Introduction

What is Joint Development Agreement?

An agreement between a landowner and a real estate developer to construct new projects is called a Joint Development Agreement. In a joint development the capital, the builder carries out construction and legal work whereas the landowner provides the land.

Background

Under the existing provisions of section 45, capital gain is chargeable to tax in the year in which transfer takes place except in certain cases. The definition of ‘transfer’, inter alia, includes any arrangement or transaction where any rights are handed over in execution of part performance of contract, even though the legal title has not been transferred. In such a scenario, execution of Joint Development Agreement between the owner of immovable property and the developer triggers the capital gains tax liability in the hands of the owner in the year in which the possession of immovable property is handed over to the developer for development of a project.

The incidence of taxation by way of capital gains on execution of a development agreement of an immovable property by an owner of an immovable property has been a much litigated issue after the Bombay High Court decision in Chaturbhuj Dwarkadas Kapadia’s case, until the recent amendment in the 2017 Union Budget.

PROVISION OF INCOME TAX

A new sub-section (5A) in section 45 was inserted so as to provide that in case of an assessee being individual or Hindu undivided family, who enters into a specified agreement for development of a project, the capital gains shall be chargeable to income-tax as income of the previous year in which the certificate of completion for the whole or part of the project is issued by the competent authority.

It was further proposed in Union Budget 2017 to provide that the stamp duty value of his share, being land or building or both, in the project on the date of issuing of said certificate of completion as increased by any monetary consideration received, if any, shall be deemed to be the full value of the consideration received or accruing as a result of the transfer of the capital asset.

It was also proposed to provide that benefit of this regime shall not apply to an assessee who transfers his share in the project to any other person on or before the date of issue of said certificate of completion.

It was also proposed to provide that in such a situation, the capital gains as determined under general provisions of the Act shall be deemed to be the income of the previous year in which such transfer took place and shall be computed as per provisions of the Act without taking into account this proposed provisions.

 It was also proposed to make consequential amendment in section 49 so as to provide that the cost of acquisition of the share in the project being land or building or both, in the hands of the land owner shall be the amount which is deemed as full value of consideration under the said proposed provision.

These amendments will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years. It is also proposed to insert a new section 194-IC in the Act so as to provide that in case any monetary consideration is payable under the specified agreement, tax at the rate of ten per cent shall be deductible from such payment. This amendment will take effect from 1st April, 2017.

The newly inserted section 45(5) in Union Budget 2017 is reproduced as:

[(5A) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), where the capital gain arises to an assessee, being an individual or a Hindu undivided family, from the transfer of a capital asset, being land or building or both, under a specified agreement, the capital gains shall be chargeable to income-tax as income of the previous year in which the certificate of completion for the whole or part of the project is issued by the competent authority; and for the purposes of section 48, the stamp duty value, on the date of issue of the said certificate, of his share, being land or building or both in the project, as increased by the consideration received in cash, if any, shall be deemed to be the full value of the consideration received or accruing as a result of the transfer of the capital asset :

Provided that the provisions of this sub-section shall not apply where the assessee transfers his share in the project on or before the date of issue of the said certificate of completion, and the capital gains shall be deemed to be the income of the previous year in which such transfer takes place and the provisions of this Act, other than the provisions of this sub-section, shall apply for the purpose of determination of full value of consideration received or accruing as a result of such transfer.

Explanation.—For the purposes of this sub-section, the expression—

(i)  “Competent authority” means the authority empowered to approve the building plan by or under any law for the time being in force;

(ii) “specified agreement” means a registered agreement in which a person owning land or building or both, agrees to allow another person to develop a real estate project on such land or building or both, in consideration of a share, being land or building or both in such project, whether with or without payment of part of the consideration in cash;

(iii)”stamp duty value” means the value adopted or assessed or assessable by any authority of the Government for the purpose of payment of stamp duty in respect of an immovable property being land or building or both.]

194-IC. Notwithstanding anything contained in section 194-IA, any person responsible for paying to a resident any sum by way of consideration, not being consideration in kind, under the agreement referred to in sub-section (5A) of section, shall at the time of credit of such sum to the account of the payee or at the time of payment thereof in cash or by issue of a cheque or draft or by any other mode, whichever is earlier, deduct an amount equal to ten per cent of such sum as income-tax thereon.]

Disclaimer: The write-up is for educational purpose only.

(Author – CA MRIDUL GUPTA, MRIDUL GUPTA & COMPANY, CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS from Delhi and can be contacted at camridulgupta0709@gmail.com).

Author Bio

Qualification: CA in Practice
Company: MRIDUL GUPTA & CO.
Location: Delhi, New Delhi, IN
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Experienced Chartered Accountant with a demonstrated history of working in the financial services industry, skilled in Statutory Audits, Income Tax, GST Compliances, Auditing, Financial Accounting and Financial Reporting. View Full Profile

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