Brexit – the story for employers so far

The UK electorate voted to leave the European Union in a referendum on 23 June 2016. The legal process for exiting the EU began when the UK notified of its intention to withdraw under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty on 29 March 2017. The UK and the EU had two years to decide on the terms of the withdrawal, particularly the extent of the UK’s access to the single market versus the degree to which EU workers retain freedom of movement to the UK.

On 21 March 2019, eight days before the scheduled departure date, the EU offered to delay Brexit until 22 May if MPs approve the deal that has been negotiated. If they could not, a no-deal Brexit would happen on 12 April.

On 11 April, the EU allowed a “flexible extension” to 31 October 2019. Boris Johnson, who took over as prime minister in July, had vowed to leave the EU by that date “do or die”, having negotiated a new deal with the EU. However on 28 October 2019, the EU agreed to extend Brexit again, this time to 31 January 2020.

Our Brexit pages provide news and guidance on all aspects of the UK’s exit from the EU.


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