Brexit

Brexit: Deal or no deal? Is the future of the settled status scheme hanging in the balance?

Each day now presents new developments in the Brexit negotiations – and in an update to our article of 20 November 2018, the critical EU Summit has now taken place and the leaders of the EU27 Member States have now agreed the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU and the future relationship.   This brings to an end the negotiations which began some 20 months ago.  The terms have been declared the, ‘best and only deal possible’. So far so good.   However, despite this positive progress, a significant hurdle still remains.  The deal must now be approved by the …

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Draft withdrawal agreement is agreed (for now) – but what next for citizens’ rights?

On 14 November 2018, after many months of negotiations, the UK Government and the EU Commission finally announced that a draft withdrawal agreement (WA) on the legal terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU has been agreed, and at the same time they issued a ‘Political declaration setting out the framework for the future relationship between the UK and the EU’ . The WA is a lengthy document (running to nearly 600 pages) but, for employers, the key provisions of interest are likely to include the future rights of EU citizens to live and work in the UK (and, …

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Brexit: Deal on EU citizens agreed in principle

On 8 December 2017, an agreement in principle was reached between the UK and the EU on the future rights of EU citizens currently living lawfully in the UK.  In short, the Government has announced that these individuals will be able to stay in the UK and enjoy broadly the same rights and benefits as they do now.  This agreement applies equally to UK citizens currently living in the EU. However, a word of caution – this agreement is subject to the important caveat that ‘nothing is agreed until everything is agreed’.  For now, the Government maintains that EU citizens …

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Government publishes details of administrative processes for EU nationals

The Government has today published further information on the new administrative processes which will apply to EU nationals in the UK who wish to apply for settled or temporary status post-Brexit. In brief: The future status and rights of EU nationals will be defined in the Withdrawal Agreement (WA).  The WA will be incorporated into UK law, enabling EU citizens to enforce those rights. A new application system is being designed from scratch.  Applications will be for either (1) settled status – 5 years’ continuous lawful residence as a worker, self-employed person, student, self-sufficient person of family member thereof; or …

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Brexit: Latest developments on the future of EU nationals working in the UK

Employers who are monitoring the latest Brexit negotiations on the future status of EU nationals working in the UK may welcome the reassurance delivered by the Prime Minister in Florence recently that it remains one of her ‘first goals…. to ensure that [EU citizens] can carry on living…as before’, and that ‘the guarantee on….rights is real’. The Prime Minister says that ‘significant progress’ has been made, and this appears to include a concession that the UK courts will be able to take into account judgments of the European Court of Justice with a view to ensuring consistent interpretation around underlying …

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Brexit: Update on future rights of EU citizens in the UK

In an update to our Be Aware article of 12 July 2017, Government publishes proposals for EU nationals, the UK and the EU have just concluded the latest round of their Brexit negotiations which will be of interest to employers who are monitoring developments as part of a communications strategy for keeping EU nationals in their workforce informed of the latest position. In this latest round of negotiations, the Home Office has reported that progress has been made in relation to the rights of EU citizens living in the UK and UK nationals in the EU.  In particular, the UK …

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Government publishes proposals for EU nationals

After many months of speculation about the Government’s proposals for European nationals[1] currently living and working in the UK, the Government has now published its Policy Paper setting out its plans.  This is welcome news to employers employing European nationals in their workforce. Whilst the terms of the Policy Paper are still, of course, subject to negotiation with the EU (and an expectation that they will be reciprocated),  they do at least serve as a useful guide to the Government’s current stance. It is critical that employers keep up-to-date with the latest information. During this period of uncertainty, reassurance of …

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Brexit: Impact on European nationals in your workforce

The rights of European nationals[1] currently living and working in the UK has been one of the most high profile aspects of the Brexit process, and it remains a hot topic. The consistent message from UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, has been that securing the status of, and giving certainty to, European nationals already in the UK, and to UK nationals in the EU, is a priority for the Government.  For now, however, there is very little information about the Government’s proposals, and any plans must of course be negotiated with the remaining EU member states. It remains to be …

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Brexit White Paper: implications for employers

The Government has published its White Paper on the basis on which it proposes to approach negotiations with the EU on Brexit. There are three parts of the White Paper which will be of particular interest to employers: Controlling immigration; Securing rights for EU nationals in the UK and UK nationals in the EU; and Protecting workers’ rights. Controlling immigration As already widely reported, the Government will seek to end the free movement of people in order to control the numbers of people who come to the UK from the EU. Migration of EU nationals will be subject to UK …

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Brexit: Supreme Court holds that an Act of Parliament is necessary before UK Government can trigger Article 50

The UK Supreme Court today held by a margin of 8 judges to 3 that the UK Government cannot trigger the UK’s exit from the European Union without an Act of Parliament. It also held unanimously that UK ministers were not legally compelled to consult the devolved legislatures before triggering Article 50. Click here for more detail from dlapiper.com

Brexit: Update on the future of ECJ employment case law and directly effective employment rights

As we have reported previously,  the Government’s position in relation to the future of workers’ rights is that, through the mechanism of the “Great Repeal Bill”,  the UK’s EU derived employment laws will remain in place at Brexit and that workers’ existing rights will continue to be guaranteed in law.   This has been confirmed by both the Prime Minster, Theresa May and Brexit Secretary,  David Davis. Although this makes the position clear as regards employment rights which are enshrined in both primary and secondary UK legislation,  less certain is what the post-Brexit status will be of directly effective EU Rights, …

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Brexit: What next in the Article 50 judicial review?

The English High Court today held that the UK Government cannot trigger Article 50 of the EU Treaty to commence the UK’s exit from the European Union, or ‘Brexit’, without referring the matter to Parliament. This differs from the earlier decision by the Northern Ireland High Court, where the argument that exit required an Act of Parliament or some other form of Parliamentary mandate was rejected. Key points in the judgment  The UK Government had argued that in enacting the European Communities Act 1972 – the legislation which governed the UK’s entry to the European Union in 1973 – the …

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High Court hears legal challenge to Government triggering Article 50 to leave the EU

The High Court has heard 3 days of argument in legal proceedings brought by a group of individuals seeking to determine whether the UK Government has the legal power to trigger the Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union process to leave the EU without an Act of Parliament. A number of British citizens are suing the Government claiming that leaving the European Union will deny them rights derived from the treaties of the European Union which have been given force in UK law under the European Communities Act 1972, which they claim can only be removed by …

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Brexit timing clarified: employment law set to continue intact

The Conservative Party Conference has provided Theresa May, and her Government, with an opportunity to publicise their plans for the timing of Brexit. In her speech to the Conference on 2 October,  the Prime Minster announced that – Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty will be invoked by the end of March 2017, triggering the start of the UK’s formal withdrawal from the European Union.  At that point, the two year period of negotiations between the EU and the UK, to design the exit agreement, will commence. The UK will leave the Union by March 2019 (absent an agreed extension). …

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Employers: Do your ‘right to work’ checks stand up to scrutiny?

Business immigration issues have not been far from the headlines since the Brexit referendum in June 2016 and, at the weekend, Theresa May announced that Britain will decide for itself how it will control immigration and that it “will be free to pass [its] own laws”. One of the key areas of focus in recent months has been on illegal working, where there have been significant developments. July 2016 saw the introduction of new measures creating a wider criminal offence with increased criminal sanctions, and the implementation of new enforcement powers for the Home Office – see our Be Aware …

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