential building or scheduled building and/or non-residential building, it shall be open to him or her to make an application under that sub-section in respect of only one residential building or one scheduled building and/or one non-residential building, each chosen by him or her.

(3) Where an owner recovers possession of a building under this section, he or she shall not transfer it through sale or any other means or let it out before the expiry of a period of five years from the date of taking possession of the said building, failing which, the evicted tenant may apply to the Controller for an order directing that he shall be restored the possession of the said building and the Controller shall make an order accordingly.

PUNJAB RENT CONTROL ACT 1995:

Punjab Rent Control Act - Section 24 (3) of the 1995 Act is as follows :- Section 24 (3) "24 (3). Where an owner is a non-resident Indian and returns to India for permanent residence, he or she may apply to the Rent Authority for recovery of immediate possession of residential or/and non-residential premises let out by him or her on or prior to the commencement of this Act, which are required for his or her use, or for the use of any one ordinarily living with and dependent on him or her.

As per the amended Punjab Rent Control Act, 1995 the Rent Agreement should be registered with the Rent Registering Authority. New Rent Act has given wider scope in favour of the NRIs for getting evict the tenant from tenancy premises. Hon'ble Punjab & Haryana High Court Chandigarh in case titled "Krishan Kumar & others Versus Kamla Devi" has given detailed facts and clarify the situation in favour of NRIs with regard to Landlord Tenant Dispute under old and new Rent Act

We strongly advised all NRIs Landlord to must seek legal advise before assiging any property to the Tenant on Rent or Lease in oder to reduce the risk of Landlord Tenant Dispute and you are welcome to contact us for any kind of legal assistance for the same.

As it can be overwhelming for NRI property owners to have thorough knowledge about landlord tenant laws prevailing in India, it is advisable for them to hire a professional legal firm.

The services provided by our legal team include representation of NRI clients in all legal disputes and law suits including litigations, negotiations and out of the court settlements. We adopt a customer centric approach with NRI clients being the focus of our attention. Our team is well acquainted with complex litigation matters related to Landlord Tenant Dispute

For more information and detailed advise, you are welcome to write us at nrilawoffice@gmail.com or call at +91 947 852 6909 or take appointment for in-person meeting.