The vote to leave the EU has naturally sparked a good deal of uncertainty.
Here we summarise, in short, what could happen next if the UK government triggers the withdrawal procedure.
This article from the European Parliament explains the process of withdrawal in detail.
- The UK government will decide when to notify the EU that it intends to leave the EU.
- Once the UK government has notified the EU there is then a 2 year period to negotiate a Withdrawal Agreement from the EU. This 2 year period can be extended by agreement between the UK and EU.
- When the Withdrawal Agreement comes into force:
– All UK laws which have brought into effect EU laws, eg our regulations implementing EU directives for worker’s rights, will continue to be law until they are amended or repealed by the UK government. It will take time to analyse these laws and decide and agree if there will be any changes.
– The EU treaties (and Protocols) i.e the treaties which set up the EU constitution and establish the various EU institutions, e.g The European Court of Justice, the European Commission, The European Central Bank, will no longer apply to the UK, and will have to be replaced by new national laws and/or new negotiated treaties.
It is likely that any Withdrawal Agreement would set out the transition phase while EU laws apply, until they are replaced.
Vote Leave published on 15 June 2016 its “Framework for taking back control and establishing a new UK-EU deal after 23 June”.
In broad terms, the framework suggests the partial repeal of the European Communities Act 1972 in this parliament with the aim of “immediately end[ing] the … European Court of Justice’s control over national security, allow[ing] the Government to remove EU citizens whose presence is not conducive to the public good (including terrorists and serious criminals), end the … use of the EU’s Charter of Fundamental Rights to overrule UK law, and end payouts under EU law to big businesses.”
This may be a quicker way to repeal certain EU laws rather than using the full Article 50 process.
In the coming weeks the process for the new UK-EU relationship and the Withdrawal Agreement under article 50 will become clearer.
Article 50 in a snapshot
For more information or queries about issues discussed in this article, please contact Richard Mullett by email. To speak directly with Richard or any other of The Legal Partners team of specialist business and HR lawyers based at our Richmond UK office, or our partner lawyers in Singapore or Guanzhou, please call +44 203 755 5288
This article explains the main legal issues and common situations to consider. It is not a substitute for legal advice. Please get in contact to discuss your particular issue or queries.