Member News

UK hands in formal Brexit notification

As announced, UK Prime Minister Theresa May today lodged with the EU Council a notification under Article 50(2) EU Treaty, i.e. the UK’s formal notification of its intention to withdraw from the EU. This notification triggers a two-year period for negotiations between the UK and the rest of the EU which should culminate in a withdrawal agreement. Failing such an agreement, the UK will leave the EU by operation of law after the two years, unless that period is unanimously extended by the 27 remaining member states. Since the EU has never dealt with such a “divorce” process before, today’s step gives rise to many questions, covering a wide range of topics and rules.
To shed some light on what will happen in their fields of expertise, several NautaDutilh specialists have assessed the most important consequences of the Article 50(2) notification.

Is the Article 50(2) EU Treaty notification reversible? 
In the wake of the UK High Court and Supreme Court decisions in the Miller case, a discussion has arisen as to whether the Article 50(2) EU Treaty notification, which is the official notification of the UK’s intention to withdraw from the EU, can be retracted pending the withdrawal negotiations. An important question because it has important consequences for the UK’s negotiation position. Read more. 

Early trade negotiations with third states: a breach of EU law?
One of the hotly debated issues relating to Brexit is whether the UK can negotiate trade agreements with non-EU countries while it is still an EU member state, so as to avoid a legal vacuum from occurring upon its withdrawal from the EU. Read more.

The Great Repeal Bil
On 2 October 2016 Theresa May announced plans to introduce a “Great Repeal Bill” to replace all EU legislation currently applicable in the UK in one go. The Act resulting from that bill, which is intended to enter into force on the day of the actual Brexit, is the proposed solution to the question: which laws will continue to – or, more importantly, will no longer – apply to the UK on that day? Read more. 

Brexit keeps United Patent Court in limbo
Despite the Brexit vote and contrary to the expectations of many IP professionals, the UK recently announced that it intends to ratify the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court. It is by no means certain, however, how this rather unexpected move will play out once Brexit materialises. Read more.

Financial services post-Brexit: With or without a passport?
In the post-Brexit world UK financial institutions will, in principle, no longer be able to benefit from a European passport. Third-country equivalence provisions may in some cases offer relief but are far from a panacea. Read more.

Negotiating the UK’s exit fee: are all bets off?
European Commission President Juncker has recently warned the UK that it may have to pay a “Brexit fee” of up to EUR 60 billion upon leaving the EU. This warning has given rise to a discussion on whether there is a legal basis for such a payment obligation. Read more.

Brexit and the UK immigration policy
In the wake of the Brexit referendum, practical and legal concerns have arisen as to how the rules on migration between the UK and the rest of the EU will change and from what date. The announcement by Prime Minister May that the Article 50 notification date will be used as a cut-off date has especially given rise to debate. Read more

Compliments of NautaDutilh – a member of the EACCNY