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Applicability of Stamp duty when signatories are in different states/abroad

Applicability of Stamp duty when signatories are in different states/abroad


Stamp duty payable on an instrument/document when joint executants are in different state

The section 17 of Stamp act 1899 provides that all instruments chargeable to the duty and executed by any person in India shall be stamped before or at the time of execution of the instrument.

Section 19A provides that added stamp duty payable when executants are in various states of India. As per above section in such cases the document/instrument  needs  to be further stamped for payment of difference in duty, if any, in accordance with the rates in force in those states.

In the other words, when an instrument being executed may be stamped according to the applicable laws of the first person signing the documents. In the case of the rate of duty payable in another state where the second executant resides is higher; the instrument requires being further stamped (Adhesive stamps) with the difference in duty. Alternatively, the instrument may be stamped with the highest duty chargeable on the instrument at the time of execution by the first signatory of instrument/document. However, if the stamp duty is same or lower, it will not require to be further stamped.

How to pay stamp duty for the document signed in abroad?

According to Section 3 of the Diplomatic and Consular Officers (Oaths and Fees) Act, 1948, notarising a deed from an authorised officer of the Indian Consulate/Embassy would be considered as a valid notary. Whereas a person settled abroad needs to execute a document required in India that may attracts stamp duty in India, the executant of such document shall sign the document and get it authenticated by the duly accredited representative of the Indian Embassy/consulate in that country. No need to be the instrument stamped at the time of execution of document but within three months from the date of receipt of the instrument/document in India, applicable stamp duty shall be paid. There is another method of notorisation of document called ‘appositille’ which obviates requirements of diplomatic or consular legalization. As per ‘Apostle Treaty’ governed by the Hague Conference 1961, the document issued in one country can be certified for legal purpose at another country. The appositille is a certificate which confirms and verifies the signature/seal of the person by the designated authority in the issuing country that authenticated the document and such certificate supplements a local notorisation. In both the above cases applicable stamp duty shall be paid in India within three months from the date of receipt of the document in India.

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