Undue Influence


Meaning :

Coercion means, “making a person to give his consent by threat or force”.

Meaning :

Undue influence is “an improper use of power over the other party to make him enter into contract”.



 According to Section 15 of Indian Contract Act 1872,
“Coercion” is the committing, or threating to commit, any act forbidden by the Indian Penal Code. or the unlawful detaining, or threatening to detain, any property, to the prejudice of any person whatever, with the intention of causing any person to enter into an agreement.

Definition :

According to Section 16 of Indian Contract Act 1872
        (1) A contract is said to be induced by “under influence” where the relations subsisting between the parties are such that one of the parties is in a position to dominate the will of the other and uses that position to obtain an unfair advantage over the other.

      (2) In particular and without prejudice to the generally of the foregoing principle, a person is deemed to be in a position to dominate the will of another –

      (a) where he hold a real or apparent authority over the other, or where he stands in a fiduciary relation to the other; or

      (b) where he makes a contract with a person whose mental capacity is temporarily or permanently affected by reason of age, illness, or mental or bodily distress.

      (3) Where a person who is in a position to dominate the will of another, enters into a contract with him, and the transaction appears, on the face of it or on the evidence adduced, to be unconscionable, the burden of proving that such contract was not induced by undue influence shall be upon the person in a position to dominate the will of the other.


Example :

‘X’ threatens ‘Y’ with a Gun to enter into an agreement with ‘Z’

Example :  

(a)    A having advanced money to his son, B, during his minority, upon B’s coming of age obtains, by misuse of parental influence, a bond from B for a greater amount than the sum due in respect of the advance. A employs undue influence.
         (b) A, a man enfeebled by disease or age, is induced, by B’s influence over him as his medical attendant, to agree to pay B an unreasonable sum for his professional services, B employs undue influence.

         (c) A, being in debt to B, the money-lender of his village, contracts a fresh loan on terms which appear to be unconscionable. It lies on B to prove that the contract was not induced by undue influence.


An agreement entered into under coercion is voidable at the option of one party

If contract s entered into by obtaining consent through undue influence, the contract is voidable


In Coercion relationship between the parties may or may not exist

In undue influence there must be relation between the parties to the contract.


In Coercion there exists use of physical force

In Undue Influence there exists use of moral force or mental pressure


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