Government Defeated On EU Withdrawal Bill

15 Dec 2017, 18 mins ago

Wednesday 13 December 2017 marked the seventh day of debate in the House of Commons on the contents of the EU withdrawal bill. Following the debate, a vote took place in evening, which saw the Bill defeated by 309 to 305.  Ministers have been forced to admit that this defeat is a “significant setback” but have also insisted that it will not frustrate the Brexit process.

This EU Withdrawal Bill is an essential part of the government’s exit strategy. The defeated Bill focused on several issues, primarily:

  • Ending the supremacy of EU Law and convert EU law into UK domestic law as it stands at the moment of exit from the EU;
  • Enabling UK domestic law to reflect the contents of a withdrawal agreement once the UK leaves the EU; and
  • Repealing the European Communities Act 1972 (ECA) on the day that the UK leaves the EU.

There have been numerous attempts to change the wording of this Bill but this is the fist time one has succeeded. The Government must secure the agreement of Parliament before it can implement the withdrawal deal they hope to reach with Brussels.

Whilst this is a significant defeat for the Government, they have won every other vote on the EU Withdrawal Bill to date. The next vote will be taking place next week, and this is for the Brexit date to be fixed as 29 March 2019 and to write that date into law.

As the situation unfolds, Gherson continues to monitor the on-going Brexit negotiations. Should you require any assistance in applying for permanent residence or to discuss the protection of your status in the UK, please contact us.


The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please don’t hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.

©Gherson 2017