What Makes a Contract Void

Contracts are integral parts of any business transaction, as they ensure all parties involved agree to the terms and conditions of the deal. However, there are instances when a contract can become void due to the presence of certain factors or circumstances. In this article, we will discuss what makes a contract void and the implications that come with it.

Lack of Capacity

One of the main reasons why a contract can become void is if one of the parties involved lacks the legal capacity to enter into an agreement. This can happen in cases where a party is underage or lacks mental capacity, rendering their consent to the contract invalid. In situations like this, the contract is deemed void, and all obligations pertaining to it cease to exist.

Fraud or Misrepresentation

When one or both parties in a contract engage in fraudulent activities or misrepresent facts to induce the other party to enter into an agreement, the contract can be rendered void. For instance, if a company enters into a partnership agreement with another business based on fraudulent information, the contract becomes void, and the affected parties can rightfully terminate the agreement.

Illegal Activities

When a contract involves the performance of illegal activities, it automatically becomes void. For example, if a contract stipulates that a company must engage in fraudulent activities to fulfill its obligations, the contract is considered void, and the terms of the agreement cannot be enforced.

Undue Influence or Coercion

If one party in a contract exerts undue influence or coercion on the other party to sign the agreement, the contract can be void. In cases where there is evidence that one party took advantage of the other’s vulnerability to coerce them into agreeing to unfair terms, the contract can be deemed void.

Unconscionable Terms

Contracts that contain unconscionable terms, or those that are excessively unfair or one-sided, can be voided by a court of law. Courts can declare such contracts invalid if they consider the terms to be unjust.


Contracts are legally binding documents that govern business transactions. However, they can be rendered void if certain factors are present, such as lack of capacity, fraud or misrepresentation, illegal activities, undue influence or coercion, and unconscionable terms. If a contract is void, it is as if it never existed, and the parties are not bound to fulfill its obligations.

As a business owner or individual, it is vital to understand the factors that can void a contract to avoid any legal issues that may arise. Seeking the services of a legal expert can help ensure that all contracts are legally binding and enforceable.