James Segan: The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018: Ten Key Implications for UK Law and Lawyers

UK Constitutional Law Association

On 26 June 2018, after nearly a year of deliberation by Parliament, the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 (the “Act”) received royal assent. It is a statute of profound importance to the legal systems of the UK. This post seeks briefly to summarise the purpose and architecture of the Act and to outline ten key implications for UK law and lawyers.

Purpose and architecture of the Act

The basic purpose of the Act is to repeal the ECA 1972 but then retain in effect after “exit day” almost all UK laws which have been derived from the UK’s membership of the European Union since 1 January 1973. “Exit day” is defined as 29 March 2019 at 11pm (section 20(1)). The central architecture of the Act is this:

  • Section 1 repeals the ECA 1972 on exit day;
  • Section 2 continues in force all “EU-derived domestic legislation”, which is principally delegated legislation…

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