Non Judicial Stamp Papers do not have any Expiry Period – Supreme Court

NON JUDICIAL STAMP PAPERS DO NOT HAVE ANY EXPIRY PERIOD BEING USED FOR A DOCUMENT                                            Supreme Court


The Supreme Court has held that there is no expiry period  for use of Non Judicial Stamp Paper.

In this case, the Trial Court and the High Court have doubted the genuineness of the agreement dated 5.1.1980 because it was written on two stamp papers purchased on 25.8.1973 and 7.8.1978. The learned counsel for first respondent submitted that apart from raising a doubt about the authenticity of the document, the use of such old stamp papers invalidated the agreement, as the stamp papers used in the agreement of sale were more than six months old, they were not valid stamp papers and consequently, the agreement prepared on such ‘expired’ papers was also not valid.

Apex Court held that that the Indian Stamp Act, 1899 nowhere prescribes any expiry date for use of a stamp paper. Section 54 merely provide that a person possessing a stamp paper for which he has no immediate use (which is not spoiled or rendered unfit or useless), can seek refund of the value thereof by surrendering such stamp paper to the Collector provided it was purchased within the period of six months next preceding the date on which it was so surrendered. The stipulation of the period of six months prescribed in section 54 is only for the purpose of seeking refund of the value of the unused stamp paper, and not for use of the stamp paper. Section 54 does not require the person who has purchased a stamp paper, to use it within six months. The stamp papers do not have any expiry period. Section 54 does not require the person who has purchased a stamp paper, to use it within six months. Therefore, there is no impediment for a stamp paper purchased more than six months prior to the proposed date of execution, being used for a document.

Supreme Court of India  
Citation:(2008) 4 SCC 530:AIR 2008 SC 1541

 Thiruvengada Pillai vs Navaneethammal & Anr on 19 February, 2008

Bench: R. V. Raveendran, P.Sathasivam


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