The Different Types of Legal Deeds in India and Their Significance

Last Updated at: Aug 11, 2020
legal deeds and their significance
Types of Legal Deeds
The Tamil Nadu Government has introduced the upgraded version of STAR 3.0 (Simplified and Transparent Administration of Registration) project to eliminate ambiguity in property ownership. It has decided to include photographs of landowners and a copy of the registered sale deed along with online copies of encumbrance certificates for the registration process.


There are various forms of deeds with the conditions per jurisdiction varying. A deed is usually any written legal document that transfers, affirms, or confirms the interest, rights, property, etc. A valid deed requires that the grantor, the original owner of the land conveys his interest to the guarantee, the recipient of the title. It is also important that the grantor must have legal capacity, which means that the grantor must be the person with a sound mind and with a lawful age- in most of the places the minimum age to fulfil the criteria for legal capacity is eighteen. Besides, a deed is a special type of binding promise to do something.

Difference Between Deed and Agreement

The basics of contract law are proposing and accepting an agreement to be legally obligated on consideration. Consideration forms the stem for an agreement, the parties need consideration to show that they have ‘bought’ the promise by doing some act or providing something in return for the promise. In contrast to the agreement or contract, there is no requirement for consideration for a deed, consideration is not mandatory, a deed does not need consideration because of the idea that a deed is the most solemn indication that the parties are intended to be bound.

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Types of Deeds

Warranty Deeds

One can use this form of deed in large part for sales of residential real estate. Warranty deed acts as a guarantee to the buyer where the seller has all the right to sell the property, and also the property is free from debts and other liabilities, despite the warranty deed. If any problems arise the buyer has the right to claim for compensation from the seller.

This form of deed guarantees in particular that the seller owns the property and possess the legitimate right to sell it. It also ensures that it is free of any liability, debts or charges. This form of deed serves as a promise to the buyer despite being a warranty act and if any issues occur, the buyer is entitled to demand compensation from the seller.

The highest level of protection for the buyer is provided by a general warranty deed because it includes important agreements or guarantees transferred to the grantor. Usually, the warranties include specific details such as seisin warranty, the right to convey, the exemption of burdens and the protection of the title about all other claims.

Special Warranty Deeds

A Special Warranty Deed is not as same as the warranty deed.  Here the seller’s guarantee, given to the buyer will not cover the entire property. The seller only ensures implicitly the issues that occur during the seller’s property ownership. One usually uses a special warranty for purchases involving commercial properties. It transfers all the rights to the buyer but warranties only what is specifically mentioned.

The grantor of this form of deed conveys only two warranties to the property:

  1. the grantor currently owns the property title, and
  2. The land had not been hampered with during the grantor ‘s ownership time. 

However, it offers no assurance that until the grantor took possession it was unhampered. This means that the seller or grantor may not have any idea of what happened to the property until the grantor took the possession, and it does not guarantee that before that the title was secure.

One shall use a special warranty for purchases involving commercial properties. Therefore, one can usually perform this deed when transferring a trust or residential real estate, or when selling a commercial property.

Quitclaim Deeds

A quitclaim is mostly used by family members, spouses, and mainly by those who are well-informed and able to transfer ownership rights and claims from one party to a different party are the ones who mostly use a quitclaim.

Bargain and Sale Deeds

Usually, one can use this deed for selling the court confiscated assets or real estate. In this case, it generally does not guarantee to the buyer that the seller owns the property free and clear.

Grant Deeds

In exchange for an agreed price, a grant certificate transfers the interest in an estate from the seller to the buyer. It guarantees that the seller owns the property free from all debts. Whereas, it does not provide a guarantee for the defects of the title like the warranty deed.

Fiduciary Deeds

One can use a fiduciary deed when the grantor is a fiduciary such as a trustee to transfer the land. This act ensures only that the trustee has the power and authority it has delegated.

Trust deeds

A trust deed is a written instrument which transfers property to a trustee to secure an obligation such as a promissory note or a mortgage. The trustee has the right to sell the property in the case of a default made in the obligation.

Therefore, different types of deeds exist to facilitate the buyer and the seller. However, before executing a deed it is mandatory to read the deed’s terms and conditions. We need to do this to avoid problems in future.

Court Order Deeds:

There are various forms of court order deeds which the court performs after a court order. It covers acts such as deeds of the sheriff, master deeds, etc. The court carries out these deeds without the owner’s consent. One makes these deed during circumstances where the sellers are no longer able to pay for the house. Thus, the court executes the deed without their permission. One of its unique aspects is that it lists the real price of the property as a consideration in advance.