High Court legal challenge to Brexit starts today

Published:  13 Oct at 6 PM
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British expats all over the EU will be watching the proceeds of the first legal challenge to Theresa May’s arbitrary triggering of Article 50 next March.

The lawsuit is based on the widespread belief that a parliamentary debate and vote is needed before May can push the button to start EU divorce proceedings. Many UK citizens as well as expats believe the majority may well have voted to leave the EU, but had not voted for massive damage to the UK economy via the hard Brexit envisaged by the PM.

Government lawyers are expected to argue Theresa May is fully and legally entitled to make use of the so-called ‘royal prerogative’ to launch Article 50 without prior approval from Parliament. The campaigners’ stance is that the illegality of the action would undermine Parliament’s sovereignty as the only authority empowered to authorise the move.

Investment fund manager and London resident Gina Miller is bringing the lead case, supported by a large group of ‘concerned citizens’ including Dier dos Santos, the first to lodge a legal challenge against Brexit. Lawyers for the plaintiffs will argue that both houses of Parliament must scrutinise the legality of the Brexit process as it’s being put forward as well as the illegal use of the archaic ‘royal prerogative’.

The legal argument being used is based on the European Communities Act 1972, which brought EU law under the umbrella of British law and gives the power to repeal the act and its established rights solely to Parliament itself, meaning the necessary new laws must be approved by both houses. Triggering Article 50 without parliamentary agreement would be a breach of the original legislation.

Government lawyers are taking the hard line, stating there must be no attempts to stay in the union, none to remain before the official cut-off takes place and no second referendum. Also involved in the lawsuit are UK expat members of the Fair Deal for Expats group as well as EU expats living in the UK and concerned about their futures.

Another supporting group, AB Parties, is representing a large number of everyday, vulnerable people and their children, whose human rights are at stake should a hard Brexit take place. The initial legal action is expected to be referred to appeal at the Supreme Court, with the action being given top priority and heard before the end of this year.
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