No Deal Expat Rights Bombshell For Johnson

Tory leadership front runner Boris Johnson has been warned millions of British expats in Europe are entitled to sue the government if they lose their rights to live and work due to a no-deal Brexit.

Alberto Costa, a senior Conservative back-bencher, issued the warning in a letter to Johnson.

Costa resigned from the government over this issue earlier this year and has tirelessly campaigned for the rights of British expats in Europe as leader of a cross party group in Westminster.

Although Johnson has agreed to safeguard the rights of EU expats if Britain leaves the bloc in a no-deal Brexit, EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier has refused to offer the same terms to British expats.

UK has no power to protect expats

Instead, he told Costa and a team of MPs who travelled to Brussels to meet him over the weekend that the best way to protect the rights of British expats would be for Britain to accept the deal already on the table.

“Whatever the outcome of Brexit, we must protect the rights of the five million citizens affected by Britain’s exit from the European Union,” said Costa after the meeting.

“Mr Barnier reiterated that the best way to do that is through the withdrawal agreement.

“In the event of no-deal the United Kingdom parliament can take measures to protect EU nationals in the UK, but we do not have powers to pass legislation extraterritorially, in other words within the EU, to protect our own citizens.”

Around 1.3 million British expats live in the EU, mostly in Spain, France and the Republic of Ireland.

Rights terminated overnight

Costa wants UK to make agreements with Eu states to protect expat rights.

“If Britain chooses to exit without an agreement in place, it would be terminating the rights of British citizens overnight,” said Costa before leaving for Brussels.

“I want to understand from Michel Barnier what his position is in carving out citizens’ rights, why he has said, thus far, no to that and if he continues to say no, we want to understand what authority he has if any. He can encourage member states to enter into in emergency bilateral agreements with the UK.”

Johnson has yet to respond to Costa’s claims.

Stay Connected

Latest News

Economic Impact Payments for US Expats

The US government is paying millions of dollars into the bank accounts of American expats as coronavirus economic impact payments and this guide will...

HMRC Explained

HMRC is short for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs. The HMRC collects the taxes and customs duties that the British government spends...

Difference Between Residence and Domicile

For British expats, their residence and domicile determine how much tax they are likely to pay, both in the country where they...

QROPS, Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme

QROPS is a type of pensions that were designed to cater for the needs of British pension holders that move out of...

Where Do British Expats Live?

More than 5.5 million people from Britain live overseas and leave the country at a rate of around 2,000 a week.

Living In The Philippines, A Guide for Expats

Brilliant weather, a low cost of living and friendly, English speaking people makes The Philippines a popular destination for British expats.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here