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Comparison of Defective Contracts

1.) As to defect
Void contracts: caused by lack of essential elements or illegality
Voidable contracts: defect is caused by vices of consent
Rescissible contracts: caused by injury/damage either to one of the parties or a 3rd person
Unenforceable contracts: caused by lack of form, authority or capacity of both parties not
cured by presciption
2.) As to effect
Void contracts: no legal effect, as a general rule
Voidable contracts: valid and enforceable until they're annulled by a competent court
Rescissible contracts: valid and enforceable until rescinded by a competent court
Unenforceable contracts: can't be enforced by a proper action in court
3.) As to prescription to declare nullity
Void contracts: no prescription for a declaration of nullity, inexistence or defense of
nullity
Voidable contracts: action for annulment or defense of annulability can prescribe
Rescissible contracts: action for prescription can prescribe
Unenforceable contracts: corresponding action for recovery if there was total or partial
performance of the unenforceable contract under no. 1 or 3 Art. 1403 of the Civil Code
may prescribe
4.) As to curative effect of prescription
Void contracts: can't cured by prescription
Voidable contracts: can be cured by prescription
Rescissible contracts: can be cured by prescription
Unenforceable contracts: can't be cured by prescription
5.) As to ratification
Void contracts: can't be ratified
Voidable contracts: can be ratified
Rescissible contracts: don't need to be ratified
Unenforceable contracts: can be ratified
6.) As to who can assail/question/attack
Void contracts: not just the contracting parties, but also a 3rd person whose interest is
directly affected
Voidable contracts: only a contracting party

Rescissible contracts: not just the contracting parties, but also a 3rd person who is
prejudiced or damaged by the contract
Unenforceable contracts: only a contracting party
7.) As to direct or collateral attack
Void contracts: can be attacked both directly and collaterally
Voidable contracts: can be attacked both directly and collaterally
Rescissible contracts: direct attack only
Unenforceable contracts: can be attacked both directly and collaterally.