Legal Advice

Builder causing a delay in giving possession

Question: I booked a 1 BHK property in Navi Mumbai Taloja in 2013, all formalities were completed and I paid 20% and EMI started from May 2013. Now the builder causing a delay in giving flat. However, we haven’t received the possession and the construction work went on hold in 2015, post which the builder is not responding and multiple people have filed a complaint – Enkay Gardens Taloja, Panvel. I am paying EMI endlessly and there is no returns and progress, I want to withdraw and claim a penalty for delay and interest on the paid amount till date.

Advise

In the event that a builder is causing a delay in delivering possession of your flat, you should take immediate action by filing a complaint with the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA). The builder is responsible for returning the amount you paid with interest and has no right to indefinitely stall the project.

RERA has the power to ensure that you receive your hard-earned money with interest (Section 18), and you will not suffer any losses due to the builder’s fault.

If a builder is causing a delay, the Supreme Court ruling in Pioneer Urban Land & Infrastructure Ltd. v. Govindan Raghavan, (2019) 5 SCC 725 states that “the buyer should not be compelled to take delivery of a flat when there is a delay in delivery of possession by the builder.” The court further held that the builder must refund the amount paid by the buyer with compensation/interest. The builder cannot benefit from their own fault in failing to fulfil their commitment.

The sale of a flat is a contractual obligation, and the builder must perform their duties within the specified time frame. Time is of the essence in this type of contract, and if there is a delay, the buyer has the right to cancel the contract without notice.

Shivendra Pratap Singh

Advocate

High Court Lucknow