Minor’s Liability for Voidable Contract in Ontario
If a minor avoids a contract after the age of majority, do both parties simply walk away (no one owes anything to the other), or must the benefits obtained during the contract be returned (i.e., money given by the minor to the other party during the contract)?
The benefits must be returned.
If a minor buys a Corvette, and then decides to claim that the contract is voidable at their option, then they will be able to get out of the deal and not accept delivery.
However, as you can appreciate, if the minor keeps the Corvette for two years, then they can’t return it. They got a NEW Corvette and what they are planning to return is a two year old Corvette. That’s doesn’t work.
Also, most of the time when we are talking about minors, they will be very wealthy from either sports or entertainment.
They are only responsible for the “necessaries in life”, which of course depends upon the circumstances. I suppose it could be reasonably argued that a Corvette would be a necessary in life to Justin Bieber.
When it comes to real estate, a Seller may want to have someone guarantee the minor’s obligations, just in case they change their mind about the deal.
Brian Madigan LL.B., Broker