Latest Brexit Legal Developments

Brexit Impact on UK Businesses

Even though there is still a great deal of uncertainty surrounding the legal ramifications of the EU referendum result, there is a surge in demand for legal expertise and guidance on the implications of Brexit on the miriad of trade laws and legislation between the UK and the European Union.

Although nothing is likely to change for 2 years, businesses will need to plan ahead to ensure a smooth transition and avoid costly mistakes. Our lawyers can provide advice on the immediate risks and guidance on what your next steps should be.

The main areas that affect business include:

1. VAT Compliance
2. Trade Tariffs between EU and Non EU states
3. Employment Law
4. The Euopean Company 5. Intellectual property
5. Debt recovery
6. Property
7. Commercial Contracts
8. Currency Fluctuations & Economic downturn

For a free 30 minute consultation to consider how Brexit will affect your business, with one of our expert commercial lawyers in Manchester, please contact us on 0161 464 8033 or fill in our online enquiry form.

On 24.01.2017 the Supreme Court ruled that Parliament must give permission for Article 50 to be triggered.

A campaign led by Gina Miller, brought a legal action against the government, arguing that Article 50 could not be triggered by the government under the Royal Prerogative powers. The campaigners argued that triggering article 50 without consulting Parliament first would mean overturning existing UK laws, and therefore MP’s and Peers should decide whether Article 50 ought to be triggered.

By a majority of 8-3, the Supreme court decided in favour of the campaigners. Supreme Court President, Lord Neurenberger said: “Withdrawal effects a fundamental change by cutting off the source of EU law, as well as changing legal rights.

“The UK’s constitutional arrangements require such changes to be clearly authorised by Parliament.”

The court also rejected, unanimously, arguments that the Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly and Northern Ireland Assembly should get to vote on Article 50 before it is triggered.

Lord Neuberger said: “Relations with the EU are a matter for the UK government.”

In essence the court decided that the rights acquired by membership of the European Union can only be taken away by Parliament.

The only sure thing as the moment is that Post Brexit, the International Trade Sector will no longer remain the same. There is uncertainty around what legal framework will exist for international trade. This will largely depend on the Governments negotiation, however, the head of the EU has categorically warned that any deal agreed outside of EU membership must necessarily be less favourable than the benefits available to members inside the EU.

Trade within the EU

The UK’s trading relationship with the EU could be based on:

  • Norwegian Model – This is based on membership of the EEA (European Economic Area)
  • Switzerland Model – This is based on bilateral treaties with the EU to obtain access to the single market.
  • A bespoke free trade deal with the EU

Default Position

Unless and until a separate agreement is reached with the EU, the default position is that trade will take place under the terms of the WTO (World Trade Organisation).

UK import/export businesses need to identify the risks and plan ahead for the imminent changes.

In the meantime, the UK must comply with EU law until it actually leaves the EU. Nothing will change in respect of free movement of goods, people, services, capital.

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