Null; ineffectual; nugatory; having no legal force or binding effect; unable, in law, to support the purpose for which it was intended. Hardison v. Gledhill, 72 Ga.App. 432, 33 S.E.2d 921, 924.
An instrument or transaction which is wholly ineffective, inoperative, and incapable of ratification and which thus has no force or effect so that nothing can cure it. In re Oliver, Bkrtcy. Minn., 38 B.R. 245, 248.
There is this difference between the two words "void" and "voidable": void in the strict sense means that an instrument or transaction is nugatory and ineffectual so that nothing can cure it; voidable exists when an imperfection or defect can be cured by the act or confirmation of him who could take advantage of it. The term "void," however, as applicable to conveyances or other agreements, has not at all times been used with technical precision, nor restricted to its peculiar and limited sense, as contradistinguished from "voidable"; it being frequently introduced, even by legal writers and jurists, when the purpose is nothing further than to indicate that a contract was invalid, and not binding in law.
But the distinction between the terms "void" and "voidable," in their application to contracts, is often one of great practical importance; and, whenever entire technical accuracy is required, the term "void" can only be properly applied to those contracts that are of no effect whatsoever, such as are a mere nullity, and incapable of confirmation or ratification. The word "void," in its strictest sense, means that which has no force and effect, is without legal efficacy, is incapable of being enforced by law, or has no legal or binding force, but frequently the word is used and construed as having the more liberal meaning of "voidable." The word "void" is used in statutes in the sense of utterly void so as to be incapable of ratification, and also in the sense of voidable and resort must be had to the rules of construction in many cases to determine in which sense the Legislature intended to use it. An act or contract neither wrong in itself nor against public policy, which has been declared void by statute for the protection or benefit of a certain party, or class of parties, is voidable only
Compare voidable
@ void ab initio
A contract is null from the beginning if it seriously offends law or public policy in contrast to a contract which is merely voidable at the election of one of the parties to the contract.
See also void contract
- void marriage
@ void contract
A contract that does not exist at law; a contract having no legal force or binding effect. Expression denotes that the parties to the transaction have gone through the form of making a contract, but that none has been made in law because of lack of some essential element of a contract, and such contract creates no legal rights and either party thereto may ignore it at his pleasure, in so far as it is executory. Griffin v. Smith, C.C.A.Ind., 101 F.2d 348, 350.
See also voidable contract
@ void for vagueness doctrine
A law which is so obscure in its promulgation that a reasonable person could not determine from a reading what the law purports to command or prohibit is void as violative of due process. The doctrine means that criminal responsibility should not attach where one could not reasonably understand that his contemplated conduct is proscribed. U.S. v. National Dairy Products Corp., Mo., 83 S.Ct. 594, 598, 372 U.S. 29, 91 L.Ed.2d 561.
Also, the First Amendment requires special clarity so that protected expression will not be chilled or suppressed
@ void judgment
One which has no legal force or effect, invalidity of which may be asserted by any person whose rights are affected at any time and at any place directly or collaterally. Reynolds v. Volunteer State Life Ins. Co., Tex.Civ.App., 80 S.W.2d 1087, 1092.
One which, from its inception is and forever continues to be absolutely null, without legal efficacy, ineffectual to bind parties or support a right, of no legal force and effect whatever, and incapable of confirmation, ratification, or enforcement in any manner or to any degree. Judgment is a "void judgment" if court that rendered judgment lacked jurisdiction of the subject matter, or of the parties, or acted in a manner inconsistent with due process. Klugh v. U.S., D.C.S.C., 620 F.Supp. 892, 901.
See also voidable judgment
@ void marriage
One not good for any legal purpose, the invalidity of which may be maintained in any proceeding between any parties, while a "voidable marriage" is one where there is an imperfection which can be inquired into only during the lives of both of the parties in a proceeding to obtain a judgment declaring it void. Such marriage is invalid from its inception, and parties thereto may simply separate without benefit of court order of divorce or annulment. Darling v. Darling, 44 Ohio App.2d 5, 335 N.E.2d 708, 710, 73 O.O.2d 5.
A "voidable marriage" is valid and not ipso facto void, until sentence of nullity is obtained; a "void marriage" is void ab initio. Minder v. Minder, 83 N.J.Super. 159, 199 A.2d 69, 71.
@ void on its face
An instrument is void on its face when an inspection will reveal its defects and invalidity
@ void transaction
One that has no force and effect and is incapable of legal enforcement.
See void
- void contract

Black's law dictionary. . 1990.

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