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Difference between Relinquishment Deed and Release Deed

Updated: Oct 2, 2022

Relinquishment Deed and Release Deed are terms people find hard to differentiate. Both of these terms are very confusing to people who are not aware of their differences. Though both terms mean the same technology, there is still a minor but significant difference between the two. This article will talk about what these two deeds are and their differences.

Relinquishment deed

Relinquishment deeds are legal documents through which any person who has legal properties in their name can give up their legal rights over the property with their consent to the co-owner.

To understand this deed better, let us take an example: A person who has legal properties in his name dies without making a will. In this case, by law, the legal property goes to his legal heirs (his children). Given a scenario, one of his children wishes to transfer their rights to their sibling. This transfer of ownership is called relinquishment. In this case, it is also crucial that the person to whom the property is being transferred should be interested in entering the deed and give their full consent for taking up the entire share of the property. Suppose the other party is not interested in taking up the property rights or entering the deed. In that case, the relinquishment deed stands canceled or becomes void and cannot be legally enforceable. The parties here are; a person relinquishing the deed and a person in whose favor the deed is relinquished.

It is also important to remember that a relinquishment deed can only be entered by members of the family, co-owner of the property. No other person not related to the family or property can join the deed.

Below is an image of the relinquishment deed

Release deed

Release deeds are legal documents used to renounce one's claim against a specified legal property. Release deeds are also called as 'deed of reconveyance.' This deed can completely release the parties involved in any obligations. In the case of release deeds, the deed can be entered by anyone interested in the property, regardless of their relationship to the family or the property.

For example: when a bank provides a loan to a person, the bank takes complete control of the property pre-owned by the person claiming the loan. This is the process of accepting collateral for the loan. When the person clears the loan, the collateral under the bank's control is transferred back to the owner along with a deed of release. The bank and the person are related only through the loan service but are not relatives. This is why it is said that it is not essential for two parties to be associated with each other to enter the release deed.

Significant differences between relinquishment deed and release deed.

The significant difference between the two deeds is the parties involved in the deed. The relinquishment deed involves parties related to each other through familial relationships, primarily for inherited properties. Release deed can be entered by parties not associated with each other but provide services and guarantees, like bank loans and collateral.

The table below gives a full view of the differences.

Requirements to carry out a relinquishment deed:

Relinquishment deeds are documents used to transfer legal rights from one owner to another owner. The transfer of ownership should be meticulously performed. The deed should be registered as per section 17 of the Registration Act, 1908. The deed is drafted on a stamp paper of Rs. 100. The application should be submitted to the sub-registrar’s office where the property is located. Two witnesses should also be present while submitting the documents and the parties involved in the deed. The registration of the relinquishment deed also involves a nominal fee which ranges between Rs. 100 to Rs. 250.

Requirements to carry out a release deed:

Though release deeds are carried out in the same way a relinquishment deed is prepared, it doesn’t need any witnesses to be present or the signatures of the witnesses.

Revoking of deeds:

Revoking of any registered deed cannot be executed because the person transferring their legal rights over a legal property has changed their decision about the transfer. A change in mind would not be entertained to revoke any deed.

The relinquishment deed can only be revoked by referring to the same grounds for revoking a general contract. These grounds are the cases of fraud committed, undue influence or forced to enter the agreement, coercion, and misrepresentation in the final document. The consent of both parties is essential for revoking the deed. In other cases, the deed can only be revoked by approaching the court.

The time limit to revoke a relinquishment deed is within three years from the date of registration or from the date on which the right was conferred, under the stipulations of the Limitation Act.

The release deed can not be revoked in any case.

Both relinquishment deed and release deed are similar to any binary/general registered contract, which require the same essentials to become a valid deed. The only difference is that a relinquishment deed is executed between two parties with or without consideration, whereas a release deed is only performed with consideration. With this, the Relinquishment deed can also be seen as a form of release deed.

(image source : Corporate Finance Institute and Quora)

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