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Regulatory Compliance/Data protection/ Accounting

Have you considered the following?

Accounting

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Context

UK businesses with a branch operating in the EU will become a third country business in the event of a no deal which means that your business will need to comply with specific accounting and reporting requirements in each country.

Resources and information

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/accounting-if-theres-no-brexit-deal

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/auditing-if-theres-no-brexit-deal



Competition policy and state aid

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Context

After leaving the EU the role of policing and ensuring fair competition in UK markets (including state aid) will fully transfer to British regulators and agencies. This could result in differences to the current approach – for instance on approvals for mergers and acquisitions.

Resources and information

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has published a notice on its role after Brexit.
CMA's role after Brexit

And another for the specific case of a ‘no-deal’ exit from the EU.
Effects of a 'no deal' EU Exit on the functions of the CMA

If there is no Brexit withdrawal agreement before March 2019, the government has developed a ‘no deal’ competition Statutory Instrument (SI):


Mergers: If the European Commission has issued a decision on or before the day the UK leaves the EU (unless the decision is annulled, in full or in part, following an appeal), the UK has no jurisdiction. UK-EU mergers will now occur via private contracts, not through the EU regime. Seek legal advice on individual ongoing merger cases.

State aid: The government is expected to pass secondary legislation which will transpose EU state aid rules into UK law and provide for the CMA to take on its new state aid role, following which they will publish further details on how this function will operate.

Antitrust: After the UK’s exit from the EU, the CMA will no longer have jurisdiction to apply anti-competitive agreements including cartels or on abuse of dominance.

The CMA published a consultation on their functions, relating to mergers, antitrust and consumer protection processes, in a no deal scenario: CMA Consultation: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/effects-of-a-no-deal-eu-exit-on-the-functions-of-the-cma

Data protection, GDPR, and mobile roaming

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Context

Your business may be affected by changes to regulations on personal data transfers and mobile roaming.

  • In the event of a no deal, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport do not expect the European Commission to have made adequacy decisions regarding the UK at the point of exit. Therefore, in order to continue the legal transfer of personal data from the EEA to the UK, alternative transfer mechanisms will need to be in place.
  • Rules governing the transfer of personal data from the EEA to the UK will require businesses to obtain additional safeguards (such as standard contractual clauses)
  • Rules governing the transfer of personal data from the UK to the EEA will remain similar to the existing status quo
  • UK businesses providing goods or services or tracking customer behaviour in EU/EEA without an established presence in an EU member state may need to appoint a European representative
  • UK businesses processing personal data across borders may need to find a lead supervisory authority in the EEA
  • Surcharge-free mobile roaming when travelling to the EU is no longer guaranteed
  • Traders from UK, EU and 3rd countries can offer different terms to UK customers compared to EU customers


Resources and Information

The Government have published guidance for using personal data after Brexit:https://www.gov.uk/guidance/using-personal-data-after-brexit

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has published a checklist of six steps that businesses can take now to start preparing for data protection compliance if the UK leaves the EU without a deal: https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisations/documents/2553958/leaving-the-eu-six-steps-to-take.pdf

More detailed information on this can be found here: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-and-brexit/data-protection-if-there-s-no-brexit-deal/

eCommerce

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Context

UK companies retailing to consumers or trading ‘information and data services’ (e.g. video sharing, social media platforms and internet service providers) across the EU would face changes to their regulatory environment in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit.

Your business should consider

Do you know if the EU’s eCommerce Directive is relevant to your business?

Does your business operate any websites with a ‘.eu’ domain name registration?

Resources and information

The Department for Culture Media and Sport has produced official guidance for businesses engaged in contingency planning for Brexit.

eCommerce EU Exit Guidance

This guidance provides businesses with information about the eCommerce Directive and sets out the government's approach to contingency planning for a ‘no-deal’ scenario. In this case, although there would be continuity in some areas there would be also be changes – such as the Directive's country of origin principle, which UK companies would cease to benefit from.
eCommerce EU Exit Guidance

Guidance on registering or renewing .eu domain names

DCMS has produced official guidance for companies with existing domain name registrations under ‘.eu’ or an interest in registering a domain name under ‘.eu’ in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit.
Guidance on '.eu' top domain names

Product Safety and Metrology

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If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, your business may need to consider the following changes relating to product safety and metrology:

  • New labelling or notification requirements for products being placed on the UK for the first time
  • A new UK Conformity Assessed marking (“UKCA”) for products to be placed on the UK market
  • New legal duties for UK businesses which bring products into the UK from an EEA member state


Resources and information

Guidance on amended legislation for businesses and regulators that will apply if the UK leaves the EU on Exit Day without a deal can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-product-safety-and-metrology-guidance-in-a-no-deal-scenario

Regulations and standards

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In the event of a ‘no deal’, businesses will have to follow new regulations and standards for trading goods and products across the EU

  • The majority of goods that meet EU regulatory requirements will continue to be recognised as valid for sale on the UK market for a time limited period after exit
  • The EU will cease to recognise regulatory compliance activity carried out in the UK as valid for goods being placed on the EU market
  • Goods already on the EU-27 market will be unaffected – i.e. goods sold or subject to offer
  • Products currently requiring a CE marking will continue to require it for sale in the EU
  • After exit, products assessed against UK rules by a UK ‘approved body’ will need the UKCA marking
  • Goods assessed by a UK body need to be re-assessed by an EU-recognised body to be sold in the EU, or manufacturers can transfer certifications to an EU body pre-exit.
  • The British Standards Institution (BSI) has published information about standards if there is a no deal https://www.bsigroup.com/en-GB/about-bsi/uk-national-standards-body/standards-policy-on-the-uk-leaving-the-eu/ For the setting of standards, BSI state their membership of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) is unaffected by Brexit, and following campaigning by the BCC and other business groups, they will seek to remain members of the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) and European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC) to ensure continuity.


Resources and information

The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy have published guidance across the following areas:

Regulations and standards after Brexit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/regulations-and-standards-after-brexit

Regulatory requirements for manufactured goods after Brexit:https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/manufactured-goods-regulatory-requirements-after-brexit

There are UK Government Brexit technical notices on regulation for specific sectors. These can be found on our checklist here: https://www.britishchambers.org.uk/page/brexit/business-brexit-checklist/sectors

For cross-cutting regulatory issues, technical notices can be found here:https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/how-to-prepare-if-the-uk-leaves-the-eu-with-no-deal