Effects of a minor’s misrepresentation of his age while entering into an agreement


According to section 3, of the Indian majority act, 1875 ‘A minor is a person who has not completed “18” years of age. However, the minority will continue up to “21” years in case, if Hon. the court has appointed a guardian for a minor’s property.

A minor is incompetent to contract u/s 11of the Indian contact act, 1872. Minor incompetence is not a punishment but it is a protection given to minors by law. The law becomes the guardian of minors to protect their rights because their mental capacity is not well developed. The following are the legal rules regarding a minor’s agreement are as follows:-

1. An agreement by a minor is absolutely void: Where a minor is charged with obligations and the other contracting party seeks to enforce these obligations against the minor, in such a case the agreement is deemed as void-ab-initio.

2. He can be a promisee (or) a Beneficiary: Any agreement which is some benefit to the minor and under which he is required to bear no obligation is valid. Thus, a minor can be a beneficiary (or) a promisee.

3. His agreement cannot be ratified by him an attaining the age of majority: An agreement by minor is void-ab-initio and therefore ratification by minor is not allowed. There is a fundamental principle in law (i.e.., an agreement Void-ab-initio cannot be validated by subsequent action).

4. If he has received any benefit under a void agreement, he cannot ask to compensate (or) pay for it: Under sections 64 and 65 of the act, provides a minor cannot be ordered to make compensation for a benefit obtained in a void agreement. Because Section 64 and 65, which deals with restitution of benefit.

5. Minor can always plead minority: A minor’s contract being void, any money advanced to a minor on a promissory note cannot be recovered even though a minor procure (or) take a loan by falsely representing that he is of full age it will not stop him from pleading his minority in a suit, to recover the amount and the suit will be dismissed. “The rule of estoppel cannot be applied against a minor”

6. There can be no specific performance of the agreement entered into by him as they are void ab-initio: A contract entered into, on behalf of a minor by his parent/guardian (or) the manager of his estate can be expressly enforced by (or) against the minor, provide the contract is

• Within the authority of the guardian and

• For the benefit of the minor.

7. He cannot enter into a contract of partnership: A minor being incompetent to contract but be a partner of a partnership firm, but u/s 30 of the Indian Partnership Act, provides he can be admitted for the ‘benefits of a partnership’ with the consent of all the partners.

8. He can be an agent: A minor can be an agent. It is so because the act of the agent is the act of the principal and therefore, the principal is liable to the third parties for the act of a minor agent.

9. His parents/guardian is not liable for the contracts entered into by him: The parents/guardian is not liable for the contract entered into by a minor. The parents can be held liable for contracts for their minor children only when they are acting as agents.

10. A minor is liable in tort ( A civil wrong): Minors are liable for negligence causing injury (or) damage to the property that does not belong to them.

11. A minor is liable for necessaries: Minor’s estate is liable for necessaries supplied to minor during minority. Minor does not personally liable for the supply of necessaries. The necessaries such as food, clothing, and shelter, etc.., necessaries also include ‘goods’ and ‘services’.

Share this story

WhatsApp Channel Join Now