Elgar Encyclopedia of Comparative Law, Second Edition
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Elgar Encyclopedia of Comparative Law, Second Edition

Edited by Jan M. Smits

Written by leading authorities in their respective fields, the contributions in this accessible book cover and combine not only questions regarding the methodology of comparative law, but also specific areas of law (such as administrative law and criminal law) and specific topics (such as accident compensation and consideration). In addition, the Encyclopedia contains reports on a selected set of countries’ legal systems and, as a whole, presents an overview of the current state of affairs.
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Chapter 75: Turkey

Z. Derya Tarman


The legal framework in Turkey (officially known as the Turkish Republic – Türkiye Cumhuriyeti) has been shaped mainly by the reforms following the enactment of a secular constitution (the Constitution of 1924). The Sharia-based civil code of the Ottoman Empire (Mecelle) has been replaced by a secular civil code (Türk Kanunu Medenisi). The fundamental principles of the Turkish Civil Code are derived from the Swiss Civil Code of 1907 and Code of Obligations of 1911, both of which were adopted in 1926. In the same year, a new Criminal Code (Türk Ceza Kanunu) was adopted from the Italian Criminal Code of 1889. After remaining in force for 60 years, it was repealed in 2005 and replaced by a new Criminal Code which is heavily influenced by the German Penal Code and German doctrine. Codes of administrative law were mainly adopted from France. Procedural law shows the effect of Swiss, French and also German law. Meanwhile the Turkish Civil Code has been changed as of 1 January 2002. But the fundamental principles of the previous code have been retained. In 2011, the Commercial Code, Code of Obligations and the Code of Civil Procedure Law were amended, but the essence of these codes has been preserved. Thus, Turkey has followed the continental pattern and influence through the codification of many European laws.

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