What is the Brexit news? The U.K. and the EU have agreed to postpone Brexit until Jan. 31, avoiding a “no-deal” Brexit on Oct. 31. The U.K. will also hold a general election Dec. 12.

Key points:

  • New Brexit date. The new Brexit deadline is Jan. 31, 2020. U.K. nationals living in the EU and EU nationals living in the U.K. will retain their rights to live and work in their host countries until then.
  • Flexible withdrawal date. If the U.K. and EU parliaments ratify a withdrawal agreement before Jan. 31, the U.K. will be able to leave the EU on the first day of the month following ratification. A withdrawal agreement, if approved by the U.K. Parliament, would provide the certainty of a transition period that would retain free movement rights for U.K. and EU nationals until the end of 2020.
  • No-deal Brexit. While a no-deal Brexit later this week has been avoided, it is still a possibility that the U.K. will leave the EU without a deal on Feb. 1.
  • General election. The U.K. will hold a general election on Dec. 12 in an attempt to break the deadlock over Brexit.

Analysis & Comments: While a no-deal Brexit has been temporarily avoided, the status of Brexit remains in flux, and it is unclear whether the U.K. will approve a withdrawal agreement before Jan. 31. If a withdrawal agreement is ratified before January, the U.K. will leave before then. If a withdrawal agreement is not approved, the U.K. will leave the EU without a deal on Feb. 1. To prepare for a potential no-deal Brexit, employees should register under the EU Settlement Scheme, and employers should familiarize themselves with no-deal Brexit contingency plans of European countries.

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