Pakistan – Case Law: Gift of Real Estate under Islamic Law

Failure to Deliver Original Title Documents Renders the Real Estate Gift Transaction as Invalid

On 14 December 2015, the High Court of Sindh, in Pakistan, has issued a judgment in favor of our client, in the case of Abdul Haleem v Gulshan-e-Faisal Cooperative Housing Society & Others (Suit No. 1018/2005). The main claim in this case was that the gift transaction pertaining to a real estate amongst the defendants is invalid, and that validation and recordation of the same by the local community society be declared as invalid. The High Court ruled on this main litigated issue as follows:

- Under Mohammadan Law, formalities of a valid gift are: (1) declaration of gift by the donor, (2) express/implied acceptance of gift by the done, and (3) delivery of possession of gift by the donor to done.

- As the defendants have failed to prove delivery of gift (of real estate) through delivery of possession letter or original allotment letter to the main defendant (i.e. donee), therefore, the gift transaction remained incomplete/invalid, and that recordation of the same by the local community society is also invalid.

This precedent is a significant contribution to contract law, and Islamic law jurisprudence in Pakistan.