Drawing up a mandate is quite straightforward. You have two options.
This strange-sounding term simply means that you write the mandate yourself or choose someone else to do it for you. You may use an attorney, and you should certainly do so if the administration of your property is a complex matter.
You have to sign the document in the presence of two witnesses. They:
Although you have to tell the witnesses what the document is, you do not have to disclose its exact content. For example, you could simply say "this is my protection mandate".
Registering your mandate
When your mandate is registered with the Barreau du Québec or the Chambre des notaires, it is easier to trace.
Someone else may sign the mandate on your behalf following your instructions, if you are physically unable to do so. Both witnesses should countersign the document immediately, in your presence.
You should then put the original in a safe place; it is also advisable to give a copy to the mandatary.
If an attorney prepares the document, it will be listed on the Registre des dispositions testamentaires et des mandats du Québec.
With this option, the notary advises you and helps you to express your wishes clearly to reflect your needs and family situation. The notary will keep the original document and give you a copy. They will also register the mandate on the Registre des dispositions testamentaires et des mandats du Québec in the same way as an attorney.
If you have not registered your mandate and given it to your mandatary, put the original in a safe place and tell them where it is, so that they have access to the document when the time comes.
It is always a good idea to inform your family that you have drawn up a mandate, and to tell them who the mandatary is. That way, you know they will act promptly if you become unable to take care of yourself as a result of an accident or illness.
After you have drawn up your mandate and while you are still in possession of your faculties, all sorts of things may happen: the person you chose as mandatary may become too frail for the task, they may move away or die, or you may no longer trust them! If for some reason you are no longer happy with what is in your mandate, we advise you to amend it. When you do so, you will need to follow exactly the same steps as before.