Criteria of Commercialization

Question: What properties can be commercialized by Lahore Development Authority (“LDA”)?


LDA has laid down rules defining zones in the city. In order to know if your property can be commercialized you shall tally specifications of your property with the details provided in the rules as well as ascertain the permitted commercial use allowed on such property. For further clarification on LDA zoning rules contact BSOL.

Process of getting property commercialized

Question: What is the Commercialization process?


The commercialization process differs depending on the type of property and its intended purpose. Some basic steps include;

a)      Paying building plan security fee to LDA for scrutiny of your construction/development/refurbishing plan;

b)      Depending on the commercial use the plot will either be temporarily or annually commercialized;

c)       The plot owners will have to pay the commercialization fee or the fee for conversion of land use. Commercialization fee for intercity is 20% of the value of the commercial land as per valuation table, or twenty percent of the average sale price of preceding twelve months of commercial land in the vicinity, if valuation table is not available.

For a detailed opinion on the matter please contact the legal team of BSOL.

Can LDA commercialize your plot without your consent?

Question: Can LDA change a residential plot to a commercial plot?


Yes, LDA is within its powers to revise the category/zone of a plot. In the event LDA considers your plot to be commercial it will consequentially levy betterment fee on plot owners of land situated in an area considered commercial by LDA. The Authority shall assess the betterment fee keeping in view the following criteria:(a) total covered area of the proposed commercial building; and (b) typology ( proposed use) of the building. For further queries on the issue of LDA commercializing your plot contact BSOL’s legal team.

Pre-requisites of acquiring land.

Question: Pre-requisite of acquiring land for public purpose by the Government or by the Company.


Whenever it appears to the Collector of the District that land in any locality is needed or is likely to be needed for any public purpose or for a Company, a notification to that effect shall be published in the official Gazette, and the Collector shall cause public notice of the substance of such notification to be given at convenient places in the said locality. The notification issued shall be made under section 5 of Land Acquisition Act, 1894 and shall dictate the exact area of land needed and details of the purpose. The issuance of notice and that too under the right law is crucial in the event this is not been done legal recourse is available. For further details contact our team.

Right to object acquisition of your land.

Question: Can you object to such acquisition of land?


Yes, any interested person can object to the proposed acquisition of land with in thirty days from the time the notification was issued. A person shall be deemed to be interested in land that would be entitled to claim an interest in compensation if the land were acquired. The objection shall be brought to the collector. The collector shall then listen to the arguments of the objector and reduce them into a report including his recommendation on the objections which shall then be transferred to the Commissioner for decision. In case the land is intended to be acquired by a Company the collector shall also provide his recommendation over the area of land needed. The objection shall be preferably presented by a lawyer. For assistance in presenting your objection contact our team.

Ascertaining compensation for acquisition of land for public purpose

Question: What matters shall be considered in ascertaining adequate compensation for the land to be acquired?


In determining the amount of compensation to be awarded for land acquired under this Act, the Court shall take into consideration–

a)      first, the market-value of the land at the date of the notification was issued;

b)      if the market-value has been increased in consequence of the land being put to a use which is unlawful or contrary to public policy that use shall be disregarded and the market-value shall be deemed to be the market-value of the land if it were put to ordinary use; and

c)       if the market-value of any building has been increased in consequence of the building being so overcrowded as to be dangerous to the health of the inmates, such overcrowding shall be disregarded and the market-value shall be deemed to be the market-value of the building if occupied by such number of persons only as can be accommodated in it without risk of danger to health from overcrowding.

d)      the damage sustained by the person interested, by reason of the taking of any standing crops or trees which may be on the land at the time of the Collector’s taking possession thereof;

e)      the damage (if any) sustained by the person interested, at the time of the Collector’s taking possession of the land, by reason of severing such land from his other land;

f)       the damage (if any) sustained by the person interested, at the time of the Collector’s taking possession of the land, by reason of the acquisition injuriously affecting his other property, movable or immovable, in any other manner, or his earnings;

g)      if, in consequence of the acquisition of the land by the Collector, the person interested is compelled to change his residence or place of business, the reasonable expenses (if any) incidental to such change; and

h)      the damage (if any) bona fide resulting from diminution of the profits of the land between the time of the publication of the declaration under section 6 and the time of the Collector’s taking possession of the land.


i)        In addition to the market-value of the land as above provided, the Court shall award a sum of fifteen per centum on such market-value, in consideration of the compulsory nature of the acquisition, if the acquisition has been made for a public purpose and a sum of twenty-five per centum on such market-value if the acquisition has been made for a Company.

The increased amount from the market-value is mostly negotiated by parties. Make sure that you hire a lawyer to ensure that your interest is best represented and you get the best price for your land. Also it is extremely important to ensure that authorities do not pay you less that what is rightfully yours. For further details on negotiating the price contact our legal team


Dispute as to compensation

Question: If there are many person having interest in the land and they can’t agree to one compensation price what shall be done?


The person of interest shall collectively come to a consensus however if they don’t they shall then the collector may refer the dispute to the court. It urged by the BSOL legal team that alternate dispute resolution to be adopted for such issues. For inquiring further on the matter contact BSOL.

Procedure of taking possession of land acquired for for public purpose

Question: What is the acquisition procedure?


After the compensation has been made to the owner then a declaration shall be made to the effect of land’s acquisition. After declaration the Collector shall take order for acquisition and mark, measure and plan the land development. The Collector shall then cause public notice to be given at convenient places on or near the land to be taken, stating that the Government intends to take possession of the land, and that claims to compensation for all interests in such land may be made to the land owners. For detailed procedure contact BSOL

Acquisition of house/factory for public purpose

Question: Can a house or factory be acquired for public purpose?


The Government nor any Company can acquire for public purpose try acquiring a part only of any house, manufactory or other building. If the owner desires that the whole of such house, manufactory or building shall be so acquired: Provided that the owner may, at any time before the Collector has made his award, by notice in writing withdraw or modify his expressed desire that the whole of such house, manufactory or building shall be so acquired: Provided also that, if any question shall arise as to whether any land proposed to be taken under this Act does or does not form part of a house, manufactory or building within the meaning of this section, the Collector shall refer the determination of such question to the Court and shall not take possession of such land until after the question has been determined. For detailed information on when a house may be acquired contact our legal team.

Two purchasers of a property and one ownership title. Which purchaser will be the owner?

Question: What happens if the same property is sold twice?


In the event the same property is sold twice then the person who has acquired the title with good intention and had no knowledge of conflicting rights or defective titled shall be considered the owner of the property as he will be considered a bona fide buyer by the court. In order to ascertain the general criteria of a bona fide purchaser you can consult with our legal team.

Two bona fide buyers of property.

Question: When two bona fide buyers have acquired the titled to a property then which one of these two shall be considered the owner of the property?


There is an important law principle that no man can convey a title other than what he has. If a person has already affected a transfer, he cannot derogate from his grant and deal with the property free from the rights created under the earlier transaction. Since the transfer of title to the subsequent buyer shall already be defected protection or reservation in favour of a subsequent transferee who has no knowledge of the prior transfer will not be accorded by law. However a bona fide subsequent transferee may plead and justify to the court his entitlement to the property depending on subjective facts of your case. For a detailed analysis on the matter you may consult our legal team.

Forged titled documents.

Question: What legal remedy does the law prescribe for forged documents ownership?


Forgery is crime that is punishable up to 7 years however in order to prove forgery these three limbs shall be proven in the court: a) make any false document; b)Intention to cause damage or injury; and c) Intention to claim or support any title. Once the forged document is proven in the court then subsequently the sale agreement executed between parties on the basis of these title documents will also become void. For further details contact us.

Fake Power of Attorney

Question: What happens if somebody forges power of attorney giving rights to transfer, dispose and exercise ownership rights?


The act of making a fake power of attorney is committing the crime of cheating under the criminal code. In order to prove cheating the following limbs should be satisfied; a) Deceiving any person; b) Induce to deliver any property; and c) Make, alter, and destroy valuable security. The act also justifies. The making of a fake power of attorney will also come under forgery. Any transaction entered into on the basis of fake power of attorney shall be considered void once it is proved in the court that the power of attorney is not authentic.

Seller's refusal to sell the property.

Question: Can a seller refuse to act on the sale agreement after it has been executed and signed?


No, the seller cannot refuse from acting on the sale agreement after it has been concluded unless the sale agreement specifically provides that the seller has a right to do the same. In the event the seller does renege from selling the property then the buyer shall file a suit for specific performance in the court. For further information on filing a suit for specific performance contact us.

Stay order in Property cases

Question:  Instances relating to property law under which stay can be easily acquired from the court?


Where in any suit it is proved by affidavit or otherwise-

 (a) that any property in dispute in a suit is in danger of being wasted, damaged or alienated by any party to the suit, or wrongfully sold in execution of a decree, or

 (b) that the defendant threatens, or intends, to remove or dispose of his property with a view to [defrauding] his creditors,

(c) that the defendant threatens to dispossess, the plaintiff or otherwise cause injury to the plaintiff in relation to any property in dispute in the suit,

The Court may order and grant a temporary injunction to restrain such act, or make such other order for the purpose of staying and preventing the wasting, damaging, alienation, sale, removal or disposition of the property or dispossession of the plaintiff, or otherwise causing injury to the plaintiff in relation to any property in dispute in the suit] as the Court thinks fit, until the disposal of the suit or until further orders. For further details on the matter contact us.

Ex-parte Decree/Stay

Question: Revocation of Ex-parte order in Property cases


A party against whom an ex parte decree is passed can seek relief by the following ways:  

a)      Set Aside: Applying to the Court which has passed such decree to set aside the decree. 

b)      Appeal: Preferring an appeal against the decree. 

c)       Review: Applying for revision  ; and

d)      Fraud: Suit on fraudulent grounds.

All the remedies are concurrent and can be prosecuted concurrently. For further details on the matter contact us.

Drafting Sale Agreements for Property

Question: Is there a way I can revoke the sale agreement after I have accepted the earnest money to pursue a better price offer? 


Earnest money is consideration for the contract of sale executed between the parties therefore under law you are obligated to perform the contract. Revoking the contract for reasons of better offer will be a breach of the contract and will attract legal consequences. However in order to assure that you are not been under payed for your property you may at the time of the drafting of the contract include a provisions that makes sale agreement and eventually transfer of property contingent on market price evaluation. That is,carefully include terms and conditions under which the consideration in form of "earnest money" shall be effective e.g the earnest money shall be treated as consideration to the contract if the complete sale price is adequate subject to market survey. In case the sale price is inadequate then the seller shall return the earnest money and the contract shall be considered void. 

LDA Building Regulations

Question:  LDA building regulations (LDA regulations) for construction of house.


It is important to follow LDA regulation prior to starting construction of your house.

 The following shall help you understand them.

a)      Building Height

i.                     The height of any building other than Apartment Buildings measured from the crown of the road to the top of the parapet wall (exclusive of chimney stacks, lift heads and water tower) shall not exceed 38 ft (11.58 m).

ii.                   In case of Apartment Building the maximum building height allowed on residential plots measured from the crown of the road to the top of the parapet wall (exclusive of chimney stacks, lift heads and water tower) shall not exceed 45 ft (13.72m).

iii.                  The total number of storey permissible in an apartment building on residential plots, excluding basements, shall not be more than four. Each storey shall have a minimum building height of 9-ft 6-inches (2.9m), other than the basement.


b)      Porch

i.                     In case of plot size 10 Marlas and above, a car porch not exceeding 20-ft (6.1m) in length shall be permissible in the side space. In case of corner plots car porch shall be permissible along longer side. In case of sites with minimum 5-ft (1.5m) side space, construction of a room over the car porch equal to its area shall also be permissible.


c)       Ground Coverage (GC) and Floor Area Ration (FAR)

i.                     For  an area of land less than 5 marlas- the GC shall be 80% and FAR shall be 1:1.18

ii.                   For an area less than 10 marls but more than 5 marlas the GC shall be 75% and FAR shall be 1:1.8

iii.                  For an area less than I kanal but more than 10 marlas the GC shall be 70% and FAR shall be 1:1.5

iv.                 For an area less than 2 kanal but more than 1 kanal the GC shall be 65% and FAR shall be 1:1.4

v.                   For an area of 2 kanal and above the GC shall be 60% and FAR shall be 1:1.3

Sham housing schemes

Question:  How to protect myself from sham housing schemes?


The following steps are vital before investing in any real estate especially in new housing schemes:

a)      Check with Development authorities for valid approval to set up the housing scheme. Lahore Development Authority (LDA) for Lahore, Capital Development Authority (CDA) for Islamabad and Gawadar Development Authority for Gawadar.

b)      Invest some time in market research. Try ascertaining a mean price of the land that you intend to buy in the market. This will ensure that you do not over pay for the land.

c)       Visit the specific property you intend to buy, procure any legal documents asserting its legal existence and ownership.

d)      When buying the land through the installment schemes, make sure to understand the terms and conditions of the contract of purchase. Discuss the provisions of the agreement with the lawyer.

e)      Ensure that the time of possession of the land is and property transfer is clearly specified in the agreement. Stalled and uncertain possession dates and transfer time is a warning sign!

f)       Make sure to thoroughly understand the termination and revocation clause of the agreement, since this is usually the clause that leads to housing schemes easily defrauding you and extorting your money.