Baker McKenzie’s Employment & Immigration teams have looked at the people implications of Brexit, comparing the situation under the Withdrawal Agreement with what is likely to happen in a no-deal scenario. In summary:

  • Little change is expected to UK employment rights on 29 March 2019 whether or not the draft Withdrawal Agreement is ratified.
  • A ‘No-deal’ scenario is likely to have an immediate impact on employee mobility, data protection and European Works Councils but not on employment rights more generally.
  • In a ‘No-deal’ scenario, EU citizens in the UK should still be able to apply to remain in the UK using the Settled Worker Scheme but it is unclear whether UK nationals working in the EU will benefit from similar protection.
  • If the Withdrawal Agreement is ratified there will be a transition period during which all EU employment law will continue to apply.
  • Despite long term scope for future watering-down or dismantling of EU-derived worker rights, this is not the current UK government’s stated intention and any future trading agreement may involve some form of continuing commitment to shared employment standards.

Our full analysis is available here.



Stephen Ratcliffe is a partner in Baker McKenzie's Employment and Benefits practice in London. He has more than 14 years of legal experience and was recognized as an "Associate to Watch" by Chambers & Partners in 2014, 2015 and 2016 before his promotion to partnership. Stephen has been described as "very precise, technically excellent, but also very practical."


Tony Haque is a senior associate with over 20 years' experience advising in all areas of UK immigration and nationality work, and related European Union law. He is a member of Baker McKenzie’s Global Labor Employment and Employee Benefits Practice Group, where he advises on related corporate, tax and labor law issues, and leads the Firm's Global Immigration & Mobility department in London. Tony is an appointed member of the Law Society's Immigration Law Committee which provides expert guidance to practitioners and seeks to influence the direction of policy. He is recognized as a leader in his field by all of the main UK legal directories including Chambers & Partners, Legal 500, Legal Experts, Global Counsel 3000 and A Who’s Who of Corporate Immigration Lawyers.

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