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Clarification of COVID-19 legislation (FOI)

Clarification of COVID-19 legislation (FOI)

Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by Government of Jersey and published on 20 April 2020.
Prepared internally, no external costs.


Under to FOI law I would like to request the following:

Under COVID-19 (restricted movement) (Jersey) order 2020 I request clarification on the following:


Why is it the public at large say it’s a 30 day lockdown when in fact (at this time) it is a two week lockdown? Is this a lack of communication from the Government?


Will the states (government) define the word “otherwise”


Is there a difference between the words “order” and “law” what’s is the Government definition of this?



The Order initially covered the period 30 March to 13 April 2020 but this was extended to 27 April 2020.

See the following link to the legislation:

Covid-19 (Restricted Movement) (Amendment - extension) (Jersey) Order 2020

The Order was initially only for 14 days, because the Covid-19 (Screening, Assessment and Isolation) (Jersey) Regulations 2020 specify that an Order can only be for up to 14 days, although the Regulations do not limit the number of Orders that can be made.

See the following link to the legislation: 

Covid-19 (Screening, Assessment and Isolation) (Jersey) Regulations 2020

The 14-day limit is an intentional safeguard. The law sets out that the Minister for Health and Social Services must:

a. consult the Medical Officer of Health before making an Order, and

b. only make that Order if satisfied that the risk to public health justifies the Minister doing so.


In this context the term ‘otherwise’ can be defined as other than for payment.


The word Law (with a capital ‘L’) refers to primary legislation. Regulations are another form of primary legislation. An Order is a form of subordinate legislation, which is commonly called secondary legislation as it come after the primary legislation.

The primary legislation (ie, the Law or the Regulations) may contain a power for the Minister to make an Order which may:

a. amend a primary Law / Regulations in some limited way, and / or

b. provide for the finer details of legislation.

With reference to response 'A' above the primary legislation is the Covid-19 (Screening, Assessment and Isolation) (Jersey) Regulations 2020. The Regulations sets out that:

a. the Minister has the power to prohibit people being in public places, and

b. that the Minister may make an Order (ie. secondary legislation) setting of the detail of when people are not allowed in public places.

The States Assembly must debate primary legislation (Laws and Regulations) but are not required to debate Orders. However the Order must be laid before the Assembly which may, if it votes to do so, annul the Order.

Please find below a link to the definitions of the relevant terms on the Jersey Law website:

Glossary of Legal Terminology

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