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Brexit round-up – week commencing 7 Nov 2016

Matrix’s Legal Support Service provides a weekly round-up of Brexit-related news and links.

Brexit and the UK constitution

  1. In the response to the High Court ruling on art 50, the Government has been accused of failing to restrain the backlash against it and a Tory MP, Stephen Phillips, has resigned.
  2. There has been response to the art 50 ruling from different political parties. Nicola Sturgeon has announced that the Scottish Government will seek to oppose the UK Government in the legal battle over MPs’ right to vote on art 50 when it gets to the Supreme Court. Keir Starmer has stated that Labour will not block a parliamentary vote to trigger art 50, but will insist on knowing the Government’s plan. The Liberal Democrats (and some rebel Labour MPs) will vote against giving art 50 notice unless there is a referendum on the final deal.
  3. Government lawyers are reportedly exploring the possibility of arguing in the Supreme Court that the article 50 process could be reversed by parliament at any time before the UK completes its exit from the EU.
  4. Following the High Court art 50 judgment, the UK Constitutional Law Association has begun to consider the form that should be taken in the legislation which would need to be put before Parliament for discussion of exiting the EU.
  5. The date has been set for the Supreme Court appeal of the art 50 case for 5 Dec 2016.
  6. The House of Commons library has issued a research paper on some of the unknowns stemming from Brexit, whilst the Lords’ library has responded to the High Court judgment on art 50.

The UK’s post-Brexit deal with the EU

  1. Ministers have refused to say whether the Acquired Rights Directive 2001/23/EC, requiring companies bought out by other firms to safeguard the jobs of workers, would be incorporated into UK law following Brexit.
  2. The European Parliament is to consider a plan to let individual Brits opt-in to keep their EU citizenship and associated benefits after Brexit. This was tabled by Charles Goerens, MEP for the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats Group in the European Parliament.
  3. Theresa May has sought to build relations with India in preparation for stronger business and trade ties there post-Brexit; however commentators consider her offer to India to be poor.
  4. In the wake of Brexit and Donald Trump’s election, Luis González García has considered the future of international trade and has discussed the potential benefits to the UK of existing EU trade agreements post-Brexit.

Impact of Brexit on the economy

  1. The Parliamentary debate about the effect of Brexit on Financial Services has been published in Hansard.
  2. The European Commission’s Economic Forecast for 2017 shows UK GDP at just 1% due to the uncertainty of Brexit. This was shown in the Press Release. The Independent has also covered this.

Brexit as it affects Practice Areas:

Employment

The House of Commons has discussed the interaction between UK and EU employment law; the potential consequences of Brexit and the Government’s position on the issue.

Immigration

The first minister of Wales has stated that the UK will have to compromise with the EU over immigration to protect jobs. However Theresa May is adamant that there will be no backing down on Brexit immigration controls.

Human Rights, Equality and Discrimination

The Joint Committee on Human Rights has taken evidence on the potential impact on human rights of the UK’s proposed withdrawal from the EU from lawyers and academics.

Election law

The DPP is considering a complaint made to the CPS that voters were misled by the Vote Leave and Leave.EU campaigns, in contravention of electoral law, for example with the claim that the EU cost the UK £350m a week.