Handling someone else's affairs without commission


In everyday life, there are situations in which it is necessary to look after the interests of other people. Sometimes conducting someone else's affairs requires immediate action, even in the absence of proper authorization. This procedure has been regulated in the Civil Code (hereinafter: the Civil Code) in the third book, in title XXII, conducting someone else's affairs without commission (Articles 752-757 of the Civil Code).

Characteristics of the institution

Pursuant to the regulations in force, a person who conducts someone else's case without commission (the so-called negotiorium gestor) should act for the benefit of the person (dominus negotii) whose case he conducts and according to that person's likely will, and is obliged to exercise due diligence at the same time.

Conducting someone else's affairs should be understood quite broadly, i.e. both as actual actions and performing legal actions, e.g. concluding contracts.

On the other hand, the premise of the lack of an order means that the person acts for or on behalf of another person, despite the lack of such an obligation, without a power of attorney, and with deliberate exceeding the scope of his authorization.

The discussed institution aims to reconcile two attitudes: the norm that no entity should interfere in the sphere of someone else's interests without the prior consent of the interested party and a generous attitude towards people who, for altruistic reasons, care for the interests of others.

It should be emphasized that the Civil Code requires that the person whose case is pursued receives an advantage. This, in turn, must be measurable and realistically achieved. So what matters is not so much the intention or anticipation as the result of the action itself.

"Art. 752 of the Civil Code does not create grounds for treating benefits only in the category of profit, but orders to consider the situation of the replaced person from the point of view of the broadly understood interest expressed not only in terms of property "(Judgment of the Supreme Court - Civil Chamber of March 17, 2004, file ref. . file II CK 71/2003).

Notification of the person concerned

A person who undertakes the conduct of someone else's affairs without a mandate should first notify the person who is interested in taking action. Depending on the circumstances, an entity without authorization should lead the case until the person for whom it acts can take action itself. The second option is to stop activities and wait for a command from the "replaced" person.

Submission of the invoice

The next step is to submit the invoice (list) and to issue everything that the person conducting the case obtained while conducting the case.

In practice, such an account should be divided into:

  1. a descriptive part about the activities performed and
  2. the financial part (benefits, expenses, outlays).

It is worth attaching all documents to the invoice, e.g. contracts, bills, invoices, receipts that will make the inventory more credible.

The presentation of the invoice should be made without undue delay after the completion of someone else's case. Earlier filing is possible when the person concerned expresses his objection to the further handling of the case.

Return of expenses

The case handler, who has acted in accordance with his / her obligations, may request reimbursement of reasonable expenses and expenditure together with statutory interest, and exemption from obligations incurred while conducting the case.

The request for a refund may only refer to legitimate expenses, i.e. those that were ultimately intended to be used in the proper performance of activities.

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Liability for damage

Pursuant to Art.754 of the Civil Code: "who conducts someone else's case against the will of the person whose interests he or she is aware of, may not demand reimbursement of expenses incurred and is liable for the damage, unless the will of that person is contrary to the act or the rules of social coexistence".

In turn, when the person conducting the case changes the property of the person whose case is conducted, without a clear need or benefit of that person or against the person's will, he or she is obliged to restore the previous state, and if it was not possible, he must repair the damage.

In practice, the outlays can be taken back, unless doing so will damage the property.

Changes to the property made by the operator must be justified by a clear need and are admissible, provided that they can be justified by a clear benefit of the person concerned.

Moreover, from the judgment of the Supreme Court of July 11, 1968, file ref. Act II CR 266/68 we can find out: “(...) By making changes to someone else's property, even objectively favorable, but not corresponding to the reasonable assessment of the owner, negotiorum gestor takes the risk that no one will reimburse his expenses.

Confirmation of case management

When the person whose case is conducted confirms (accepts) the activities carried out, then pursuant to Art. 756 of the Civil Code the regime provided for the contract of mandate is given to the cases conducted.

It should be remembered that the confirmation is optional and depends on the will of the person whose case is conducted. In turn, the case handler cannot enforce such acceptance.

In practice, if the conduct of someone else's affairs takes the form of an order, the person conducting it is entitled to remuneration corresponding to a part of the work performed. There is a common view in the doctrine that the person issuing the confirmation may exclude the issue of remuneration in his confirmation.