When the legislature decided in 1955 to proceed with the revision of the Civil Code, it confined itself to a brief statement of the general terms of reference within which the jurist appointed was to work. In so doing, it did not lay down the lines along which the revision was to be carried out and the direction the work was to take and, consequently, it did not indicate its scope. Was it a question of simply making quick and partial improvements where changes were most urgently needed? The contrary view was taken, in the belief that all the basic institutions of our civil law should undergo a collective and systematic rethinking.

The new Civil Code had to reflect the social, moral and economic realities of today's Quebec; it had to be a body of law that was alive and contemporary, and which would be responsive to the concerns, attentive to the needs and in harmony with the requirements of a changing society in search of a new equilibrium.

In short, the Civil Code had to be made to reflect the society of Quebec in the latter part of the twentieth century.