Tutorship to the property of a minor
Obligations related to the administration of the property of a minor
As legal, dative or suppletive tutor, to ensure sound administration of the minor’s patrimony, you must act in accordance with your legal obligations, some of which are related to the oversight of your administration (form a tutorship council, make an inventory, produce an annual administration report, etc.). For legal or suppletive tutors, these obligations apply when the patrimony of the minor is worth more than $40,000. For dative tutors, they are imposed on you upon institution of the dative tutorship.
Obligation to report
Even if it is worth $40,000 or less, legal or suppletive tutors may not use the patrimony of the minor for their own purposes. They must also report on their administration to the minor once the latter reaches full age.
For more information about your obligations, consult the following guides:
Form the tutorship council
The law provides for oversight of a tutorship to the property of a minor by a tutorship council.
A tutorship council must therefore be formed when the administration of the legal or suppletive tutors is placed under oversight or when a dative tutorship is instituted. You can petition the court to call a meeting of relatives of the minor and persons connected to him by marriage or a civil union, and his friends for the purpose of forming a tutorship council. You can also hire a lawyer or a notary to make the arrangements.
A priority step
The formation of the tutorship council by the court may take time.
Be sure to start the process with the court as soon as possible.
Authorizations granted by the tutorship council
The formation of a tutorship council is important because you will need its authorization, for example, to:
- renounce a succession left to the minor;
- accept a gift with a charge on behalf of the minor, i.e., a gift with obligations attached. For example, if the minor is gifted a building with an outstanding mortgage balance;
- sell or mortgage a major property belonging to the minor with a value of $40,000 or less;
- modify the security;
- exceptionally use the minor’s patrimony to cover expenses related to their education, health, or workplace integration.
The court will also ask for the tutorship council’s opinion before authorizing you to:
- sell a building or a major family property with a value that exceeds $40,000;
- take out a mortgage loan for more than $40,000.
Take inventory of the patrimony
You must make an inventory consisting of a list of all possessions belonging to the minor worth $100 or more, as well as their debts. The inventory will give you an accurate idea of the nature and value of the minor’s patrimony entrusted to your administration and placed under oversight. It will also help the tutorship council to determine the security amount.
The inventory will also act as a reference when it comes time to submitting a rendering of accounts on your administration at the end of your term as tutor to the property.
Any interested person may contest the inventory and ask you to draw up a new one.
Moreover, if you are the legal or suppletive tutor to several minors who each have a patrimony that exceeds $40,000, you must produce a separate inventory for each of them. When you are the dative tutor to several minors, regardless of the value of their patrimonies, you must also produce a separate inventory for each of them.
Provide the security
The security is a guarantee that the tutor must provide when the value of the minor’s patrimony exceeds $40,000 or when ordered to do so by the court, at the request of an interested party. This will ensure that the minor’s patrimony is protected.
The amount and type of the security, and the deadline for providing it, are determined by the tutorship council. It must do so within the first six months following institution of the oversight of the legal or suppletive tutorship or institution of the dative tutorship. Otherwise, the Curateur public can do it.
Manage the finances and property of the minor
While you are the legal, dative or suppletive tutor to the property of the minor, you must ensure that you administer their patrimony properly and protect their interests. At all times, you must act with caution, diligence, honesty and loyalty. In other words, you must be transparent and act in good faith. You must, for example:
- establish a separate patrimony, by registering investments and bank accounts under the designation “as tutor” or “in the capacity of tutor,” hence the term “in the capacity of,” for example: “(your name) in the capacity of tutor to (minor’s name)”;
- establish the minor’s sources of income. You must also take the necessary steps to ensure they receive all government and other benefits or indemnities to which they are entitled;
- make presumed sound investments. Presumed sound investments are low-risk investments that protect the capital from significant loss in value. By making such investments, you are acting with caution, by protecting the minor’s finances against certain risks that could have a serious impact on the value of their patrimony. Note that personal loans are not presumed sound investments under the law;
- establish the minor’s budget based on their situation. As the dative or suppletive tutor, you have no obligation of support to the minor, unlike the legal tutors. Therefore, if the legal tutors are unable to meet their child’s needs or if they die (in the case of dative tutorship), you can use the minor’s patrimony to meet their needs: education, personal care, transportation, recreation, vacations, orthodontic fees, etc. You must then establish a budget to pay for their needs until they reach full age.
If they are the beneficiary of a trust or an heir to a succession, you will need to exercise the minor’s rights.
Exceptional use of the patrimony of a minor
Under a tutorship to the property of a minor, the tutors have an obligation to preserve the minor’s property so that it can be returned to them once they reach full age. However, in exceptional situations and under certain conditions, the tutors could be authorized to use the minor’s patrimony.
Any use of the minor’s property must be discussed with the tutorship council.
Ask the person in charge of the minor’s file at the Curateur public or consult the following guides for more information about the exceptional use of the patrimony of the minor:
Perform financial tracking
You must keep an accounting sheet if the minor’s patrimony needs to be used for expenses related to:
- the tutorship (all expenses directly related to the administration, protection and preservation of the minor’s patrimony);
- the minor’s needs, within the established budget, when the parents are deceased; or
- the minor’s health, education, or workplace integration, if the living parents’ do not earn enough to cover these expenses.
Using this type of file will make it easier to track expenses incurred and income received on behalf of the minor.
It can be electronic or handwritten and must include one section for income and another for expenses. Keeping this sheet up to date will allow you to report more easily on your administration at the end of each year.
Produce administration reports
As the legal, dative, or suppletive tutor to the property of a minor, you are required to produce an annual rendering of accounts on your administration to:
- the tutorship council;
- the Curateur public;
- the minor age 14 years and over;
- the tutor to the person (if not you).
The rendering of accounts is a report on your administration and a justification of all expenses incurred and actions taken on behalf of the minor.
You must also produce a final administration report at the end of your term as tutor to the property and submit it to:
- the minor upon reaching full age or being fully emancipated;
- the liquidator of the succession (in the event of the minor’s death);
- your replacement (where applicable);
- the tutorship council; and
- the Curateur public.
You can find more information about your obligations as tutor or tutorship council in the following documents:
- Administering the property of a minor - Guide for the legal tutor and the tutorship council (PDF 2.66 Mb)
- Administering the property of a minor - Guide for the dative tutor and the tutorship council (for dative and suppletive tutors) (PDF 2.65 Mb)
The Curateur public also provides tools and forms to help you with your administration reports.
Contact the general information service of the Curateur public
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: from 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon and from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday: from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon and from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
General mailing address (Head office and territorial branches)
Curateur public du Québec
500, rue Sherbrooke Ouest, bureau 1832
Montréal (Québec) H3A 0J2
Last update: July 27, 2023