If a contract is null and void it means that it no longer works or is no longer active.
Usually in a contract you will read something like “Should you refuse to adhere to the regulations set out in this contract it will be rendered null and void.”
It is normally not something you need to worry about, as long as you are playing by the rules of the contract. The clause is used to protect the people that offer the contract from getting stuck in an agreement that doesn’t work for them. This way, if you violate the terms of the contract, they don’t have to do anything and the contract is automatically cancelled.
You can also use null and void outside of negotiations and it means the same in everyday life. Anything that is rendered as useless because of something else is null and void.
Nadia: I want to discuss our contract Wes, you are not adhering to the conditions that we discussed and I have taken legal advice on the matter.
Wes: What? I am doing exactly what I am supposed to do.
Nadia: No you haven’t, you are always late and have taken too many sick days. Our contract is now null and void.
Wes: And what does that mean exactly?
Nadia: It means that you no longer work for this company, you can get your things and leave immediately.
Wes: What?! That can’t be legal.
Nadia: As I’ve just said, it is legal, I have asked my lawyer and he has advised me to do this.
Wes: You will see me in court, this is unacceptable!
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