Contractual Liability of Minors in Partnership

FIRM

There are many different types of partnerships, ranging from informal alliances between two individuals engaging in a short-term profit-making venture without any explicit  partnership agreement, to small family partnerships to large professional or company partnerships with many  participants,  a  comprehensive  partnership  agreement  and  a  management  structure  as complex as that of most corporations like in UK, USA”. This paper deals with the contractual liability  and rights  of minors with respect to partnership  under S.30 of partnership act  and S.11 of contracts act.

A minor, while not being a  full-  fledged partner in the company can only avail the benefits and  get his share in the profits with the consent of the partners. The position of law stand-  Minors have no liability and they don’t have to give any share in the loss  suffered  by  the  company.  In Shivgouda  Rajiv  Patil  v.  Chandrakant  Neelkanth Sedalge the  question  arose  as  to  whether  the  minor  partner    who  had  attained  majority subsequent  to  commitment  of  acts  of  insolvency  by  the  other  partners  could  be  held  to  be personally liable for the debts of the firm. A guardian can contract on the behalf of the minors as minors are incompetent to enter in a contract-  as long as it is not detriment to the minor’s interest.  These law are made to safe the interests of minors and for their protection as it was thought minors was immature in both mind and experience. 

COMPETENT TO CONTRACT

Section 11 of Indian  contract Act 1872 read as, “That every person is competent to contract who is of the age of majority according to law to which is subject and who is sound mind and not disqualified from contracting by  any law to which he is subject”. The following persons are competent to contract namely i)  “Who is major; ii) Who is of sound mind. It is obvious that  minors  and  unsound  mind  person  cannot  make  a  contract.  A  Major  person  means  a person who has attained the age of 18 years. The age of majority has been decided  by Indian Majority Act 1875. In case of guardian appointed by the court, the age shall be 21 years”.

CONCEPT OF MINOR

A person who has not attained the age of majority is a minor.  “The term minor/minors is no where defined in  the contract . But if  anyone read the wording of Section 11 which spells

a minor is a person who has not attained the age of 18 years. The age of majority is defined in Section 3 of Majority Act. A person who is of 17 years old and 364 days old, he will be called as a minor in the eyes of law. Minors interest is protected by the law. Minor should not enter  into  the  contract  so  as  to  provide  a  protection  to  the  minor  so  that  nobody  can  take advantage of his minority. Because law presumes that minor mind is not mature enough to understand the nature of agreements. It means what is fair, what is unfair, what is true, what is false, what is genuine and what is dupe. So in a way by debarring or by disqualifying a person who is a minor to enter into the contract, it is all in the interest of the minor. Minor age is understood in different legislations in India different age groups which are discussed under the side heading minors in trade union members and labour laws.

Aishwarya Says:

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