TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO.
relating to Solicitors of the Supreme
GEORGE R. LE HUNTE,
28th June, 1912.
B E it enacted by the Governor of Trinidad and Tobago
with the advice and consent of the Legislative Council
thereof as follows :-
1. This Ordinance may be cited as :the Solicitors' Short Title.
2. In this Ordinance the term Interpre-
"Incorporated Law Society," means the society of
attorneys, solicitors, proctors and others not being barristers
practising in the Courts of law or equity in England.
Solicitor means a solicitor and conveyancer, admit-
ted and enrolled under this Ordinance or any Ordinance
repealed by this Ordinance or any other Ordinance, and,
subject to the provisions of this Ordinance, includes a per-
son admitted and enrolled as a Solicitor but not as a
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
Registrar means, in Trinidad, the Registrar of the
Supreme Court, and in Tobago, the Sub-Registrar.
"Preliminary Examination means an examination
in general knowledge of persons desirous of becoming articled
clerks on such subjects as may be prescribed by the Judges
of the Supreme Court and the Principals of the Royal College
and St. Mary's College.
Qualifying Examination means an examination of
the character referred to in Section 8 of this Ordinance.
Intermediate Examination means an examination
by the Incorporated Law Society of persons bound under
articles of clerkship to Solicitors in order to ascertain the
progress made by such persons during their articles in
acquiring the knowledge necessary for rendering them fit
and capable to act as Solicitors.
Final Examination means an examination by the
Incorporated Law Society of persons applying to be
admitted as solicitors as well touching the articles of
service as the fitness and capacity of such persons to act as
solicitors in all business and matters usually transacted by
The Court" means the Supreme Court of Trinidad
The Society" means the Incorporated Law Society
Committee" means a committee of the Council of
the Society appointed by the Society for the purposes of
Qualification 3.-(1.) Subject to the provisions hereinafter contained,
for admission, no person shall be entitled to be admitted and enrolled as a
solicitor who has not passed the qualifying, intermediate,
and final examinations, and has not served as an articled clerk
for five years, provided always that in the case of a clerk
whether articled before or after the commencement of this
Ordinance, who has taken one of the degrees mentioned in
Sub-sections (1)and (2) of Section 8,the period of service shall
be three years, and in the case of a clerk whether articled
beforeor afterthe commencement of this Ordinance, who has
passed ResponsionsExamination at the University of Oxford,
or the Previous Examination of the Universityof Cambridge,
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
or the Matriculation Examination of the University of London
having been placed in the first division thereof, or the
Oxford or Cambridge Senior Local Examination, having in
either case been placed in the first class in honours, the
period of service shall be four years.
(2.) The requirements of this section as to the passing
of the Intermediate Examination shall not apply to a clerk
who has been articled for a period of one year or longer at
the time of the commencement of this Ordinance.
4. Anypersonwho, either before or afterthe commencement Persons who
of this Ordinance, shall for the term of ten years have been a ten years as
bond fide clerk to a solicitor andconveyancerpractisinginthis Eination
Colony, and shall produce to the Court satisfactory evidence of.
that he has faithfully honestly and diligently served as such
clerk, and also after the expirationof the said term of ten years
has served as an articled clerk to a practising solicitor in
this Colony for the term of three years, shall be entitled
to be admitted and enrolled as a solicitor after having passed
the preliminary, intermediate and final examinations.
,.5. The Registrar shall keep in his office a book of record, Registrar to
which shall be called the "Solicitors' Roll." The name of prepare list.
every solicitor admitted shall be forthwith entered by the
Registrar in the said roll, together with the date of his
6. Every person duly admitted and for the time being Solicitors in
entitled to practise as a solicitor or Writer to the Signet in dm may
the United Kingdom shall, subject to the provisions of this be admitted.
Ordinance, be entitled on the direction of the Court to have his
name inscribed on the Solicitors' Roll together with the
date of his admission in this Colony, and thereafter such
person shall be entitled to practice in the several Courts of
this Colony as fully as any solicitor admitted to practise
in this Colony.
Provided that nothing in this section contained shall be
construed to compel the Court to admit any such person to
practise as a solicitor where any allegation is made to the
Court by the Registrar or any person whomsoever touch-
ing the honesty and integrity of the person claiming
admission or that his previous conduct as a solicitor has
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
If upon enquiry made into the truth thereof the Court
is satisfied that such allegations are true, it may refuse to
admit any such person to practise as a solicitor in this
Colony or may make such other order in the matter as it
may deem fit.
The provisions of this section shall not be deemed to
apply to persons admitted to practise in England under the
Colonial Solicitors Act, 1900 (63 and 64 Vie. cap. 14) or
any of the enactments repealed by it.
Entry in 7. On production to the Registrar by any person of such
Cre'Book evidence as may be required by the Registrar that he has
passed a qualifying examination or of a certificate that he
has passed the preliminary examination, and that he is above
the age of eighteen years, the Registrar shall, subject to any
rules made as to enquiries touching his fitness and character,
enter the name of such person, together with the date of the
passing of such examination, in a book to be kept in his
office and to be called the Articled Clerks Book, and such
book shall at all reasonable times be open for the inspec-
tion of the public without fee.
Qualify ng 8. The following persons shall be deemed to have passed
examination the qualifying examination, that is to say, persons:-
(1.) Who have taken the degree of Bachelor of Arts or
Bachelor of Laws inany of the Universities of England, Wales
or Ireland, or the degree of Master of Arts, Bachelor of Laws
or Doctor of Laws in any of the Universities of Scotland; or
(2.) Who have been called to the Bar in England or
Ireland, or been admitted as Advocates in Scotland; or
(3.) Who have passed the First Public Examination
before Moderators at Oxford or the Previous Examination at
(4.) Who have passed one of the local examinations for
Seniors established by the Universities of Oxford or
Cambridge, satisfying the Examiners in English Language
and Literature, History, Geography, and one other language
besides English, or the examination for higher certificates
of the Oxford and Cambridge Schools Examination Board; or
(5.) Who have passed the examination for the first
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
class certificate of the College of Preceptors Incorporated
by Royal Charter in the year 1849; or
(6.) Who have passed the Matriculation Examination
of any of the Universities of London, Liverpool, Manches-
ter, Leeds, Sheffield, Birmingham, Bristol or Wales; or of
the Royal University of Ireland, Queen's College, Belfast
or Queen's University, Belfast; or
(7.) Who have passed an examination which entitles
them to enter the Home Civil Service'in the United King-
dom, or the Indian Civil Service, or the Consular Service,
or the Service of the Crown in the East as Cadets.
9. Every person whose name is entered by the Registrar Whomay
in the Articled Clerks' Book shall be entitled to enter into artices o
articles of clerkship to any practising solicitor in accordance clerkship.
with the provisions of this Ordinance, and no other person
shall be so entitled.
10. The Court may from time to time approve a form of orm of
articles of clerkship, and such form when so approved shall a1'l
be lodged in the Registrar's office and shall in all cases be
used by solicitors when taking persons to serve as their
11. When any person has become duly bound under Articles tobe
shewn to and
articles of clerkship to a solicitor he shall forthwith exhibit entered by
the said articles or -cause them to be exhibited to theRegistrar.
Registrar, who shall thereupon enter in the Articled Clerks'
Book against the name of such person the date when such
articles were exhibited and the name of the solicitor to
whom such person became bound; and the period of such
person's service under articles of clerkship shall be deemed
to commence at the date of such entry being made. The
Registrar shall also mark such articles as having been
so exhibited and entered together with the date thereof.
12. Any articled clerk may complete his period of service Service under
under one or more solicitors, provided that on ceasing to olicitors.
serve with any solicitor to whom he was bound in articles
and becoming bound to another solicitor he shall in every
case execute fresh articles of clerkship and shall exhibit the
same to the Registrar, who shall thereupon make an entry
No. :29. Solicitors. 1912.
in the Articled Clerks' Book in manner hereinbefore provided,
and shall also mark the articles in the manner hereinbefore
mentioned. Provided that before such entry shall be made
such articled clerk shall satisfy the Registrar as to the date
when his service ceased under his former articles; and the
Registrar shall make an entry of such date against the
entry respecting the former articles.
nAti e cle grk 13. Every articled clerk shall during his term of service
in any other under articles continue with and be actually employed by
employment. the solicitor to whom he is bound in the proper business,
practice or employment of a solicitor, and shall not hold
any office or engage in any employment whatsoever other
than the employment of clerk to such solicitor or his partner
or partners (if any) in the business and practice of a solicitor.
Casnsen iono 14. If any solicitor to whom any person may be an
articles on articled clerk shall before the expiration of the term of
solicitory service of such articled clerk become bankrupt, the Court
may, upon his application, order his contract of service with
such solicitor to be cancelled or assigned to such other
solicitor upon such terms and in such manner as the said
Court shall think fit.
Cancellationor 15. If any solicitor to whom any person may be articled
articles in shall die before the expiration of the term of service of such
oerai other articled clerk or shall discontinue practice as a solicitor, or
if the articles shall by mutual consent or otherwise be can-
celled, or in case such articled clerk shall be discharged
before the expiration of his term of service by order of the
Court, such clerk may in every such case be bound afresh
to any other solicitor during the residue of the said term;
and service under such last mentioned binding shall be
deemed to be good and effectual.
Admission and status of Solicitors.
Admission of 16.-(1.) On production by an articled clerk of a certificate
clerks as of the Incorporated Law Society that he has passed the
Solicitors. intermediate and final examinations, and of a certificate of
the Committee that he is a fit and proper person as regards
honesty, integrity and financial status to be admitted a
No. 29. Solicitors. 191'.
solicitor, he shall, subject to the provisions hereinafter con-
tained, be entitled to be admitted and enrolled as a solicitor.
(2.) In the event of the Committee refusing to grant
such certificate to an articled clerk, he may within 3
months after such refusal appeal by petition in writing
against such refusal to the Full Court.
17. Every person entitled under the provisions of this Requirements
Ordinance to be admitted and enrolled as a solicitor shall, for nrolme
before he shall be so admitted and enrolled, prove by the
written declaration of himself and the solicitor or solicitors
under whom he has served, to be duly made and filed with
the Registrar, that he has actually and really served and
been employed by such solicitor or solicitors during the
whole term and in the manner required by this Ordinance.
18. Before any person is admitted to practise as a solicitor Court to admit
the Registrar shall enquire whether such person has complied solictor.
with the provisions of this Ordinance, and if he shall be
satisfied that such person has so complied and if there be no
charge touching the honesty, integrity or financial status or
touching the professional conduct of such person, he shajl
report accordingly to the Court, who shall then, but not
otherwise, administer or cause to be administered to such
person the oath or affirmation hereinafter directed to be
taken or made by solicitors in addition to the oath of
allegiance, and after the taking of such oaths or affirmations
shall cause him to be admitted as a solicitor and his name
to be enrolled in the Solicitors' Roll.
The form of admission and enrollment shall be prepared
by the Registrar and signed by the Judges.
19. Before any person is admitted to practise as a solicitor Certificate of
he shall produce to the Court a certificate under the Seal of pctiset
the Court signed by the Registrar, and the Court shall then
but not otherwise administer to such person the oath or
affirmation directed to be taken or made by solicitors, and
after the taking of such oath or affirmation shall cause him
to be admitted as a solicitor and his name to be enrolled in
the Solicitors' Roll,
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
Oath. 20. Every person on being admitted and enrolled as a
solicitor shall take the following oath or affirmation:
I, A.B., do swear (or solemnly a'firm as the case may be) that I will truly and
honestly demean myself in the practice of a solicitor according to the best of my
knowledge and ability: So help me God.
Admission of 21. Whenever any person who under the provisions of
conveyancer any Ordinance formerly in operation in this Colony has
been duly admitted and enrolled as a Solicitor in this
Colony but is not entitled to practise as a Conveyancer,
shall be desirous of practising as a Conveyancer, it shall be
competent for him to apply by petition to the Full Court,
and if such Court shall, after due examination and inquiry
into the learning capacity and fitness of such person,
be satisfied that such person is duly qualified and
fit and competent to practise as a Conveyancer, then
and in such case, the said Court shall admit such
Solicitor to practise as a Conveyancer, and to draw and
attest all deeds as such, and shall grant unto him a certifi-
cate thereof under the seal of the Court, in such form as to
the said Court shall seem proper, and thereupon such
Solicitor shall be and be deemed and taken to be a Certificated
charges 22.-(1.) If any charge touching his honesty integrity or
soliitor or financial status or touching his professional conduct shall
clerks. be made against any solicitor or articled clerk by the Regis-
trar or any other person, the Chief Justice shall appoint a
Committee of not less than three and not more than five of
the members of the Council of the Society to enquire into
(2.) The Chief Justice may from time to time remove
any member from such Committee, or fill any vacancy in it,
or add to its number, provided that the number shall not
exceed five or be less than three.
(3.) Three members of such Committee shall form a
(4.) Such Committee after hearing the charge shall
embody their findings in the form of a report to the Court,
which may make such order thereon as to it may appear
iust and proper.
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912,
(5.) No such charge shall be withdrawn or settled
without leave of such Committee.
23. The Committee shall have power in respect of any Committee
investigation or enquiry committed to them under the minister
provisions of this Ordinance and of rules made hereunder oaths.
to administer oaths to or to take the affirmation of all parties
or witnesses appearing or summoned before them touching
any such matter; and any person giving false evidence on
oath or affirmation before the Committee shall be guilty of
perjury in the same manner in all respects as if such oath
or affirmation had been taken and such evidence given before
a Judge of the Supreme Court on the trial of an action.
24. No Solicitor shall be entitled to have an articled Numberof
clerk unless such Solicitor shall have been admitted and slowed.
enrolled as a solicitor for not less than 5 years, and no
solicitor shall have more than one articled clerk at one and
the same time; and no solicitor shall after he shall have
discontinued practising as or carrying on the business of a
solicitor, nor whilst he shall be employed or retained as a
writer or clerk by any other solicitor, take have or retain any
articled clerk; and service under articles to a solicitor in
such case shall not be deemed good service for the purposes
of this Ordinance.
Provided that nothing in this section contained shall
affect the rights of any clerks articled before the commence-
ment of this Ordinance.
25.-(1.) No solicitor shall in any year practise without ob- Annual
training from the Registrar an annual license authorizing him plitiee
to practise as such. Each such license shall remain in
force till the 31st December following the date of its issue
(2.) The Registrar shall enter the particulars of every
such license in a book to be kept for that purpose.
(3.) The Registrar shall cause to be published in the
Royal Gazette within seven days of the date of such
licenses the names and places of business of the solicitors
who obtain licenses, which shall nevertheless take effect
9n the day on which they are dated,
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
(4.) A copy of the Royal Gazette containing the names
of Solicitors who have obtained licenses, shall until the
contrary be made to appear, be evidence in all the Courts
of this Colony that the persons named therein as Solicitors
holding such licenses are entitled to practise in such
capacity for the current year.
(5.) In the case of a Solicitor who is not entitled to
practise as a Conveyancer, such fact shall appear in the
license in Sub-section (1) hereof referred to, and shall be stated
when the matters referred to in Sub-section (3) hereof are
published in the Royal Gazette, and notwithstanding any-
thing hereinbefore contained no such person shall be
entitled to practise as a Conveyancer.
Renewal of 26. It shall be lawful for the Registrar to refuse to issue
rnciscargd or renew the license of a Solicitor who is an undischarged
bankrupt. bankrupt, subject to an appeal to the Full Court by petition
Practising 27. Any person practising as a solicitor without being
iene.t duly licensed in that behalf shall be deemed guilty of an
offence against this Ordinance, and shall on conviction
thereof before a Stipendiary Justice of the Peace be fined any
sum not exceeding twenty Pounds, to be recovered from the
goods and chattels of such person by warrant of distress, and
in default of sufficient distress by imprisonment for any
term not exceeding one month.
Solicitor not 28. It shall not be lawful for any solicitor whilst under
to act during
imprisonment. sentence of imprisonment in any gaol or prison, to sue out
any writ or process, or commence or prosecute or defend any
action in any Court of law in this Colony. Any solicitor
who shall contravene the provisions of this section shall be
deemed guilty of a contempt of the Court in which any such
action shall have been commenced, prosecuted or defended,
and shall be liable upon the application of any person to be
punished accordingly, and such solicitor shall not be entitled
to recover any fee, reward or disbursement for or in respect
of any business or thing done by him in his own name or in
the name of any other solicitor whilst so imprisoned.
asein which 29. If any solicitor shall commit any act whereby
solicitor may t t l o ir tim i
be disenroleld, according to the law or practice in England for the time being
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
such solicitor would render himself liable to be struck off the
roll, or if any solicitor shall wilfully and knowingly act as
agent in any action in any Court of law for any person not
duly qualified to act as a solicitor as aforesaid, or permit or
suffer his name to be in any way made use of in any such
action or matter upon the account or for the profit of any
unqualified person, or send any process to such unqualified
person, or knowing any person to be unqualified shall commit
any act whereby such unqualified person is enabled to act
as a solicitor, such person shall be guilty of an offence
against this Ordinance and shall be liable to be punished in
manner next hereinafter provided.
Upon complaint made to the Court in the manner
prescribed by rules to be made hereunder and upon proof
to the satisfaction of the Court that any solicitor has
wilfully and knowingly offended therein as aforesaid, such
solicitor may be struck off the roll and disabled from
practising as a solicitor, or the Court may in lieu thereof
commit such solicitor to the Royal Gaol for any term not
exceeding one year.
30. No solicitor shall so long as he shall be engaged and Nosoolicior to
be a Justice of
continue in the business and practice of a solicitor be the Peace.
qualified or capable of holding the appointment of a Justice
of the Peace: Provided that such disability shall not for
the time being extend to any solicitor who may hold the
office of Mayor of any borough in this Colony, and who by
virtue of his office of Mayor shall or may be ex officio a
Justice of the Peace.
31. Subject to the express provisions of this Ordinance, Jurisdiction of
all such jurisdiction and powers over solicitors as at the solicitors
commencement of this Ordinance are vested in the High
Court of Justice in England shall from and after such
commencement be vested in the Supreme Court, and there
shall also be vested in the Supreme Court the same
disciplinary powers over solicitors as are vested in and
exercised by the Incorporated Law Society.
32. No person shall be disqualified from being examined Articled clerk
not affected by
or admitted or enrolled as a solicitor or liable to be struck disquaifia-
off the rolls if admitted, by reason or in consequence of the oior.
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
solicitor to whom he may have been articled having been
during the continuance of such articles struck off the rolls.
Unathori ed 33. Every person who acts as a solicitor without being
a solicitor. duly admitted and enrolled according to the provisions of
this Ordinance or of any Ordinance repealed by this Ordinance
or any other Ordinance shall be guilty of an offence
against this Ordinance, and on conviction before any
Stipendiary Justice of the Peace shall be fined any sum
not exceeding Fifty Pounds, and in default of payment
shall be imprisoned with or without hard labour for any
term not exceeding six months.
Barristers in 34. Every Barrister-at-law duly admitted to practise in
Tfatise this Colony if resident and actually practising in Tobago, but
solicitors not otherwise, may without passing any examination under
this Ordinance, be admitted by the Court to practise as a
solicitor in Tobago.
Provided that every Barrister so admitted shall while
he continues to act as a solicitor, enjoy the same privileges
and immunities and be subject to the same liabilities as a
solicitor under this Ordinance.
Provided also that such admission to practise as a
solicitor may at any time be cancelled by the Court.
No Barrister admitted to practise as a solicitor and
appearing as such in any action or proceeding shall be
entitled to claim any fees as Barrister in such action or
Taxing of 35. All costs and fees recoverable by or payable to solicitors
$onto. shall, subject to statutory provisions, be taxed in the same
manner as costs are taxed in His Majesty's High Court of
Justice in England either as between party and party or
between solicitor and client as the case may be.
"Statutory provision" for the purposes of this Ordinance
means any provision contained in the Judicature Ordinance,
or in any rules of Court made pursuant to that Ordinance or
this Ordinance and approved by the Governor and Legis-
lative Council and not disallowed by His Majesty; and also
includes any provision contained in any future Ordinance
altering the constitution of the Supreme Court or providing
for the better administration of justice,
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
36. The Chief Justice with the concurrence of a Puisne Rules.
Judge may from time to time make rules for carrying this
Ordinance into effect, and in particular for all or any of the
(1.) With respect to enquiries touching the character
and fitness of persons who seek to become articled clerks, and
with respect to thepreliminary examinations of such persons,
(2.) With respect to the intermediate and final examina-
tions of Articled Clerks by the Incorporated Law Society.
(3.) With respect to the times, places and notices of
the preliminary, intermediate and final examinations, and
to the postponement of the final examination in cases where
an articled clerk fails to pass the intermediate examination
within a time or times prescribed by rules, and to the fees
payable by candidates.
(4.) Generally for regulating any matters relating to
such examinations as to which it may be deemed expedient
to make rules.
(5.) With respect to the fees to be paid to the Society
for Certificates delivered by the Committee under this
Ordinance or Rules made thereunder.
(6.) For regulating the mode of enrolment and admis-
sion of solicitors and the practice and procedure in matters
involving enquiry touching the honesty and integrity and
financial status of persons seeking to be admitted as solici-
tors or the grant or refusal of certificates of character by the
Committee, or touching the honesty and integrity or the
professional conduct of solicitors, and for enforcing atten-
dance of witnesses at any such enquiry and taxation and
payment of the costs of holding any such enquiry.
(7.) Generally for regulating all other matters relating
to the duties of solicitors as officers of the Court, including
the taxation and enforcement of costs as between solicitor
and client, and applications and appeals to the Court.
No. 29. Solicitors. 1912.
Repeal. 37. The Solicitors Ordinance (No. 105) arid the Solicitors
Ordinance, 1906, are hereby repealed.
Commence- 38. This Ordinance shall commence and come into
meant. operation on a day to be proclaimed by the Governor.
Passed in Council this Seventeenth day of June, in
the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and twelve.
HARRY L. KNAGGS,
Clerk of Council.