It means a physical partition of the property of the family, i.e. where property admits of a physical division. But mere division of the income from the family property without division of property shall not be considered as a partition.
In case property does not admit the physical division, such division as the property admits or mere severing of relationship shall not be considered as partition.
If a joint family has come to an end, in fact and in law but no physical division of the property has taken place, the family will be deemed to continue as Hindu Undivided Family.
Where the joint family continues hut only some properties are partitioned by physical division and other continue to be owned by Hindu undivided family. H.U.F. shall be assessable for the income of the properties still owned by it.
There Finance Act (2) 1980 has amended section 171 of the Act to provide for banning of partial partition of the property of Hindu Undivided Family as a measure to check tax evasion. With effect from 31-12-78, any partition of the property of the H.U.F. shall be deemed to have not taken place and no benefit under income-tax Act shall be available on account of such partition.