No deal Brexit—applicable law
No deal Brexit—applicable law

The following Dispute Resolution guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • No deal Brexit—applicable law
  • Determining applicable law in EU Member States
  • Determining applicable law in the UK courts
  • Retained EU legislation
  • Status of case law interpreting Rome I and Rome II

This Practice Note considers the effect of the UK leaving the EU without a deal on determining which law to apply when dealing with a dispute ie the applicable law (also known as governing law). The key UK regulation dealing with no deal Brexit and applicable law is The Law Applicable to Contractual Obligations and Non-Contractual Obligations (Amendment etc) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019, SI 2019/834 which amends two EU regulations dealing with applicable law so as to bring them within UK law. The two EU regulations are Regulation (EC) 593/2008, Rome I which applies when dealing with contractual obligations and Regulation (EC) 864/2007, Rome II which applies when dealing with non-contractual obligations. The EU Member States apply these EU regulations irrespective of the countries involved in the dispute as there is no requirement for reciprocity. As a consequence, if the UK leaves the EU with no deal, each EU Member State will continue to apply both regulations in relation to the UK.

For more general information on applicable law and Brexit, see Practice Note: Brexit—applicable law.

Determining applicable law in EU Member States

Prior to exit day

Prior to exit day applicable law is determined by the courts of EU Member States by applying the provisions of the following regulations:

  1. Contractual obligations: Regulation (EC) 593/2008, Rome I. For guidance, see: Rome