Issue of deduction of Housing Loan Interest in case of co-owners decided by Punjab and Haryana High Court in Priya Mahajan [ITA 384/2015 dtd 26-11-2015

Facts: Plot purchased in the name of four cowners. Also they were co-borrowers of housing loan for construction of house. The assessee solely repaid entire interest and principal since the date of borrowing. While assessee claimed 100% deduction on housing loan interest, the AO restricted it to 25% having regard to assessee’s share of ownership Section 45 of Transfer of Property Act 1882 on Joint transfer for consideration.— Where immoveable property is transferred for consideration to two or more persons and such consideration is paid out of a fund belonging to them in common, they are, in the absence of a contract to the contrary, respectively entitled to interests in such property identical, as nearly as may be, with the interests to which they were respectively entitled in the fund; and, where such consideration is paid out of separate funds belonging to them respectively, they are, in the absence of a contract to the contrary, respectively entitled to interests in such property in proportion to the shares of the consideration which they respectively advanced. In the absence of evidence as to the interests in the fund to which they were respectively entitled, or as to the shares which they respectively advanced, such persons shall be presumed to be equally interested in the property. Held that : In present case though assessee has claimed to have paid entire consideration for purchase of plot/construction, no evidence has been produced. In the sale deed since shares of individuals are not specified. Section 45 of Transfer of Property Act shall apply. In the case of Saiyed Abdullah v. Ahmad AIR 1929 All. 817, the Hon’ble Allahabad High Court held that ‘in the absence of specification of the shares purchased by two persons in the sale deed, it must be held that both purchased equal shares. In present case, since the individual shares were not specified in the sale deed, the logical conclusion is that everyone had equal share in the property. Hence allowance of 25% of Housing Loan to assessee borrower is correct even if the assessee solely repaid entire interest and principal since the date of borrowing.

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