What is the future protection mandate?

Flora Minaire
November 9, 2023
4 min. reading

What is the future protection mandate?

It's impossible to predict the future. Who can say exactly when they will be faced with a loss of autonomy or an inability to manage their affairs? The future protection mandate was created to respond to this problem and protect both people and their property.

This mandate is an ideal solution for protecting yourself against life's risks. By signing a mandate and appointing a mandatary, the signatory is assured of appointing in advance a trustworthy person to represent him/her when he/she is no longer able to do so.

In this article, we'll explain what a mandate for future protection is, how it works and how to set it up. This will enable you to make the best possible arrangements for the future protection of your person and property.

What is a future protection mandate? 

The future protection mandate was created by the law of March 5, 20071 reforming the legal protection of minors. It represents a major advance in family law and personal protection. It is a contract by which a person, the mandator, appoints in advance one or more persons, the mandataries, to represent him/her when, for health reasons, he/she is no longer able to do so him/herself.

Depending on particular needs and situations, the mandator may appoint several mandataries to take on some or all of the responsibilities. Thus, it is entirely possible to appoint one mandatary to look after the protection of the person, while another mandatary will be responsible for protecting property.

1Public life, Law of March 5, 2007 reforming the legal protection of adults, 2007

Why such a mandate? 

Anyone at risk of losing their capacity to manage their person or property can sign a future protection mandate. 

The mandate may concern : 

  • An adult or minor child suffering from an illness or disability; 
  • An elderly person at risk of losing some of his faculties;
  • An emancipated minor.

The advantage of such a mandate is that the principal does not lose his or her rights or capacity to perform legal acts. 

The document can cover : 

  • Assistance in personal life; 
  • Asset management ; 
  • Both personal and property.

What are the two types of mandates for future protection? 

Articles 477 to 487 of the French Civil Code provide the legal basis for the future protection mandate. According to this legal framework, there is not one, but two different types of mandate. However, they do not offer the same scope of power to the mandatary.

The private power of attorney

This first type of mandate confers limited powers. Generally speaking, it concerns only the protection of property. In addition, the person who agrees to take charge of proceedings on behalf of the claimant must report on the exercise of the mandate to the chief clerk of the district court.

To be admissible, certain conditions must be met. The mandate must : 

  • be drawn up on plain paper and countersigned by a lawyer. In this case, the lawyer's fees are to be paid by the claimant; 
  • Or be drawn up using the cerfa n°13592*04 form. This mandate must be registered with the tax authorities for a fee of €125.

In all cases, a mandate for future protection must be signed by both the mandator and the mandatary. 

The notarial mandate 

The second type of mandate gives greater powers to the mandatary, as it extends to the principal's assets and personal protection. In this case, the mandatary must report to the notary. 

This type of mandate is signed before a notary in the presence of the person organizing his or her future protection and by the person who will exercise the protective measure. Drafting the document costs around €300.

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Who can be appointed as a proxy? 

The mandatary may come from the close circle of the mandatary. Friends or family members are natural choices to become mandataries in such cases. However, it is also possible to entrust this mission to a professional such as a notary, lawyer or judicial representative.

Of course, the non-professional agent generally performs this task free of charge. However, the professional demands remuneration. It is therefore essential to make provision for this when drafting the mandate. 

How does the future protection mandate work? 

In order to fully understand the organization of the future protection mandate, it is necessary to precisely define its start and end periods.

When does it start? 

The aim of such a mandate is to protect the person who signs it. Consequently, as soon as the mandator can no longer act alone, the mandate for future protection begins. It should be added, however, that it is essential for an accredited physician on the list drawn up by the public prosecutor to ascertain that the person's mental or physical faculties have been impaired.

To begin taking care of the mandator, the mandatary must take the signed mandate and medical certificate to the clerk's office of the district court to request the start of the mandate.

When does it end? 

As soon as the mandate is no longer required, it terminates automatically. In other words, if the person concerned regains his or her faculties or dies, the mandate for future protection is terminated.

However, it is also possible to cancel or modify the mandate during the mandatary's lifetime in two very specific situations: 

  • The conditions of execution of the mandate or its implementation are contested; 
  • The principal requires additional protection. 

In either case, you need to apply to the Protection Litigation Judge. 

A valuable legal tool

While it's never easy to accept one's own vulnerability, setting up a mandate for future protection is a wise and effective act. It ensures that your person and property are managed and protected by a person you can trust in the event of a problem. 

Finally, this mandate integrates a global logic of foresight. Whether this involves taking out life insurance, drawing up a will or preparing for the transfer of digital assets, these actions facilitate the subsequent steps and procedures for loved ones.

Signing a mandate for future protection means taking a proactive, responsible decision for your future today.

👉 Read our article on digital inheritance and the law.