Bar Council of the Turks and Caicos Islands
Bar Council of the Turks and Caicos Islands
The Constitution of the

Turks and Caicos Islands

The Turks and Caicos Islands Constitution Order 2011 (“the Constitution Order”) was made by Her Majesty the Queen pursuant to Sections 5 and 7 of the West Indies Act 1962 on 13th of July 2011. Schedule 2 of the Constitution Order is the Constitution of the Turks and Caicos Islands.

The Bar Council, as an independent statutory body, is committed to upholding the Constitution of the Turks and Caicos Islands and the administration of justice in the Islands. In particular, the Bar Council is committed to the Fundamental Rights and Freedoms of the Individual (Part 1 of the Constitution):

“Whereas every person in the Islands is entitled to the fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual, that is to say, the right, without distinction of any kind, such as race, national or social origin, political or other opinion, colour, religion, language, creed, association with a national minority, property, sex, sexual orientation, birth or other status, but subject to respect for the rights and freedoms of others and for the public interest, to each and all of the following, namely:

  • life, liberty, security of the person and protection of the law;
  • freedom of conscience, of expression and of assembly and association; and
  • protection for his or her private and family life, the privacy of his or her home and other property and from deprivation of property save in the public interest and on payment of fair compensation,

the subsequent provisions of this Part shall have effect for the purpose of affording protection to the aforesaid rights and freedoms, and related rights and freedoms, subject to limitations of that protection as are contained in those provisions, being limitations designed to ensure that the enjoyment of the said protected rights and freedoms by any individual does not prejudice the rights and freedoms of others or the public interest.”

Those fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual are:

  • Protection of right to life
  • Protection from inhuman treatment
  • Protection from slavery and forced labour
  • Protection from arbitrary arrest or detention
  • Provisions to secure protection of law
  • Equality before the law
  • Protection of right of prisoners to humane treatment
  • Protection for family life and for privacy of home and other property
  • Protection of right to marry and found a family
  • Protection of freedom of conscience
  • Protection of right to education
  • Protection of freedom of expression
  • Protection of freedom of assembly and association
  • Protection of freedom of movement
  • Protection from discrimination
  • Peaceful enjoyment of property and protection from deprivation of property
  • Protection of the environment
  • Lawful administrative action by Government

A copy of the Constitution of the Turks and Caicos Islands may be downloaded here:

Legislation of the

Turks and Caicos Islands

As a British Overseas Territory, some Acts of Parliament of the United Kingdom apply to the Turks and Caicos Islands, including:

Judicial Committee Act 1833

Cayman Islands and Turks and Caicos Islands Act 1958

West Indies Act 1962

British Nationality Act 1981

British Overseas Territories Act 2002

Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018

Many Orders in Council of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom and Statutory Instruments of Parliament of the United Kingdom also apply in the Turks and Caicos Islands, such as the Caribbean Territories (Criminal Law) Order 2000. 

Legislation of the United Kingdom can generally be found here: www.legislation.gov.uk

Turks and Caicos legislation (called Ordinances) is passed by the House of Assembly, a unicameral legislative assembly created by Section 42 of the Constitution of the Turks and Caicos Islands. Subject to the Constitution, the legislature may make laws for the peace, order and good government of the Islands (s. 62 of the Constitution). In practice, this amounts to competence in various legislative areas excluding defence, external affairs, the regulation of international financial services, internal security including the Police Force, and the appointment of any person to any public office which are the special responsibilities of H. E. the Governor (s. 37(1) of the Constitution) which responsibilities may be assigned to a member of the Cabinet. There are 15 elected members of the House of Assembly, 4 members appointed by H.E. the Governor, a Speaker chosen from the members, and the Attorney General. Ordinances are given the Governor’s Assent in Her Majesty The Queen’s name or Her Majesty has given Her assent to it through a Secretary of State and the Governor has signified Her assent by proclamation published in the Turks and Caicos Islands Gazette. H.E. the Governor is required to dissolve the House of Assembly at the expiration of four years from the date when the House first meets after any general election, unless it has been sooner dissolved (s. 57(3) of the Constitution). The website of the House of Assembly can be found here: https://gov.tc/hoa/

Ordinances of the Turks and Caicos Islands are generally reproduced by a Revised Edition of the Laws of the Turks and Caicos Islands from time to time pursuant to the Revised Edition of the Laws Ordinance CAP 1.02 by the Law Revision Commissioner, who is currently the Attorney General of the Turks and Caicos Islands, Hon. Rhondalee Braithwaite-Knowles OBE. The most recent Revised Edition was published by the Law Revision Commissioner showing the laws as at 31st December 2014.

The 2014 Revised Edition of the Laws of the Turks and Caicos Islands can be found here: www.gov.tc/agc/laws/revised-laws-2014