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Are you prepared for Brexit?

After the vote to Leave the EU, we will now see negotiations over the next 2 years to secure Britain's future

As events unfold, we can now see a clearer picture of the legal implications of Brexit. With that in mind, there are things that businesses should start to consider and plan for. Thinking about the implications now can help your business to be in a better position when the UK does eventually leave the EU.

We're already having Brexit focused discussions with a number of our clients, with areas of interest including:

Agriculture & Rural 
Commercial Contracts
Data Protection
Health & Safety
HR & Employment 
Commercial Litigation 
Overseas Trade
Trademarks & Intellectual Property
VAT

If you’d like to speak to one of our team then please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Whilst there is an abundance of reading material on Brexit we recommend bookmarking the Commons Library and Lords Library website, where all their research material and assessment of the possible impact of Brexit on key policies is published.


 

High Court Delivers Brexit Bombshell

In a bombshell decision of fundamental constitutional importance, the High Court has ruled that the Government has no power to trigger the UK’s departure from the European Union without first referring the matter to Parliament.

Following the ‘leave’ result of the June 2016 referendum, the Government took the view that it was entitled to invoke its executive powers under the royal prerogative in order to give notice under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. That would have fired the starting gun on two years of negotiations leading up to the UK’s eventual departure.

However, in upholding campaigners’ challenge to that stance, the Court underlined the constitutional supremacy of Parliament and its ability to make, or unmake, any law as it chooses. The Government could not, by exercise of its prerogative powers, override legislation enacted by Parliament.

The Government argued that, by convention, it can employ its prerogative powers to make decisions relating to foreign policy, without reference to Parliament. However, the Court found that that convention did not apply as withdrawal from the EU would inevitably have the effect of changing domestic law.

The UK joined the then European Communities by the European Communities Act 1972. That primary legislation was required as it was a condition of membership that community law should be given effect in the domestic law of the UK. Withdrawal from the EU would thus necessarily have the effect of changing the latter.

The power to give notice under Article 50 was not conferred on the Government by the European Union Referendum Act 2015 or any other legislation. Any such notice given could also not be qualified by stating that Parliament is required to approve any withdrawal agreement reached during the course of the negotiations.




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