Every agreement is restraint of the marriage of any person, other than a minor, is void. (Section 26). A minor’s marriage is not encouraged by the law and, in fact, prohibited in certain cases. Wherever it is allowed, if two adults make an agreement to the effect that a minor will jot be given in marriage, their agreement will be valid under this section.


An agreement by a husband at the time of his marriage with his wife not to marry a second wife while the first wife was living would be void.


As agreement without consideration is void but consideration has been dispensed within the following cases [Section 25(2)].

Registered writing: An agreement made without consideration is valid if, ‘it is expressed in writing and registered under the law for the time being in force for the registration of documents, and is made on account of natural love and affection between parties standing in near relation to each other.’ – Section 25(1).

An agreement without consideration is valid under section 25(1) only if the following requirements are complied with:

i)     The agreement is made by a written document.

ii)    The document is registered according to the law relating to registration in force at the time.

iii)    The agreement is made on account of natural love and affection.

iv)    The parties to the agreement stand in a near relation to each other.

a)    A registered agreement between a Muslim husband and his wife to pay his earnings to her does not need any consideration. Poono Bibee v. Fyez Baksh, (1874), 15 B.L.R. App. 5.

b)    A, for natural love and affection, promises to give his son B, Rs.1000. A puts his promise in writing and registered it. This is a contract. [ Illustration (b) to section 25].

Compensation of voluntary services: If a promise were made to compensate a person who has already voluntarily done something for the promisor, it would be enforceable although there is only past consideration. This is an exception to the principle that past consideration is no consideration [section 25(2)], and it has been dealt with before.
a)    D finds B’s purse and gives it to him. B promises to give D Rs.50.  This is contract.

b)    D supports B’s infant son. B promises to pay D’s expenses in so doing. This is a contract.      

Promises to pay a time-barred debt: If a promise is made in writing and signed by the person to be charged, to pay a debt of which the creditor might have enforced payment but for the law for limitation for suits, the promise would be considered made with good consideration.

D owes B Rs.1000 but the debt is barred by the Limitation Act. D signs a written promise to pay B Rs.500 on account of the debt. This is a contract.