The nature of the model's employment contract

The model's employment contract is not a permanent contract, nor a fixed-term contract, nor a temporary contract.

Contracts between agencies and models are not fixed-term contracts since the purpose of the model's contract is not included in the restrictive list of purposes allowing the use of fixed-term contracts (Article L.122.1.1- Parliamentary debates of 10 May and 5 June 1990).

Because of the very purpose of our activity and the specific regulations imposed on us, the model agency cannot be compared to a temporary employment agency. As a result, the employment legislation applicable to our activity is different from that applicable to temporary employment agencies.

This position was confirmed by the Cour de Cassation sociale (social court of cassation) on 7 December 1994:

"the profession of model does not belong to any sector of economic activity that allows the use of a fixed-term contract by nature"

as well as by the Cour de Cassation Sociale of 17 December 1997:

"In order to assess the temporary nature of employment under a contrat d’usage (contract for very short-term work), it is therefore appropriate to focus not on the particular job of the person concerned, but on the characteristics of the post. Since this position is related to the normal activity of the company, it cannot be the subject of a fixed-term contract, as it is not temporary in nature, regardless of the duration of the period of activity".

This position was supplemented by the Minister of Employment and Solidarity following the written question no. 06124 put by Senator Louis Souvet (Doubs - UMP), and published in the Sénat JO (Senate Official Journal) of 12/02/1998 - page 449. The answer of the Ministry of Employment was published in the JO Sénat of 10/09/1998 - page 2909. Here is an extract: 

"These specific provisions (of assignment contracts concluded with a model agency), which have been codified in Book VII, Title VI, Chapter III of the code du travail (French Employment Code) (Article L. 763-1 et seq.), cannot be confused with the provisions of Title I and Title II of Act No. 90-613 of 12 July 1990 relating respectively to fixed-term contracts and temporary employment contracts, which are codified in Book 1, Title II, Chapters II and IV of the code du travail (French Employment Code)"

Finally, the Ministerial Circular of 30 January 2008, confirms in III A b) in the characteristics of the contracts, that the contract is of a specific nature, and in III B b) in the nature of the contract that "the activity of model cannot be linked to any of the sectors referred to in Article D. 121-2 of the Labour Code (Cass. soc. 7 December 1994, no 90-41.887)."

Consequently, it is in perfect application of the legal provisions that the contracts binding the model to his/her agency are not fixed-term or temporary contracts but sui generis contracts with a foreseeable duration (Article R7123-19) in accordance with the provisions of Articles R 7123-1 et seq. of the code du travail (French Employment Code) and the provisions of the collective agreement applicable to our profession.