Retained EU law—flowchart
Retained EU law—flowchart

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

  • What is retained EU law?
  • 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 at the end of the post-Brexit transition period (IP completion day).

For background reading on the transition period, and what it means for retained EU law, see: In the context of Brexit, what is meant by the ‘transition or implementation period’?

What is retained EU law?

Retained EU law is a complex and wide-ranging legal term, defined under EU(W)A 2018, as anything which continues to form part of domestic law on or after IP completion day by virtue of EU(W)A 2018 ss 2, 3, 4, 6(3) or 6(6) (as that body of law is added to or otherwise modified by domestic law from time to time).

It has 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 IP completion day (and to what extent) is a matter of statutory interpretation.

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

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