Section 3 of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882 defines Actionable Claims as
- A claim on any debt other than a liability secured by the foreclosure of immovable property or hypothecation for movable property or
- Claim to any beneficial interest in movable property that does not belong to the claimant, be it real or constructive.
In addition, such claims are seen by the civil courts as affording grounds for relief. It does not matter whether the debt or interest-bearing interest exists, accumulated, conditional or dependent.
In short, there are two parts to the definition of Actionable Claims:
- An unsecured debt claim or
- Any interest on movable property that does not belong to the claimant.
Actionable Claims are only applicable to goods and not to services. Section 2 (52) of the CGST Act defines goods as all types of movable property without security and protection but includes actionable claims, growing crops, grass and land-related items agreed to be determined prior to supply.
EXAMPLES OS ACTIONABLE CLAIMS
Considering the definition of Actionable Claims in terms of section 3 of the Property Transfer Act, the following may be examples of Actionable Claims:
- The right to claim arrears of rent
- Fees payable under the contract for price or advance
- The right to claim contract benefits
- Claim for insurance other than offshore insurance
- Lottery ticket
- The right to receive a loan from a provident fund
- Division of shares, cash payments, negotiated instruments such as bills of exchange etc.
- Share corporate assets
- Right under license
- Stock rights or stock option
- Bank guarantee
TRANSFER OF ACTIONABLE CLAIMS
It should be noted that Actionable Claims are transferable. The provisions relating to the Actionable Claims are included in Sections 130 to 137 of the Property Transfer Act.
In accordance with the following provisions:
- Actionable claims can only be forwarded with a written tool. Such instrument must be signed by the transferor or his authorized agent. In addition, it should be complete and effective only when the instrument is used. Upon execution, all rights and remedies of the transferor will rest on the transferee.
- The Actionable Claims may be transferred in the form of a sale, exchange, gift, loan etc
- Actionable Claims may be allocated by endorsement which is made at the back of the document. Such endorsement contains that the claim made is sufficient and that no separate or additional documentation is required.
- The transfer of Actionable Claims is effective from the date on which the allocation is made.
- Post the transfer, the transferee is bound to all equities and liabilities to which the transferor is liable on the day of the transfer.
- The intended transferee must give notice of the transfer to the debtor. Upon receipt of such notice, the debtor is liable to repay such debt to the transferee.
- Finally, the notice given to the debtor must be in writing and must state the name and address of the transferee.
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