Institutions not to withhold Certificates in lieu of Dues

Colleges not to withhold certificates for pending dues

Educational institutions cannot withhold the educational certificates of students with respect to pending payment of fees or other dues, says the Madras High Court says in M Kesavan v The Principal and Others

The High Court adds that the settled position of law in this regard is that certificates of a student cannot be withheld for arrears of fees as the educational institution can claim no lien over it.

Court gave liberty to recover outstanding dues

The court directed the Principal of Cheran College of Pharmacy to return the original Transfer Certificate, mark sheet of X and XII to a former student and gave liberty to the college to take appropriate measures to recover the outstanding fees in the manner known to law.

High Court of Kerala also issued similar orders

The High Court of Kerala, in the case XX v CBSE Regional Office & Another, has categorically stated that Transfer Certificate (TC) of a student cannot be withheld by a school, on the ground that arrears of fees are due to the school.

The school is an unaided (Self-Financing) private school established by a minority community and run by a registered trust. The school dependes upon the fees collected from the students for payment of salary to the teachers, maintenance of the school, and for other running expenses.

The High Court of Kerala, duly recognizing that an unaided school has the right to get the fees for its sustenance, stated that TC could not be denied to a student to move on to another school of their choice.

However, the court added that if any amount of arrears of fees was due to the school, the school authority could take legal action against the petitioner for recovery of the arrears.


  1. M Kesavan v The Principal and Others
  2. XX v CBSE Regional Office & Another