• The term “document” as defined in Oxford Dictionary is “a deed, writing, inscription that furnishes evidence”.
• This is a definition of wide import and would include even a piece of paper on which something is written by hand or typed or printed. However in legal arena the word document is given a different connotation.
• The definition of term “document” as given in Section 3 of Indian Evidence Act, 1872 is “a document shall include any matter written, expressed or described upon any substance by means of letters, figures or marks or by more than one of those means, which is intended to be used, or which may be used for the purpose of recording the same”. The same definition is also given under Indian Penal Code.
• Documents are the foundation upon which the superstructure of a legal/contractual relationship is built. Documents are of great importance as they assume the character of primary evidence in determining the rights and obligations of the respective parties in the day to day conduct of the account as well as when dispute arises between them.
• The terms and conditions of loans/advances, securities charged and repayment are reduced in writing which in turn helps to avoid and resolve the ambiguities if any. Correct and properly executed valid documentation ensures safety of the creditor’s advances. It also helps in enforcing the security belonging to the borrowers when a suit is instituted in a court of law on default of the borrower
Proper documentation involves the following:
i) Selection of appropriate format of documents.
ii) Proper execution of the documents
iii) Due stamping of the documents as per Stamp Act (where ever required as per the law)
iv) Due registration with the appropriate authority agency / authority wherever required and within the time stipulated by law.