Topics

Brexit

Susie MunroEditor's message: The situation as it currently stands is that the Brexit date has been postponed. The UK will leave the EU on 31 October 2019, or earlier if Parliament approves the withdrawal agreement before that date. It is also possible that, if no deal is reached by 31 October 2019, the UK and EU could agree a further extension to the Brexit date. If the withdrawal agreement is not ratified by 22 May 2019, the UK will be required to participate in EU elections.

One of the issues of particular interest to many organisations is the impact of Brexit on their European workforce in the UK. The UK Government and the EU negotiators have reached an agreement on citizens' rights, under which EU citizens who arrive in the UK by 31 December 2020, the end of the transition period, will be entitled to apply for "settled status" when they have five years' continuous residence in the UK. This will give them the right to stay indefinitely.

In the event of a "no-deal” Brexit, the Government's position is that the transition period for EU citizens in the UK would not apply, so only EU citizens who are resident in the UK by Brexit day would be eligible to apply under the settlement scheme. The position for UK citizens in the EU if there is no deal is less clear, as it depends on the approach of each individual country.

Under the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018, EU law will be converted into UK law when the UK leaves the EU. This means that current workers' rights under EU law, such as working time rights, will remain in effect after Brexit, but will become subject to Parliament's control over domestic law.

The Act also confirms that, from exit day, UK courts will no longer be bound by new decisions of the European Court of Justice, although decisions made before exit day will continue to be binding on UK courts. The final court of appeal will be the UK Supreme Court. The jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights is, however, unaffected by Brexit.

Susie Munro, senior employment law editor

New and updated

  • How to prepare for Brexit

    Type:
    How to

    Updated to reflect the increased likelihood of a no-deal Brexit and the importance of contingency workforce planning.

  • Banks need to transfer more staff to EU for no-deal Brexit

    Date:
    15 August 2019
    Type:
    News

    Banks need to "step up" their plans for the UK leaving the EU without a deal, the European Central Bank has warned, adding that more staff and resources should be moved in preparation.

  • Johnson's Brexit chief opposes workers' rights commitment

    Date:
    31 July 2019
    Type:
    News

    Boris Johnson's newly appointed chief negotiator for Brexit has criticised the idea of the European Union being allowed to "set new UK labour market rules without any UK say".

  • Business secretary: 'no-deal Brexit will cost thousands of jobs'

    Date:
    15 July 2019
    Type:
    News

    Business secretary Greg Clark has warned that 'many thousands' of jobs will be lost if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

  • Post-Brexit regional skills funding under threat

    Date:
    8 July 2019
    Type:
    News

    Regions of the UK are at risk of losing out on £2.1 billion of funding per year, which includes subsidies for job creation and skills training, if the government does not create alternative funding arrangements when the UK leaves the EU.

  • EU settled status: how employers can help their European staff

    Date:
    20 June 2019
    Type:
    Commentary and analysis

    Last week Personnel Today ran an opinion piece which criticised the EU Settlement Scheme, the process that EU, EEA or Swiss citizens need to follow to continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021. In response, immigration minister Caroline Nokes explains what the Home Office is doing to make the scheme run as smoothly as possible for individuals and employers.

  • EU settled status scheme looks far from settled

    Date:
    12 June 2019
    Type:
    Commentary and analysis

    The EU settled status scheme is facing an uncertain future after strong criticism by MPs, the uncertainty over the political leadership of the UK and Brexit policy. Immigration expert Chetal Patel finds that despite the instability, businesses are left with little choice but to plan on the basis that the scheme is here to stay.

  • Podcast: Latest updates on Brexit and what they mean for employers

    Date:
    11 June 2019
    Type:
    Audio and video

    Louise Haycock, director at Fragomen, takes us through the implications of Theresa May's resignation and the new proposed Brexit date of 31 October 2019.

  • MPs say EU settlement scheme risks Windrush re-run

    Date:
    30 May 2019
    Type:
    News

    The EU settlement scheme could lead to the unnecessary and unlawful deportations of people who should be entitled to live and work in the UK, a parliamentary report has stated.

  • What does Brexit teach us about negotiation and litigation?

    Date:
    8 May 2019
    Type:
    Commentary and analysis

    After more than two years of watching politicians grapple with one of the most complex negotiations the UK has ever been involved in, Paul Quain and Lisa Rix consider what we can learn from this in the context of employment disputes.