The Government will introduce a “Great Repeal Bill” to Parliament that aims to end the authority of European law in Britain from the very first moment the country has left the EU.
The historic proposal will scrap the European Communities Act, absorbing parts into UK law while giving ministers powers to ditch other elements they want rid of.
Prime Minister Theresa May and Brexit Secretary David Davis plan to introduce the Bill as early as the spring, with its passage through Parliament set to take place in parallel to withdrawal negotiations in Brussels.
The announcement is the centrepiece of the first day of Conservative Conference, with Mr Davis set to tell the party faithful the change will mean “power and authority” returned to the UK.
But it also sets the scene for a major clash in Parliament, as the Government will have to pass the Bill through a House of Lords where the Tories are in a minority and even some Conservative peers suggest they may try and delay Brexit legislation.
Ms May is expected to implement Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, formally triggering Brexit talks, early in 2017. That starts a two-year countdown in which a withdrawal deal must be struck before the UK departs the EU.
Mr Davis will say: "As we prepare for those negotiations in Europe, we also need to prepare for the impact of Brexit on domestic law. It’s very simple. At the moment we leave, Britain must be back in control. And that means EU law must cease to apply.
"To ensure continuity, we will take a simple approach. EU law will be transposed into domestic law, wherever practical, on exit day. It will be for elected politicians here to make the changes to reflect the outcome of our negotiation and our exit.
"That is what people voted for - power and authority residing once again with the sovereign institutions of our own country."
The Great Repeal Bill will, on day one of Brexit, end the authority of EU law by abolishing the 1972 European Communities Act - the legislation which means all law formed in Europe has primacy in the UK.
Currently if there is a clash between Parliament and EU law, the European Court of Justice decides on the matter and has in the past delivered judgments binding on the UK. The Government’s planned Bill will end ECJ jurisdiction in Britain.
At the same time, the new Bill will convert existing EU law into domestic law, while allowing Parliament to amend or repeal any other EU law after scrutiny and debate.
The Bill will also include powers for ministers to make some changes by secondary legislation, which is not voted on by the Commons in the same way a piece of primary legislation would be. Ministers already have such powers to implement parts of EU law. Officials say the powers are necessary to give the Government flexibility and to take account of the negotiations with the EU as they proceed.
What experts have said about Brexit
What experts have said about Brexit
1/11 Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond
The Chancellor claims London can still be a world financial hub despite Brexit “One of Britain’s great strengths is the ability to offer and aggregate all of the services the global financial services industry needs” “This has not changed as a result of the EU referendum and I will do everything I can to ensure the City of London retains its position as the world’s leading international financial centre.”
2/11 Yanis Varoufakis
Greece's former finance minister compared the UK relations with the EU bloc with a well-known song by the Eagles: “You can check out any time you like, as the Hotel California song says, but you can't really leave. The proof is Theresa May has not even dared to trigger Article 50. It's like Harrison Ford going into Indiana Jones' castle and the path behind him fragmenting. You can get in, but getting out is not at all clear”
3/11 Michael O’Leary
Ryanair boss says UK will be ‘screwed’ by EU in Brexit trade deals: “I have no faith in the politicians in London going on about how ‘the world will want to trade with us’. The world will want to screw you – that's what happens in trade talks,” he said. “They have no interest in giving the UK a deal on trade”
4/11 Tim Martin
JD Wetherspoon's chairman has said claims that the UK would see serious economic consequences from a Brexit vote were "lurid" and wrong: “We were told it would be Armageddon from the OECD, from the IMF, David Cameron, the chancellor and President Obama who were predicting locusts in the fields and tidal waves in the North Sea"
5/11 Mark Carney
Governor of Bank of England is 'serene' about Bank of England's Brexit stance: “I am absolutely serene about the … judgments made both by the MPC and the FPC”
6/11 Christine Lagarde
IMF chief urges quick Brexit to reduce economic uncertainty: “We want to see clarity sooner rather than later because we think that a lack of clarity feeds uncertainty, which itself undermines investment appetites and decision making”
7/11 Inga Beale
Lloyd’s chief executive says Brexit is a major issue: "Clearly the UK's referendum on its EU membership is a major issue for us to deal with and we are now focusing our attention on having in place the plans that will ensure Lloyd's continues trading across Europe”
8/11 Colm Kelleher
President of US bank Morgan Stanley says City of London ‘will suffer’ as result of the EU referendum: “I do believe, and I said prior to the referendum, that the City of London will suffer as result of Brexit. The issue is how much”
9/11 Richard Branson
Virgin founder believes we've lost a THIRD of our value because of Brexit and cancelled a deal worth 3,000 jobs: We're not any worse than anybody else, but I suspect we've lost a third of our value which is dreadful for people in the workplace.' He continued: "We were about to do a very big deal, we cancelled that deal, that would have involved 3,000 jobs, and that’s happening all over the country"
10/11 Barack Obama
US President believes Britain was wrong to vote to leave the EU: "It is absolutely true that I believed pre-Brexit vote and continue to believe post-Brexit vote that the world benefited enormously from the United Kingdom's participation in the EU. We are fully supportive of a process that is as little disruptive as possible so that people around the world can continue to benefit from economic growth"
11/11 Kristin Forbes
American economist and an external member of the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England argues that the economy had been “less stormy than many expected” following the shock referendum result: “For now…the economy is experiencing some chop, but no tsunami. The adverse winds could quickly pick up – and merit a stronger policy response. But recently they have shifted to a more favourable direction”
But Mr Davis will dismiss any suggestion that ministers intend to use Brexit to ditch workers' right and in his speech will seek to highlight areas, including annual and parental leave, where UK law goes further than minimum EU standards.
He will say: "To those who are trying to frighten British workers, saying ‘when we leave, employment rights will be eroded’, I say firmly and unequivocally ‘no they won’t’.”Reuse content