All about the medical certificate

What are the exact mentions to be included on the certificate? How long is it valid? Is a sports license sufficient for registration in a competition? It's not always easy to get the answers to all these questions when you're not a specialist. Dokeop decrypts all that for you and gives you a summary of what to remember.

Published on Friday 7 February 2020

All about medical certificate

First of all, what does the law say?

The article L231-2-1 of the French Sport Code requires the organiser of a sporting competition, the event of which gives rise to a classification, to collect and check the medical certificate or sports license of the participants when registering.

As you will have understood, event organizers do not ask for a medical certificate or a sports license just for their own enjoyment. This is a legal obligation for them, otherwise they would be liable in the event of an accident.

What exactly does the law say?

Sports disciplines and federations

It is important to specify that in France it is the Ministry of Sports that delegates to the federations the management of the sports disciplines, each of which is therefore in charge of an exclusive list of disciplines. Each federation then defines its own regulations according to his interpretation of the French Sport Code.

Consult the exhaustive list of delegate federations

Key points to remember

Period of validity of the medical certificate :
  • 1 year for participation in a competition
  • 3 years for getting a licence
Accepted mentions :
  • Sport in competition
  • Discipline concerned in competition
Language of the document :
  • In French language
  • In a foreign language with French translation

Medical certificate or license?

If the participant is a licence holder of the delegating federation supervising the competition in which he is registered, he can then present his valid sports license at the time of registration.

If a licence is not presented, the participant is required to present a medical certificate stating that there are no contraindications to the practice of the sport or discipline concerned in competition and less than one year old in relation to the date of the competition.

What about the period of validity of the medical certificate?

Is my medical certificate valid for 3 years or only 1 year? It is true that there is confusion among organizers and participants. since the entry into force on 1 July 2017 of the Medical Certificate attesting to the Absence of Contraindications to the practice of sport (CACI).

Simply put, a medical certificate is valid:

  • 3 years only in the case of obtaining a licence for a discipline without particular constraints, and provided that a health questionnaire is filled in at each renewal.
  • 1 year to take part in a competitive sports event or to obtain or renew of a license for a discipline with a particular constraint.
Cycling peloton
Running foots
Triathlon swimming

Which mention(s) to include?

With the entry into force of the CACI, the mention sport in competition is now enough for the practice of any what a discipline without any particular constraints. In the absence of this mention, the mention of the discipline concerned in competition will also work.

Attention however, the list of accepted mentions for a discipline is defined by each of the federations according to their regulations.

Also to be read...

The case of the FFA in detail

Which document for which sport?

Depending on the events for which it has a delegation, a sports federation defines its own list of accepted documents and sometimes there are many of them... In order to find your way around, use our search engine which will give you an exhaustive list of all the documents accepted for the sport concerned.

Medical certificate sample

The essential elements of a valid medical certificate

The medical certificate is an important document that attests to an athlete's ability to practice competitive sport. In the event of an accident (most often cardiovascular) occurring during a race, it is the first document that the organizer will ask for from the emergency services.

The medical certificate must be written by a practicing doctor at a physical appointment and given to the applicant in person. It must obligatorily:

  • Indicate the athlete's surname and first name clearly legible
  • Be less than one year old from the date of the competition
  • Wear the doctor's name, signature and stamp to easily identify and authenticate the doctor (most often using an RPPS number)
  • Include the words «Sport in competition» or «relevant discipline in competition»

Have you ever been tempted to produce a false medical certificate?

No time to go back to the doctor before your registration or just don't feel like paying for a consultation for a medical certificate? There are many reasons why some people produce false medical certificates, and the phenomenon doesn't seem to be getting any less common according to comments on social networks.

Be aware that it will be your sole responsibility which will be engaged in case of accident on a competition for which you would have submitted a falsified medical certificate, which means you won't be covered by any insurance.

In addition, you could be criminally prosecuted for forgery.

Good to know...

Legally, it is an offence to produce a false medical certificate: forgery and the use of forgeries. Article 441-1 of the Penal Code punishes this offence with a sentence of up to 3 years imprisonment and a fine of up to 45,000 euros.

If you use a false certificate, you are therefore liable to prosecution and heavy penalties.

So, still trying to fake your medical certificate?

Don't take any more risks and use our medical certificate generator. In just a few clicks you will get a model that is compliant and ready to be signed by your doctor.

Access the generator

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Document répondant aux exigences du Code du Sport et aux règlements des fédérations sportives.