How NRI Buyers Can Confirm Sellers NRI Status


In the realm of property transactions, especially those concerning NRIs (Non-Resident Indians), there’s often a cloud of uncertainty regarding an individual’s residential status. This uncertainty can pose challenges for both buyers and sellers. In this article, we will delve into the intricacies of recognising Seller NRI Status, illuminate the consequences of misrepresentation, and provide guidance for seamlessly navigating these complexities.

The Seller’s Perspective: Dealing with TDS

From the seller’s perspective, dealing with property transactions in India can be a complicated affair, especially when they are Non-Resident Indians (NRIs). One of the significant challenges they face is the imposition of a high Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) rate of 23% on the total sale value. This substantial financial burden often prompts some NRIs to contemplate misrepresentation by falsely claiming Indian residency to evade the hefty TDS. However, taking this risky shortcut can lead to dire consequences.

Sellers NRI Status


A Risky Shortcut

Attempting to evade TDS by misrepresenting NRI status may seem like a quick fix, but it’s fraught with peril. The Income Tax Department has the authority to open a case against NRIs for up to 16 years after the transaction. Imagine receiving a notice a decade later with no evidence to prove your innocence. The consequences can be financially devastating, not to mention the legal troubles that may arise from such misrepresentation.

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Buyer Beware: Consequences of Non-Compliance

Buyers, too, have their share of responsibilities in property transactions involving NRIs. It’s crucial that they ensure proper TDS deduction and compliance. Failure to do so can result in penalties and late fees accumulating at a rate of ₹300 per day. Picture the distress of receiving a notice years after the transaction, laden with these penalties.

Due Diligence and Legal Research

As a responsible buyer, you are expected to conduct due diligence regarding the property you plan to purchase. This should encompass confirming the seller’s residential status. Ignorance or deceit won’t suffice as excuses. Making a legally sound decision is paramount to a successful property transaction.

Spotting the NRI Seller

If you suspect the seller is an NRI, you can start by asking around the local community. In many cases, people are aware of their neighbors’ or acquaintances’ overseas residence. Parents often proudly share their children’s international living status. An inquiry in the neighborhood might yield valuable information, helping you make an informed decision.

Indemnity Bond: A Shield for Buyers

To mitigate the risk of dealing with a seller insistent on misrepresentation, buyers can request an indemnity bond. This document holds the seller accountable for potential losses or legal actions stemming from their falsehoods. It acts as a protective shield, assuring buyers that they won’t bear the brunt of any legal consequences resulting from the seller’s actions.

Notarized Statement: A Game-Changer for Deceivers

Another protective measure for buyers is asking the seller to provide a notarized statement affirming their residential status as a resident. If the seller refuses, this should raise concerns about their honesty. Lying under oath is a criminal offense that should be taken seriously. This notarized statement adds a layer of legal responsibility and helps in maintaining transparency in the transaction.

The Buyer’s Responsibility for Compliance

Buyers must grasp that compliance with TDS provisions falls on their shoulders. They should ensure the correct TDS is deducted and promptly deposited with the Income Tax Department. Adhering to proper compliance is the linchpin of a hassle-free property transaction. By doing so, buyers not only safeguard their interests but also ensure that they do not run afoul of the law.

The Bottom Line: Patience Pays Off

For both sellers and buyers, patience can be a valuable asset in navigating the complexities of NRI property transactions. Buyers should assure sellers of their willingness to cooperate in achieving full compliance. Most NRIs understand the importance of obeying the law and will comply. In the long run, it’s a win-win situation for all parties involved. This collaborative approach can lead to a smoother and legally sound property transaction.

In the intricate world of property transactions with NRIs, honesty and compliance are the foundations of a seamless and legally sound deal. By comprehending the repercussions of misrepresentation and taking measures to ensure transparency and compliance, buyers and sellers can embark on this journey confidently. Ultimately, a successful property transaction hinges on awareness, integrity, and patience.


In conclusion, NRI property transactions come with their own set of complexities, especially concerning the seller’s residential status and TDS implications. It’s crucial for both buyers and sellers to navigate these intricacies with care and diligence. Misrepresentation can lead to severe consequences, making it essential for all parties involved to act honestly and transparently. By following due diligence, requesting protective measures like indemnity bonds and notarized statements, and ensuring TDS compliance, a seamless and legally sound property transaction can be achieved. Patience, cooperation, and adherence to the law are the keys to a successful NRI property transaction.

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