Guernsey Legal Resources
Search site

Ordinances

headerimg

Guernsey Ordinances are passed by the States of Deliberation of Guernsey and do not require the approval of the Queen in Council; unless there is some provision to the contrary they come into effect once they have been approved by the States.

Ordinances passed by the States of Deliberation are of two categories - they are made either under the authority of an enabling Law or under inherent customary powers. This latter inherent power was transferred under the Reform (Guernsey) Law, 1948 from the Royal Court of Guernsey to the States.

Many Laws give the States of Deliberation powers to pass Ordinances. For example the Social Insurance Laws give the States of Deliberation power to set the rates of contribution and benefit by Ordinance.  These Ordinances can properly be described as "subordinate" legislation whereas the Ordinances made under inherent customary powers are effectively "primary" legislation (in so far as they are not enacted under any statutory enabling provision). Both categories of Ordinance however have precisely the same status and effect.

Examples of Ordinances which have been enacted under inherent powers without any enabling Law are those relating to liquor licensing, fishing, regulation of the Bar and most matters concerning public highways and road traffic.

Alderney Ordinances are passed by the States of Alderney and Sark Ordinances by the Chief Pleas of Sark. 

In order to help users find the relevant content, the Ordinances have been split up into Guernsey & Bailiwick, Alderney and Sark, and each section can be accessed via the navigation bar on left hand side of the screen.  Each section contains an A-Z listing containing subject categories.

With effect from the 1st May, 2016, the functions of Departments of the States of Guernsey, and of the relevant Ministers and Deputy Ministers of those Departments, transferred to a new committee structure, as detailed in Schedule 1 to the Organisation of States' Affairs (Transfer of Functions) Ordinance, 2016.  A number of the consolidated texts of Laws and Ordinances have been amended to reflect the transfers, but there are still many more to amend.  This task will be completed over the coming months and the amended consolidated texts with new committee names included will be posted to the site as soon as they are available.

To view a list of Ordinances published by the Office of H.M. Greffier since 1950 please click pdf icon Ordinances published since 1950 [1Mb].