Brexit – noteworthy dates

Brexit has brought an air of uncertainty for companies operating in and doing business with the United Kingdom.  As no country has left the EU before, no one knows what the process looks like and what impact it will have on businesses. The negotiations are still ongoing and in order to be as prepared as can be, companies are advised to keep an eye on official updates from the European Union and the British government so as to know where to focus efforts.

Below are some noteworthy dates to keep in mind to stay up to date with the latest updates on the Brexit process.

2018

17-18 October

EU summit. The official deadline for setting out the terms to be included in the withdrawal agreement for the “divorce” between the EU and the UK.

End of October

The Withdrawal Agreement is expected to be finalised.

November

EU has suggested this month as the latest a deal can be finalised. However, an exact date has yet to be agreed.

13-14 December

EU summit. This is the fall-back option in case no deal has been reached by October and both sides continue to want to reach an agreement.

 

2019

21 January

If the withdrawal agreement has not been presented by the government on this date, the Members of Parliament (MPs) will be granted powers to influence ministers’ next steps.

21-22 March

The final summit that the UK is expected to attend as a member of the EU.

Before 29 March

The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill needs to be approved and passed by Parliament to implement the agreement.

26 March at 11:00pm GMT

The UK leaves the EU.

23-26 May

Elections for the European Parliament in 27 EU countries – the UK will no longer be represented.

 

2020

31 December

Expected to be the last date of the transition period

 

Stay up to date on Brexit!

There are many ways you can stay updated about Brexit with Goodwille.

Sign up to our Brexit Newsletter to receive updates and developments of the Brexit negotiations straight to your inbox.

On our Brexit page, we have also consolidated everything discussed about to date to provide you a resource where you can track the developments of the negotiations as they happen.

Additionally, Goodwille has created a committee to monitor the progress of Brexit from a European perspective as well as the UK one. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about how Brexit will impact your business in or with the UK post-Brexit.


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

Can London tech businesses boost economic growth in a post-Brexit UK?

Brexit continues to occupy much of the space in the British and international media, with debate ongoing as to what the UK’s withdrawal from the EU will mean for business.

Recent government impact studies have shown that as much as 8% could be chipped off Britain’s GDP if the UK leaves the EU with no deal in place. Five percent of GDP will apparently go missing if they conclude a free trade agreement with the EU, according to the leaked reports published by BuzzFeed.

Even if Britain stays in the European Economic Area after leaving the EU, the damage will still be around 2% of GDP, according to the leaked impact assessments. Those figures suggest that some serious innovation will be required by businesses to keep the British economy on track and moving in a positive direction.

So what can be done? Well, tech startups in London could be a big part of the answer. If anyone is wanting to set up a UK company of this type, London is a good city to choose. There are a number of reasons for this.

Tellingly, London has a youthful, dynamic and diverse population, that is also very large. A massive chunk of the city’s population is classed as being millennials, a demographic which is naturally drawn to technology companies.

An indicator of the opportunities available to companies who set up in this part of the UK is that in 2015, London-based start-ups created 20,000 new jobs. They also managed to raise £1.3 billion. Now, in 2017, there is also a massive availability of investment platforms and accelerators, which can help a new business in London grow. These include TechStars, Crowdcube and Shell Livewire.

If you are looking to set up a new company in the UK, or diversify some of your operations by expanding your current business from overseas into the UK, then London is a good place to look. This is especially true for tech companies. There is a ready supply of workers and customers in one of the world’s most international cities. Brexit may well be on its way, and casting a shadow over the UK economy, but the opportunities to thrive in a city like London are still there to be grasped.

With years of experience helping foreign tech startups establish in the UK, Goodwille can help you with everything you need to succeed on the UK market.
Get in touch with us today if you need any advice or help with your company expansion.


Are you worried about what impact Brexit might have on your future possibilities to do business? We have consolidated everything you need to know about Brexit on our Brexit Tracker. The Tracker is updated as discussions go along, so it’s always up to date with the most recent progress of the Brexit negotiations. You find the Brexit Tracker on goodwille.com/brexit.

Freedom of Establishment – Corporate Mobility

Often labelled as “passporting”, Corporate Mobility means that once a company is established in one EU member state, others will need to recognise it as validly established legal entity. As a result, an established company can sell goods or services to other EU countries, in principle without needing to establish a branch or subsidiary there.  In some instances, member states’ tax rules will still require establishment of a local entity. An example here is the UK legal obligation to form a “UK establishment” (subsidiary or branch) when certain criteria are met. Several questions come to mind in relation to the future of this freedom…

Will you need to establish an entity in the UK to run operations smoothly?
If you have a UK Branch, should you form a subsidiary to strengthen your UK base?

Answers to these questions will vary depending on where your company is based, as well as what Brexit scenario the future holds – will there be a “hard Brexit” or not, how long is the transition period, will Mrs May negotiate a solution for corporate mobility?

To illustrate the background: Most continental EU jurisdictions (e.g. France, Germany) adopt the “Real Seat Theory”. This means the company will follow the company law where it has its real seat, being the location of the company’s centre of management or central administration. The second theory, called “Legal Seat Doctrine” (adopted, for example, in England), the applicable company law is determined by the jurisdiction where the company is incorporated.

This means that a UK established company, whether or not it is a foreign subsidiary or not, will retain its legal status in the UK irrespective of the Brexit model applied. Depending on business carried out in other EU member states, your UK established company may need to explore whether you should set up an entity in another EU country if you do not currently have such an entity. This will be particularly relevant for companies registered in one of the UK jurisdictions but having their central administration in a “Real Seat Country”.  Those types of businesses may risk to be regarded as unincorporated associations following Brexit, thus potentially losing their status as legal entity in those other member states.

On the flip side, if you are currently operating an entity outside the UK and are carrying out regular business with the UK, you may not have the benefit of being regarded as legal entity in the UK. Depending on your exposure to the UK market and business plans, you may wish to consider setting up a UK Limited company to strengthen your base. Whilst it is not possible to advice on what precisely will happen, we have seen this used as a contingency approach during less certain times.

Watch this space for a detailed analysis on any indications we have seen so far on how the UK is looking to fare with your Corporate Mobility!

 

 

If you have any questions about Corporate Mobility,
get in touch with Tessa Schrempf,
Corporate Legal Controller at Goodwille.
tessa.schrempf@goodwille.com

 


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

Free Movement of Goods

The free movement of goods is one of the cornerstones of EU law and business. It essentially is a two-sided coin, and provides for tariff‑free access to the single market and the elimination of non‑tariff barriers such as product regulation and approvals.

The issue concerning the status of UK rules vis-à-vis laws pertaining to the movement of goods and services, as well as changes to the VAT system, increasingly captivates our interest day by day. As the UK hopes to achieve a bespoke agreement, the British government will seek to maintain the closest relationship with the EU and, as UK Prime Minister Theresa May was heard saying during her Florence speech, a frictionless trade agreement between the bloc and the UK. The Draft Withdrawal Agreement published on 19th March 2018 supports this approach. One of the clauses both parties have agreed on stipulates that any good that was lawfully placed on the EU or UK market before 31st December 2020 should be able to continue to circulate freely until reaching the end-user. The existing rules on free movement of goods will largely remain in force during the Transition Period, with some applicable exceptions.

These developments are at least an interim departure from Mrs May’s ruling out of remaining in the single market or customs union. It remains to be seen how the post-Transition Period deals with the matter of freedom of goods, but future developments do not necessarily threaten frictionless EU-UK trade. UK industries and their respective sectors are highly integrated with the single market; the Office of National Statistics (ONS) state that over 59% of UK imports are of EU origin, whilst 48% of UK exports end up within the community.

It would not be in Britain’s interest to lose free-trade access to the EU, as the UK would lose access to countries with which the EU and European Economic Area (EEA) have also been negotiating free trade agreements. Moreover, a weakened Pound Sterling at the outset of the June 2016 Referendum, has seen demand for UK-built goods abroad increase, as exports became cheaper, and tourism saw improvement, where visiting the UK became more affordable. There is scope to protect frictionless trade in goods and services and to secure proper VAT processes following Brexit.

VAT and the flow of goods and services are symbiotic, and they will adhere too much of PM May’s rhetoric concerning the maintenance of seamless trade with the EU – predictability. Voices that declare that Brexit means “taking back control” are purported, as past decisions made by the European Court of Justice will be influential in the continued interpretation of VAT law in British law. The EU VAT Directive have been soaked up by British courts, and this is another signal that the path Britain is taking concerning goods, services and VAT will be governed by the virtues our company seeks to aspire to: predictability and reliability.

Additionally, issues concerning the future of services or goods do not seem to be so challenging at this stage, many self-accounting rules for VAT on services bought from the EU will remain broadly unchanged and there could be further opportunities; especially if one considers that EC Sales List declarations may not need to be completed. This suggests an orderly process of transposition and transition in a post-EU UK as being the name of the game.

In areas concerning the exchange and freedom of movement concerning technologies, the UK seeks to maintain its position as a leading provider and market for hi-tech industries. Upon reading the UK’s Industrial Strategy Paper in November, the UK seeks to increase innovation by raising total research and development investment to 2.4% of GDP by 2027. Over £1 Billion will be invested to boost Britain’s digital infrastructure, £176million for 5G and £200million invested to foster full-fibre networks in the UK. Equally important is the UK’s drive to invest £20 billion into innovative and high potential businesses.

 

 

If you have any questions about Free Movement of Goods,
get in touch with Alexander Goodwille,
CEO at Goodwille. 

alexander.goodwille@goodwille.com

 


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

Free Movement of People – Individual Mobility

By law, this freedom is called “Freedom of Workers”. We have expanded the notion here as in practice, it relates to more than just EU workers and includes for example family members and jobseekers, but also students and unemployed Union citizens. We have picked out the three most relevant categories here below.

Brexit for Employees

There has been a lot of speculation over the past 2 years around Brexit which has perhaps meant that many non-British citizens are questioning the security of their current situation in the UK. The key information is that there will be no change to the legal rights of EU nationals living in the UK until at least 31st December 2020, or later if there is an extension.

In December 2017, the UK Government announced that an agreement had been reached with the European Commission on citizens’ rights, whereby EU citizens who arrive in the UK by 29 March 2019 will be entitled to apply for “settled status” (see below) when they have five years’ continuous residence in the UK. However, the Draft Withdrawal Agreement published on 19th March 2019 confirmed that free movement of people will be extended to the start of 2021. This recent assurance means that EU Nationals arriving in the UK would be able to stay in the UK indefinitely and also access work permits via the new immigration regime.

Did you know…

  • Currently, citizens of EEA countries and Switzerland plus any non EEA family members can live and work in the UK and do not need any specific permission to do so at present, however in the interests of security and perhaps reassurance, it could be beneficial to formally request documentation.
  • There are pro’s and cons regarding applying for Permanent Residency at this time and also criteria as to whether an individual has this option open to them, i.e. one stipulation is that an individual must have been a continuous resident in the UK for 5 years or more.
  • Currently anyone who is an EU citizen living and working in the UK does not have to make an application to preserve their rights at this time; and indeed the Home Office are encouraging EU citizens to not make applications just now as they are inundated with applications.
  • There will however be the need to demonstrate via documentation in the future that an individual has the right to live and work in the UK. This could be via Permanent Residency, British Citizenship or Visa, but the longer term plan would be that individuals who do not hold visa status will apply for Settled Worker status (which will be discussed later in the newsletter). Those currently holding Permanent Residency will also need to apply for Settled Worker status.
  • Key areas which individuals may want to consider are whether they wish to be British (British Citizenship or Settled Worker), whether they would like the right to vote in the UK, whether holding dual citizenship is a possibility, whether they have EU family members who they would like to bring with them to live in the UK (as the British Immigration rules may be more restrictive than those currently enforced under the EU) and their taxation status.

Brexit for Employers

As discussed above, immediate uncertainties over the immigration status post-Brexit were addressed in the Draft Withdrawal Agreement confirming EU citizens’ rights to remain unchanged until 31st December 2020. As previously, this means for the moment there is no issue for EU nationals to live and work in the UK. Irrespective of the recent assurances, employers need to think about future proofing their business, which of course means looking at how the company can support both current non British employees and also potential hires from outside the UK.

Some thoughts to bear in mind:

  • Consider the workforce and how many non-British employees are in the business or British employees who may have non-British spouses.
  • What can your business afford by way of assistance? Consider presentations explaining the current status re immigration and Brexit and also presentations to assist with applications. Perhaps you can afford to pay for some legal support for employees who may be affected?
  • When you are hiring non-British employees, consider that they may wish to have some reassurance from you that post Brexit, should they not be in a position to stay and work in the UK that they will have some support, this could be by way of a clause in a contract, legal assistance, relocation package etc.
  • There is an expectation that there will still be a high requirement for EU talent in the UK post Brexit. There is a continuing skills shortage in the UK particularly within Tech.
  • There may be a greater need for UK Companies to apply for sponsorship licences to perhaps cover both EU talent and also of course talent from outside of the EU (as is current practice).
  • There are an expanded list of sponsorship licence categories and Companies need to decide which (if any) are more appropriate for them if needed.
  • There is an expectation that there will be greater restrictions on low skilled workers looking to work in the UK with visa’s capped at 2 years. This cap is also to extend to high skill workers with some visa categorisations, where they will be able to stay for 5 years without settlement status.
  • Companies should think about ensuring they are tightening up their compliance checks, including Right to Work checks (which are the minimum which an employer has a responsibility to carry out currently). Compliance is extremely important for sponsorship licences and failure to comply could mean loss of licences and the personnel sponsored by the Company.

Settled Worker Status

In December 2017, the Government announced that it had reached an agreement with the European Commission on citizens’ rights, under which EU citizens arriving in the UK by 29 March 2019 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. Settled Status is currently known as Permanent Residence, however those currently living and working in the UK under a Permanent Residence agreement will need to also apply for Settled Status.

Applicants who are not able to give evidence of five years’ continuous residence necessary to obtain settled status, but who can evidence that they were resident before the specified date, will be given temporary status. This means that they will be given the opportunity to build up the required longevity of residency to be able to apply for Settled Status.

 


If you have any questions about Individual Mobility,
get in touch with Jacqui Brown,
HR Manager at Goodwille. 

jacqui.brown@goodwille.com

 


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

The Key Aspects of the Draft Withdrawal Agreement

The key aspects of the Draft Withdrawal Agreement announced in Brussels on 19th March are:

  • The Transition Period will last from Brexit Day on 29th March 2019 until 31st December 2020
  • UK citizens arriving in the EU, and EU citizens arriving in the UK during the Transition Period will enjoy the same rights and guarantees as those who arrive before Brexit Day.
  • The UK will remain party to existing EU trade deals with third countries, but will simultaneously be able to negotiate, sign and ratify its own trade deals during the Transition Period
  • The UK will remain part of the Common Fisheries Policy during the Transition Period, yet without a direct say in its rules. The UK’s share of fishing catch will be guaranteed until the end of 2020. Through 2020, the UK will be negotiating fishing opportunities as an independent coastal state.
  • The issue of Northern Ireland remains a key point of negotiations. In all likelihood, NI will effectively stay in parts of the single market and the customs union in order to avoid a ‘hard border’ with the Republic of Ireland.

This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

Article 50 triggered – What happens next

March 29th
Article 50 is officially invoked – Brexit process begins
Unless both sides agree on an extension, the UK and the EU have two years to agree a divorce deal before the bloc’s treaties cease to apply to Britain.

March 30st
Brexit secretary David Davis has unveiled the government’s Great Repeal Bill
The bill will bring all EU laws onto the UK books, converting all EU requirements into British law as soon as Britain exits the bloc, which gives Parliament the power to absorb parts of EU legislation into UK law and scrap elements it does not want to keep.

March 31st
Remaining 27 EU countries will send their guidelines for negotiations
The other 27 EU countries will send their guidelines for the negotiations to the European Council in Brussels, which’ll then draw them together in one draft document and presented by President of European Council Donald Tusk.

April 29th
EU 27 summit.
Deadline for the remaining 27 EU countries to agree on and prepare a joint document outlining what the EU will be seeking in the negotiations. The 27 heads of state will convene in Brussels on this date to approve the final details of what they want and do not want for Brexit.

Immediately after the summit Indications of future relationship between the EU and the UK
The European Commission will publish its negotiation guidelines. The institution will use the document to negotiate with the UK government, given that it is the Union’s main negotiator. The guidelines may give a first indications of what a future relationship between the EU and the UK might look like.

23 April / 7 May 2017
French Presidential Election

May/June Official negotiations between the EU council and the UK government begin
Even with the guidelines ready from both the EU and the UK, the actual Brexit talks have not yet begun. The green light for that will only come from the EU’s foreign affairs ministers. At the moment, foreign affairs ministers have meetings scheduled for 16th of May and 20th of June. They could however schedule an emergency meeting between those dates to approve the kicking off of the talks.

September 24th
German Federal Election

No later than 23 May 2018
Italian General Election

October 2018 – March 2019
Vote on Brexit deal
With a Brexit deal drawn up, the Houses of Parliament, European Council and European Parliament will vote on the terms of the deal, paving the way for an agreement or an extension on the negotiating period.

April 2019
UK departure from the EU should be complete

How long will it take for Britain to leave the EU?
Article 50 is triggered and the UK have two years to negotiate its withdrawal. But no one really knows how the Brexit process will work – Article 50 was only created in late 2009 and it has never been used. Former Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, now Chancellor, wanted Britain to remain in the EU, and he has suggested it could take up to six years for the UK to complete exit negotiations. The terms of Britain’s exit will have to be agreed by 27 national parliaments, a process which could take some years, he has argued.


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

Right to remain: EU residents likely to remain in the UK post Brexit

Theresa May has today triggered Article 50 which kick-starts potentially two-years of Brexit negotiations. With nearly 50 percent of our employees from EU countries, and a large international client base, we want to share why we and many others believe EU residents will be able to remain in the UK post BREXIT negotiations.

The Facts

Around 3.3million EU nationals currently live in the UK, compared with the 1.2m Britons who live on the continent. For these people the questions are many, the answers few and the timeframe long.

Mrs May has long claimed that she would like to guarantee the right-to-remain for the 3m EU nationals residing and working in Britain. But last summer she declared that she could not do this without getting a reciprocal guarantee for the 1m or so Britons resident in other EU countries – a fair deal in many peoples’ eyes.

The real worry is not whether to let EU migrants stay but how to process them. In practice nearly everyone agrees that almost all residents will be allowed to remain. Around 84 per cent of the EU nationals already have the right to stay post-Brexit, because they have been here for five years or more. Many are children who were born here or have a parent that already has the right-to-stay.

The bigger concern is the bureaucracy involved.

EU Residents in the UK

Annual net migration from Europe has more than doubled since 2012, reaching 183,000 in March 2015. Many consider this a boon: according to research from the Centre for Economic Performance, a think-tank, EU migrants are more likely to be university-educated, less likely to claim benefits and more likely to be in a job than the native-born population. Immigration from the European Union is currently boosting the workforce by around 0.5% a year. This has helped support the economy’s ability to grow without pushing up wage growth and inflation, keeping interest rates lower for longer.

“EU citizens living in the UK make a vital contribution to our society and economy. Without them, we would be poorer and our public services weaker.” – Mrs May. These comments by the Prime Minister echo her views on the importance of EU migrants in the UK, so we are confident she will do everything she can to ensure their right to remain.

Business and the country needs the contribution of EU citizens in the workforce so any bigger changes for people already here are unlikely, reckons Madeleine Sumption of the Migration Observatory.

Industries struggling to replace human labour with technology, would be left foundering without a ready supply of migrant labour. Britain does not train enough skilled construction workers to meet demand, according to UCATT, the industry’s trade union. Food businesses would be hard hit, too. More than a quarter of those who work in that sector are EU citizens. And without migrants willing to do the seasonal grunt work of plucking fruit and vegetables from the fields, crops would rot, unpicked, and supermarket shelves would soon be empty of British produce, says Chris Hartfield of the National Farmers’ Union.

With fewer new European arrivals, British firms would need ways of making up the shortfall. One answer, Eurosceptics say, would be to offer the jobs to Britons instead. But if they can’t be persuaded to pick cabbages, it could mean taking migrants from elsewhere: without European labourers, new seasonal worker programmes would be necessary, says Mr Hartfield. There could be other unintended consequences.

The Deadline & Outcome

One issue is the cut-off point for EU nationals who want to stay. Some have proposed June 23rd 2016, the date of the referendum, but this has no basis in law. Other leading publications are arguing deadline day to be either today, the trigger date or Article 50, or when Britain actually leaves the EU, (likely to be in March 2019).

Although it may come as a surprise to many who watched the campaign, the Leave side stated before the referendum that EU citizens who were “lawfully resident” in Britain would “automatically be granted indefinite leave to remain”. Depending on the deal Britain extracts from the EU, it is more likely that future migrants would be subject to tougher laws, or that family members of current EU migrants would not be allowed in to Britain.

We are going to learn a lot during the following weeks, as fixing this is Theresa May and the governments’ main priority. But whatever Britons decide about their future without the EU, migrants are unlikely simply to vanish.

Over the coming months (and years) we will share the developments of Brexit, and the likely impact of Brexit on inward investment and EU migrants. For more information please contact marketing@goodwille.com


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

How will Brexit affect EU expats living and working in the UK?

The recent Brexit result has sent shockwaves all over Europe, and under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, the UK has two years to leave the EU. There has been particular concern among EU expats currently living and working in Britain, and those who intend to move to, work in and set up a business in the UK in future. Will EU expats have to move out of Britain? Will new restrictions be imposed for those moving to the UK? Although nothing concrete has been set in place as of yet, speculation has been rife.

Before the vote

Citizens of any state that is a member of the EU are presently free to live and work anywhere in the bloc. Before the vote, leave supporters maintained that EU citizens already lawfully residing in the UK would not be affected by the result; however, remain campaigners said that EU citizens would lose their ‘automatic right’ to work in the UK, and more restrictions are likely to be implemented that will make working in Britain more difficult . This stark contrast in claims created a lot of confusion in the run up to the vote, and everyone is still unsure about what will happen next.

Expert expat predictions

Experts have predicted that workers will probably not be able to move as freely through Europe as is currently the case. Nevertheless, changes will happen gradually as a new system takes time to establish itself . A new trading relationship will also need to be created with the EU.

Furthermore, it is thought that although EU citizens already residing in the UK are unlikely to be affected, there may be new administrative procedures put in place, such as visas or work permits, for those who don’t already live and work in Britain. An Australian or US-style points system may also be implemented.

The personal finances of EU expats living in Britain will also be affected. The fall in sterling and instability of the pound means that any money expats send to families living overseas will not be worth as much as it was.

It remains to be seen how EU expats living, working and setting up business in the UK will be affected in light of the Brexit vote. If you are in the process of setting up a business in Britain, Goodwille can provide you with expert legal and financial advice to help you to navigate UK laws and customs. Contact us now for more information.


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.

BREXIT – We’re here to help

After a heated political campaign, voters in the United Kingdom decided by a slim margin, on June 23, to exit the European Union, leading to a change in government. Now that a new prime minister has taken over, the next big question looms: How will the UK and EU negotiate their split?

New Prime Minister Theresa May said “Brexit means Brexit” – but what does that actually mean? Nobody will know exactly what it means until negotiations are completed in 2019, and even after that there will be surprises.

We know what people voted against, but it’s far from clear what they voted for. Solving Brexit conundrum will take time and, Brexit doesn’t even have to happen. There is a belief that the Article 50 exit clause will be triggered at some point over the next six months.This belief may be misplaced, as it is in the UK’s interest, from a negotiating perspective, to delay the triggering for as long as possible. Every day seems to bring about a new, seemingly unforeseen, angle to the decision. There will be short-term and long-term economic implications of the UK’s decision to leave the EU.

Taavet Hinrikus, CEO and Co-founder of TransferWise, a London-based cross-border payments startup, said, “Nothing’s changed yet but everything’s changed. This is likely to affect regulation and the movement of talent: two massive issues for business.”

The concern over immigration from the EU to the UK was one of the major campaign issues of the ‘Leave’ camp in the Brexit referendum. Companies which employ citizens from other EU Member States will be concerned about any change to the freedom of movement of EU nationals.

Following Britain’s vote to leave the EU, one major area of focus has been the potential effect on trade. Negotiating such deals is a complicated, time-consuming business. Few countries will want to sign any deal with UK until they know the precise nature of our post-Brexit relationship with the EU. If the UK loses Single Market access, UK firms and EU firms won’t be able to passport financial services businesses, products and services in and out of London, which is likely to have a significant impact on London’s current position as a leading international financial centre.

The questions are many and the confusion widespread. At Goodwille we will be here to guide you as information is announced, as well as help answering any questions about what a potential Brexit could entail for companies and professionals. If you need to get in contact with us regarding this, please email us on marketing@goodwille.com or call +44 (0)20 7795 8100.


This update is for general guidance only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in all cases. This material is the copyright of Goodwille Limited (unless otherwise stipulated) and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written consent.