The endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) machinery, including ESCRT-III, localizes to the midbody and participates in the membrane-abscission step of cytokinesis. The ESCRT-III protein charged multivesicular body protein 1B (CHMP1B) is required for recruitment of the MIT domain-containing protein spastin, a microtubule-severing enzyme, to the midbody. The 2.5-A structure of the C-terminal tail of CHMP1B with the MIT domain of spastin reveals a specific, high-affinity complex involving a noncanonical binding site between the first and third helices of the MIT domain. The structural interface is twice as large as that of the MIT domain of the VPS4-CHMP complex, consistent with the high affinity of the interaction. A series of unique hydrogen-bonding interactions and close packing of small side chains discriminate against the other ten human ESCRT-III subunits. Point mutants in the CHMP1B binding site of spastin block recruitment of spastin to the midbody and impair cytokinesis.