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Digest of the Week | Capacity to Marry

Capacity to Marry

Hunt v. Worrod | 2017 ONSC 7397 | Ontario Superior Court of Justice

Family law --- Marriage — Validity of marriage — Capacity of parties

Prior to accident, applicant had on again, off again relationship with respondent — In June 2011, applicant was involved in ATV accident and sustained catastrophic brain injury — Applicant was released to care of his two sons — In October 2011, without sons' knowledge, applicant was picked up and brought to location where his marriage to respondent took place — Sons brought application, in part for determination that marriage was void ab initio — Application granted — Prior to accident, applicant had made up his mind not to marry respondent — Based on consensus of opinion of medical experts and witnesses, which was not contradicted by other medical experts, applicant did not have requisite capacity to marry respondent after accident — Applicant did not meet test of understanding nature of contract he was entering into and responsibilities contract created — At that time and up to present, applicant remained incapable of managing his own affairs — Pre-release medical summary by hospital medical team stated that applicant's brain injury affected his ability to recognize his cognitive impairments and this impaired awareness made it difficult for him to experience fully what was happening around him as well as to infer consequences of events which may jeopardize his personal safety.
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