Category Archives: EU Law

Brexit negotiations: transition period

European Commission
© Andrew Gustar. Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

The Draft Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland from the European Union and Euratom is available in a coloured coded version, highlighting both where progress has been made and areas still to be agreed.

If you are following the withdrawl process you can find other relevant documents here.

Publications from the UK Department for Exiting the European Union are available here.


Help using EUR-Lex

Detail from EUR-Lex website © European Commission

EUR-Lex is the official database for accessing EU law.  Free to use, it is available in 24 languages and includes treaties, legislation, international agreements, preparatory acts, case law and parliamentary questions. It gives direct access to the Official Journal of the European Union.

An e-learning module is available to help you use and get the most out of EUR-Lex.

The module, which takes two hours to complete, can be done as a whole or you can select only the sections that are relevant to you. The module looks at:

  • finding EU law through ‘Quick search’, ‘Advanced search’ and ‘Find results by’ search options on the EUR-Lex homepage
  • discovering ways to edit and refine your searches
  • accessing documents in multiple languages, and finding legal information about documents and legislative procedures
  • accessing the Official Journal, preparatory acts and EU case-law
  • understanding EUR-Lex’s content and structure, including how to form CELEX numbers
  • browsing EU law through the directories of legislation and EuroVoc
  • pointing out the advantages of being a EUR-Lex registered user.

Still having difficulty with EUR-Lex come and see us in the Taylor Library.



The Scottish Parliament and Brexit

Scottish Parliament (2)
© dun-deagh. Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Earlier this month the Scottish Parliament’s Finance and Constitution Committee stated it could not recommend legislative consent to the UK Government’s European Union Withdrawal Bill in its present form. The Committee believes clause 11 of the Bill is incompatible with the devolution settlement.  Their interim report is available here.  A final report will be produced on the Bill prior to the final amending stage in the House of Lords.

The Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe), which provides impartial, factual, information and analysis to Members of the Scottish Parliament, has produced a briefing paper explaining what legislative consent is and its legal and political status.

The Scottish Government has indicated it may introduce its own EU Continuity Bill to prepare Scotland’s laws for Brexit. A guest post on the SPICe spotlight blog, by Professor Sionaidh Douglas-Scott, discussing this possibility is available here.  Guest blog posts, of course, reflect the views of the author not SPICe or the Scottish Parliament.





Eur-Lex Newsletter

eurlexThe latest edition of the EUR-Lex newsletter is now available.  The August edition highlights some improvements made to the site e.g. legislation results lists now include ‘No longer in force’ and ‘Not yet in force’, in addition to ‘In force’, clarifying the legal status of the documents concerned.  They are colour-coded: green – in force; yellow – not yet in force and red – no longer in force.

To keep up-to-date with changes to EUR-Lex you can subscribe to the newsletter. In addition short video tutorials for EUR-Lex are available here.  We have also produced our own short guide.


The abolition of mobile roaming charges and Brexit

© Garry Knight. Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Since 15 June 2017 roaming charges in the EU have been abolished allowing mobile customers to use their network provider’s allowance of minutes, text messages and data throughout the EU and the European Economic Area (EEA) without incurring additional charges.

The abolition of roaming charges will continue to apply in the UK until it leaves the EU.

A new House of Commons Library briefing paper, available here, looks at possible scenarios after Brexit.

The factsheets below, produced by the European Commission, explain the current pre-Brexit situation.

Roaming factsheet: TechnicalroamingfactsheetEN

Roam Like at Home FAQs: RoamLikeatHomeEN

However, as this BBC article explains, customers are still liable for extra charges if they exceed their contractually agreed data usage limits.




Brexit: Agriculture and trade

©B4bees. Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

The outcome of Brexit negotiations will impact on agriculture and trade in agricultural products across the UK.

A House of Commons Library paper looking at the issues is available here.

An earlier briefing paper by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) looking at these issues in Scotland is available here.


Brexit and the fishing industry

Peterhead Harbour
© Stu Smith . Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

The implications of Brexit for the fishing industry are highly uncertain.  Prior to the introduction of a new Fisheries Bill, the House of Commons Library has produced a briefing paper entitled “Brexit: What next for UK fisheries?” on how negotiations with the EU and future UK Government policy may affect fishing in the UK.  It is available here.

An earlier briefing paper by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) called Implications of leaving the EU: Fisheries examines issues for the Scottish sea fishing sector.  It is available here.

Data Roaming Charges Abolished in the EU

Roaming factsheet detail
Factsheet detail © European Commission

As of today, (15th June 2017) data roaming charges for all travellers in the European Union have been abolished, as part of the wider project to create a Digital Single Market. The European Commission has produced a couple of useful factsheets (see links at bottom of article) on what this entails. However, as this BBC article explains, customers are still liable for extra charges if they exceed their contractually agreed data usage limits.

As the BBC article also points out, once article 50 has been fully implemented, it will be the up to a future UK Government to decide as to whether the UK adopts these pricing restrictions or not.

Roaming factsheet: TechnicalroamingfactsheetEN

Roam Like at Home FAQs: RoamLikeatHomeEN


European Investigation Order

EU Flag
©MPDO1605. Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

The European Investigation Order in criminal matters which came in to force on the 22nd of May will simplify the work of judicial authorities when they request evidence located in another EU country. This new system allows EU countries to obtain evidence in other EU countries, for criminal cases that involve more than one country.

“Criminals and terrorists know no borders. Equipping judicial authorities with the European Investigation Order will help them cooperate effectively to fight organised crime, terrorism, drug trafficking and corruption. It will give judicial authorities access to evidence quickly wherever it is in the EU. I call on all Member States to implement it as quickly as possible to improve our common fight against crime and terrorism. In June we will also discuss with Member States solutions to facilitate the collection and exchange of e-evidence. It is time to fully modernise the tools available to judicial authorities to conduct investigations.”

More information is available here