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Collective guarantee: the French notaire's liability

The obligations of french notaire: Maintain an insurance for the financial consequences of its activity with a reputedly solvent insurance company and be responsible towards all the clients.


Obligation of professional civil liability insurance

According to Article 13 of the Decree of the 20th of May 1955, all Notaries are required to ensure their professional civil liability. This obligation is not particular since it concerns other professionals with very various activities (doctors, lawyers, bailiff, etc.).

This insurance covers damages caused to third parties arising from errors, mistakes or negligence on the part of the Notary or his/her staff. It is used in particular in the event of litigation and prejudice .


Obligation of solidarity with all the other members of the profession: Collective guarantee

In parallel to this traditional insurance, the French Notariat has set up a collective guarantee covering the financial consequences of mistakes and intentional negligence which may not be supported by classical techniques of insurance. This is a unique guarantee among legal professions.

This collective guarantee presents two types of supporting entities:

  • Regional guarantee funds, which financial resources are provided by contributions made by the Notaries depending on the considered region,
  • and a Central guarantee fund, which financial resources are provided by contributions made by all Notaries in France.

Thus, in the event of damage caused to a customer by a Notary in the exercise of his professional duties, the financial coverage of this damage shall be supported:

  • By the company covering the risk of professional civil liability and, if needed, by the Regional guarantee fund;
  • Finally, and again if needed, by the National guarantee fund;
  • As last resort, if all these remedies have proved insufficient, by all the Notaries in France, among them.