Retained EU law—flowchart
Retained EU law—flowchart

The following Public Law guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Retained EU law—flowchart
  • Retained EU law—flowchart
  • Notes
  • Further reading

Retained EU law is a concept introduced by the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 (EU(W)A 2018) in preparation for Brexit, creating a brand new category of domestic law. It is the collective term given to the body of EU-derived laws the UK plans to preserve and convert into domestic law on the day the UK leaves the EU (exit day).

Retained EU law is a complex and wide-ranging legal term, defined within the EU(W)A 2018, with potential application to thousands of EU-derived laws. However, there is no official list verifying which legislation falls inside or outside scope. Whether a certain EU-derived legal provision, right or obligation is retained in domestic law after exit day (and to what extent) is a matter of statutory interpretation.EU(W)A 2018, s 6(7)

For background reading, see: Retained EU law―a practical guide and What is retained EU law?

Retained EU law—flowchart

The following Flowchart outlines some of the key questions and considerations for determining whether a particular instrument, provision or right etc falls within the definition of retained EU law:

Click here for Retained EU law—flowchart (pdf version)



Step 1—is it within the scope of the definition of retained EU law?

Preserved legislation

EU-derived domestic legislation:

EU(W)A 2018, s 2 preserves EU-derived domestic legislation, ie UK legislation implementing EU obligations (eg UK regulations implementing EU directives) as it has effect in domestic law immediately before exit day: EU(W)A 2018, s 2

  1. domestic legislation made under ECA 1972, s 2(2) or Sch 2 to implement EU law

  2. other domestic legislation passed for the purpose of imp