Reliefs available in case of delay in possession to the home buyers.

Delay in delivery of possession of the flat has become a perpetual problem in the recent times and as I understand there are five possibilities with the home buyers to get their reliefs with respect to the flats.
1. RERA Complaint
2. Complaint before Consumer court.
3. Insolvency petition before the NCLT.
4. Winding up petition before respective High court for the
winding up of the company.
5. Age old civil suit for recovery.

As I have dealt with all these cases for the delay in possession/ delivery of flat/office space etc. I can say with my experience that all these forums have specific advantages and disadvantages.
RERA forums are specially designed for the purpose of real estate sector and they have specific advantage that the cases are finished in a time bound manner. However their also have a slight disadvantage that the RERA forums are been formulated to look after the real estate sector in this regard they try to balance the interests of builders as well as the buyers.
Consumer courts have started to follow the guidelines laid down in its own judgement and the pioneer judgement of the Hon’ble supreme court and decided in case the project is delayed by more than two years even if the OC/CC is ready the buyer is entitled for refund of entire amount along with compensation. However the consumer courts do take a longer time than the RERA courts.

Both RERA and Consumer courts provide the compensation for the delay in possession, most people take the delivery without going into legal forums and lose lakhs of rupees only because of the said reason.

Under Insolvency and bankruptcy code 2016 (IBC), buyers have been made as a financial creditor and the builder will be termed a debtor if they don’t deliver the project on time. IBC gives any creditor to file a petition before the respective NCLT bench against the debtor for declaring the debtor as insolvent. If the petition is admitted the debtor have to submit the resolution plan or the company will go for liquidation and the assets will be sold to take care of the debts owned by the debtor. However as happened in the amrapali case once the company goes into liquidation to many entities get involved like financial institutions etc. and some times the buyers do not get their full refund and they had to approach Hon’ble Supreme court in Amrapali case.

Winding up petitions are similar to the IBC petitions, with a slight difference that under winding up petitions the company goes for liquidation and their is no possibility of agreeing for resolution plan without the leave of respective company court.

Suit for recovery has now been less and less followed by the advocates to get the relief for their clients with respect to delay in possession as the court fees involved is more and it takes longer time than the other courts some times and execution of its order sometimes becomes another challenge.

The article only mentions about two forums, as I have elaborated in brief about some of the other possible options for the buyers to take for the relief they want. However a word of caution is required please take proper legal advice before taking any action.

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