Upcoming Brexit Meaningful Vote – comment from Hogan Lovells

London, 12 March 2019 – Hogan Lovells provides comment on the upcoming Meaningful Vote.

Susan Bright, Regional Managing Partner for the UK and Africa at Hogan Lovells, said: "Theresa May has promised a meaningful moment this week. If her deal – "improved" by an additional text agreed with the EU last night – is voted down again today, then what happens next will be up to Parliament. To an extent. A third vote against a no-deal exit will not stop the UK's departure on 29 March without a deal – that remains the default outcome. With a materially different deal now looking implausible, the options open to a Parliament opposed to a no deal exit will be to delay Brexit day or cancel Brexit entirely. The first will require a majority in Parliament, and will mean convincing each of the EU27 that there is a real purpose for the postponement. The second would almost certainly need an Act of Parliament, requiring a majority of MPs to vote against their manifesto positions. That is why businesses should continue to focus their preparations on the risk of the UK leaving the EU on 29 March without an exit deal.

"Before then, attention will turn to the substance and legal effect of these additional texts, and the Attorney General's advice on them.  The key question will be whether an "interpretative" instrument can amount to adequate assurance on the effect of the backstop with no direct amendment to the Withdrawal Agreement itself. In the end, the answer to that will be a political one." 

Brexit webinar – 15 March at 11am
Tune in to our latest Brexit Webinar on 15 March at 11am, when we will take stock of the week's developments.  A number of our partners will give their reactions to the events, along with colleagues from the CBI, who will be joining us. If you would like to register for this event, please reply to this email.

Brexit media enquiries
If you would like to speak to one of the following Hogan Lovells Brexit experts, feel free to contact me and I would be happy to arrange a meeting.

  • Susan Bright, Regional Managing Partner for the UK and Africa - General business commentary, Antitrust/competition issues 
  • Charles Brasted, Partner, Head of Public law and policy practice at Hogan Lovells - General business commentary, UK constitutional and administrative law, EU law, international law and human rights law  
  • Rachel Kent, Partner, Head of Financial Services Regulation at Hogan Lovells - Impact on financial Institutions 
  • Aline Doussin, Partner, Head of UK trade at Hogan Lovells - Impact on trade, customs-related issues 
  • Lourdes Catrain, Partner, International Trade - Impact on trade, trade negotiations, the view from Brussels 
  • Markus Burgstaller, Partner, Public law and policy practice at Hogan Lovells, Litigation and Arbitration expert


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