Park v Park [1953] 3 W.L.R. 1012

Also known as Re in the Estate of Park

Law of Nullity

Park v Park [1953] 3 W.L.R. 1012 is a Family Law case concerning the Law of Nullity.

Facts: The deceased (P) had remarried with X just before his death.  Furthermore, P executed a will which stated that part of his estate shall pass to X, as the lawful widow. As a result, X claimed as the lawful widow of the deceased and as one of the persons entitled to a share in P’s estate. However, the beneficiaries, relatives of P, claimed that P lacked the capacity when he married X and that the marriage was ineffective. 

Issue: Whether the marriage between P and X was effective.

Held: In Park v Park, the Court of Appeal held that P was capable of understanding the nature of the contract into which he was entering. Singleton LJ stated that “to ascertain the nature of the contract of marriage a man must be mentally capable of appreciating that it involves the responsibilities normally attaching to marriage. Without that degree of mentality, it cannot be said that he understands the nature of the contract”. 

References: [1954] P. 112, [1953] 3 W.L.R. 1012, [1953] 2 All E.R. 1411, [1953] 11 WLUK 6, (1953) 97 S.J. 830, [1953] C.L.Y. 1627

Read our notes on the Law of Nullity and other cases for more information.

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