At a Glance
- The Home Secretary has asked the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) to conduct a review of Australia's and similar immigration systems to determine best practices for a post-Brexit UK immigration system that would strengthen the labor market. The review, which is due back by January 2020, is part of a larger ongoing salary threshold evaluation which the MAC is already reviewing.
- The government has also confirmed that if the United Kingdom departs from the European Union without a deal on October 31, 2019, it will honor the previous government's plans to introduce a European Temporary Leave to Remain Scheme for European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss nationals and their close family members.
- In addition, the government has announced that new border controls will be introduced in the event of a no-deal Brexit which will make it more difficult for serious criminals to enter the United Kingdom.
The Home Secretary has asked the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) to conduct a review of Australia's and other similar immigration systems to determine best practices for a post-Brexit UK immigration system as part of its ongoing review into salary thresholds. The MAC is an independent, non-departmental public body sponsored by the Home Office that advises the government on migration issues.
In a busy week of political developments, the government also announced that in the event of a no-deal Brexit, it will honor the plan formed under Theresa May's government to introduce a European Temporary Leave to Remain scheme (Euro TLR) and will introduce tighter security checks designed to make it more difficult for serious criminals to enter the United Kingdom.
A closer look
Details of the post-Brexit planning include the following:
|MAC review of Australian immigration system||
|Government confirms immigration plans for a no-deal Brexit||
The announcements come amidst a great deal of uncertainty as press coverage indicated that the Home Secretary contemplated ending free movement overnight and Members of Parliament passed a bill to attempt to block a no-deal exit this week. The bill is currently being debated in the House of Lords and is likely to obtain Royal Assent next week.
Nevertheless, the default position is that the United Kingdom will leave the European Union on October 31, 2019 without a deal unless a further extension or a deal is agreed before then.
- Emergency bill to block a no-deal outcome. If the bill to block a no-deal exit from the European Union obtains Royal Assent next week, it will become law and will give the Prime Minister until October 19, 2019 to either pass a deal in Parliament or to approve a no-deal Brexit. Otherwise, the Prime Minister is instructed to request an extension for the United Kingdom's departure date to January 31, 2020 from the European Union.
- Upcoming general election. The Prime Minister has repeatedly stated he does not intend to request a further extension and has attempted to pass a bill calling for a general election on October 15, 2019. This was defeated, but opposition parties have indicated they would support an election either once the bill to block the no-deal Brexit passes into law next week or has been implemented in practice (i.e. an extension or deal has been secured, which is likely to be later in October). The chance of an election therefore remains high, although the date and circumstance surrounding it is in flux.
- Preparation for a no-deal Brexit. Although Parliament is attempting to block a no-deal exit, this is not guaranteed given the likely upcoming general election and since it is unclear if the European Union will agree to a further extension. Fragomen's advice therefore remains to ensure that businesses have contingency plans in place for a no-deal Brexit on October 31, 2019.
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