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Vocabulary: Annul & Nullify

19/05/16 Vocabulary: Annul & Nullify

e-legal lesson

These words have much the same meaning (“to counteract the force, effectiveness, or existence of”).

Annul more strongly suggests abolishing or making nonexistent by legal action (e.g. to annul a marriage).
If at any time the seisin happens to be without a home it immediately returns to the transferor (or to his heirs), and all subsequent interests are annulled and destroyed.
Annul frequently appears in the verbose phrase annul and set aside; the last three words of that phrase are unnecessary.

Nullify has a broader meaning, and generally carries no necessary implication of legal action.
The Eighth Circuit nullified a breach-of-contract judgment obtained against the corporation in an Iranian court.
The senator’s vote was not nullified, but rather cast in the absence of certain information.

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