BLOG/ NEWS LAW EXPLAINED Transfer of Property
Spread the Love

DOCTRINE OF SPES SUCCESSIONIS- By its very extant, the community mandates interaction, exchange or transfer. A property whether movable or immovable, is transferred from one person to another under distinct situations and circumstances and for different values. This pass on may be a gift, an endowment or an asset obtained by paying full value. Therefore, when a portable property is transferred between two humans, Sales of Goods Act, 1930[1] comes into existence. And in case of immovable belongings from one person to another the Transfer of Property Act, 1882. In an instance where the property is being transferred from a dead person to a living, the law applied will be the Law of Succession. Where a person dies without leaving a will (intestate), the Law of Intestate Succession is applicable and in cases where a person dies leaving a will, the Law of Testamentary Succession[2] is applicable.


A Latin maxim, “SPES SUCCESSIONIS” means the possibility of succeeding in a person’s property after his demise. Collins Dictionary of law narrates spes successionis as an anomaly of succeeding to property. It is not a title, but audacious lenders may spot it as a type of solace. Clause (a) of Section 6[3] the Transfer of Property Act, 1882. This doctrine mentions about a mere chance of a person to supersede to an estate of another person after his death. It is directly a hope of accession of an heir apparent or any other relation to succeed in principal’s property by the process of succession or will respectively. Such anticipation does not lead to an engrossment in property and cannot be made the subject matter of a transfer.

It is not taken as a transfer as the belongings is not in the hand of the transferor but a poor expectation to get right over the property in the coming years.  The heir apparent may get a certain property in the future if what he/she thought works in that way. The Transfer of Property Act, governs the transfer related to the property every aspects and restricts some ways of transfer to protect the equity principle. Under Section 6 of the Act, the general rule of transferability is established on the legal maxim named as, “Alienation Rei Prefertur Juri Accrescendi” which connotes “law favors alienation to accumulation”. Thus, any effort by anyone to limit the owner to alienate his interest in the property is stopped by the law. At the same time when a transferor dos not possess a valid interest in the property but makes a transfer for his private gain and enjoyment which is against public policy such transfer of the interest of the property should not permitted to transfer. Except given in section 6 of the Act, of which spes successionis is apart all other properties are transferable by the Act. Apart from Section 6 clauses, any person claiming non – transferability has to prove usage and custom.

For example: The person named X, has cared her invalid friend for thirty years, she may have every hope of succeeding to the property, but she has no right.[4]

Section 6(a) of TPA made spes successionis an anomaly to the law of transferability as per the provision of section 6, the doctrine include:

  • Possibility of an heir – apparent succeeding to an estate
  • Chance of a relation acquiring legacy on the death of  kinsman
  • Any other mere probability of a like nature.

In the case of Samir Kumar Haldar v. Nirmal Chandra Banerjee[5], where the transfer is not of right of expectancy of an heir apparent but of the property itself it cannot be said as transfer of a mere possibility to succeed. Where a person is not heard for a long time and is trusted to be deceased any transfer of his property made by his brother who is in enjoyment and ownership of the property itself cannot be entitled as void under transfer by spes successionis.


The alienation and transferability of property is a common law, however, there are few deviations to this common law which are cited in the provisions of Section 6 of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882, and from that whole listed deviation, one is spes successionis. The veracity is that an aimed conveyance of no existent property may when made for deliberation, be valid as a contract and when the object comes into existence equity secures upon the property and the contract to allocate becomes a completes assignment. It is well settled that a transfer of property clearly contemplates that the transferor has an interest in the property which is the sort to be conveyed.


[1] The Act deals with the contracts or agreements related to the sale of goods and are applicable to whole of India.

[2] Succession resulting from a legally executed testament. It is also known as right of inheritance.

[3] What may be transferred under Transfer of Property Act 1882


[5] (1975) Calcutta High Court

For more Blogs – CLICK HERE.

Lawyers Gyan is now on Telegram ( Follow us for regular legal updates. Follow us on InstagramLinkedInFacebook & Twitter or join our WhatsApp group.

Get Lawyers Gyan in your Email & Join 10000+ Lawyers!!


Lawyers Gyan has no control over above-listed items as it is directly from the customer or taken from other sources. Despite our best efforts, some of the content may contain errors. You can trust us, but please conduct your own checks too. In case of any discrepancy please write to


Spread the Love

Leave a Reply