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Report No. 59

6.18. Effect of fraud not relating to identity or ceremony.-

In relation to fraud, however, English courts have taken a narrower view. In Moss v. Moss, 1897 Probate 263 (266,267,269)., the point directly in issue was whether the marriage was vitiated by the wife's fraud in stating to the husband (in order to gain his consent to the marriage), that she was not pregnant per alium, when, in fact, she was. But in deciding this point, Sir Francis Jeune P. also examined the effect of duress and fear, and held that these factors which also caused "an absence of consenting will," likewise rendered the marriage void ab initio; he held that fraud or error invalidated a marriage only if the petitioner was thereby deceived as to the identity of the respondent, and, since the petitioner (husband in that case) was deceived not as to the respondent's identity but as to her pregnancy, the marriage was valid.

Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 and Special Marriage Act, 1954 Back

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