Void Contract vs. Voidable Contract: What's the Difference?

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Key Difference

People often get confused between the terms, void contract and voidable contract. Even after sounding quite the same they are quite different to each other regarding the nature of the contract. As we know that ‘void’ means not valid or legally binding, the void contract is the contract that is entirely illegal, and following this, it can’t be enforced. Even when one of the parties breach the contract the void contract, the other party can’t claim their damage as this contract is unenforceable by the law. On the other hand, voidable is the legal or the valid contract in which others bound one of the parties. The bound party, in this case, has to follow the certain terms and conditions subjected by the other party. The unbound party has the right to enforce or cancel the contract.

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Comparison Chart

Void ContractVoidable Contract
DefinitionThe void contract is the contract that is entirely illegal and following it can’t be enforced.The voidable contract is the legal or the valid contract which becomes if one of the engaging parties cancels or revokes the contract.
ExistenceThe void contract doesn’t even exist from the very beginning as it has no legal enforcement.The voidable contract is legal in nature from the beginning and is also valid.
ExampleAll the illegal activities including prostitution, drugs, and gambling have such contracts. One of the most prominent examples of the voidable contract.The example of voidable contract can be the agreement with the minor; the minor can get into the contract according to the will, although if he breaches the terms and conditions of this contract, no strict action can be taken against him as minors have liberty to change their mind.
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What is Void Contract?

The void contract is the entirely illegal or invalid type of contract in which none of the parties can claim as it is unenforceable by the law. As we know that the term voids refers to something not valid or legally bind, we can say that the void contract is the contract that is null and has no legal effect. This type of contract is unenforceable by the law so if one breaches this type of contract that other party can’t take any legal action against them. The void contract is null or illegal right from the beginning, so sometimes such contracts are called void ab initio. That means that the contract never existed even from the very beginning. The term ‘void ab initio’ tells that this type of contract was never a legal or valid one even when it was initiated. As the void contract is void from the outset or has no contract right from the beginning that means parties can’t do any action against one and another.  All the illegal activities including prostitution, drugs, and gambling have such contracts. The parties involved in illegal activities commit a crime so if one of the parties ditches the other party no legal action against them can be taken. The contracts which are against the public policy or restrain the individuals from proceeding their legal activities are also some of the prominent examples of the void contract.

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What is Voidable Contract?

The voidable contract is the valid or the legal contract, which can be enforced. In this type of contract, one party is bounded by the other party. The unbounded party is free to make decisions and can enforce or cancel the contract, according to their will. The one unbounded party is in the driving seat in this type of contract, and all the decision making is made by it single-handily. One of the most prominent examples of the voidable contract is the agreement with the minor; the minor can get into the contract according to his/her will, although if he breaches the terms and conditions of this contract, no strict action can be taken against him as minors have liberty to change their mind. The voidable contract exists from the beginning, but it becomes invalid after one of the parties engaging in the contract cancels or call off the contract. The other time when the contract is called the voidable contract when one of the parties engaging in the contract was intoxicated or doesn’t have the required capacity to make up the contract. The contract which was made on the mutual mistake of the parties or the non-disclosure of one or more material facts are also classified as the voidable contract.

Void Contract vs. Voidable Contract

  • The void contract is the contract that is entirely illegal and following it can’t be enforced. On the other hand, the voidable contract is the legal or the valid contract which becomes if one of the engaging parties cancels or revokes the contract.
  • The void contract doesn’t even exist from the very beginning as it has no legal enforcement, whereas the voidable contract is legal in nature from the beginning and is also valid.
  • All the illegal activities including prostitution, drugs, and gambling have such contracts. One of the most prominent examples of the voidable contract. The example of voidable contract can be the agreement with the minor; the minor can get into the contract according to the will, although if he breaches the terms and conditions of this contract, no strict action can be taken against him as minors have liberty to change their mind.

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