EqualsNull
The contract of Object.equals() states that for any non-null reference value x, x.equals(null) should return false. If x is null, a NullPointerException is thrown. Consider replacing equals() with the == operator.

Severity
WARNING
Tags
FragileCode

The problem

The contract of Object.equals() states that for any non-null reference value x, x.equals(null) should return false. Thus code such as

if (x.equals(null)) {
  ...
}

either returns false, or throws a NullPointerException if x is null. The nested block may never execute.

This check replaces x.equals(null) with x == null, and !x.equals(null) with x != null. If the author intended for x.equals(null) to return true, consider this as fragile code as it breaks the contract of Object.equals().

See Effective Java 3rd Edition ยง10: Objey the general contract when overriding equals for more details.

Suppression

Suppress false positives by adding the suppression annotation @SuppressWarnings("EqualsNull") to the enclosing element.