The British government has identified 3,745 UK laws and binding judgements that were based on EU regulations or Directives. To address this, it has proposed the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill – commonly known as REUL – which will give ministers the ability to rip up these laws without first requiring Parliamentary approval.
Brexiteers and Europhiles alike have huge concerns about granting Henry VIII powers to ministers – named with reference to the king’s supposed preference for legislating directly by proclamation rather than through Parliament. As such, an unlikely grouping of parliamentarians from right across the political spectrum – orchestrated by Stella Creasey MP and David Davis MP – have come together to ask questions of government around the most important of these laws and judgements.
But reviewing 3,475 pieces of legislation is a HUGE undertaking. And their bandwidth (and expertise in the field of pensions) is LIMITED.
This is where you come in.
If you are reading this you probably qualify – like me – as a proud pensions nerd. I’m asking for your view on the 39 laws and judgements that pertain to private pensions and pensions protection. Many of these could be pretty inconsequential. But some might be seriously important. The Hampshire judgement? Yeah, that sort of thing.
If we can use our collective knowledge and experience to reduce the probability that a minister ‘accidentally’ changes something by edict which then has big knock-on effects in our field this sounds like a good deed and public service. Big changes should get Parliamentary scrutiny.
Download the spreadsheet:
What can I do?!?
Look at the list (available for download here) and score them 0-10 (0=no-one would notice it go; 10=this would have big consequences). It’s fine to leave blanks.
If your feel inclined, you can even write a comment to explain the impact/ importance of scrapping the law/ judgement.
Send a copy of your (saved) completed list to firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday 15th February (earlier if you can) so that I can amalgamate responses and feed them back to parliamentarians.
Your identity and individual responses will not be shared unless you specifically indicate that you are happy for this to occur.
What will be done with the responses?
This is all to better-inform Parliamentarians. They have the opportunity – prior to the passage of the Bill – to ask questions to the government about their intentions related to specific pieces of legislation that might be scrapped or amended by edict. These questions can help avoid accidents.
Interesting project, but I am wondering whether there may be some errors in methodology which mean that the wrong regulations are being captured.
It looks like Toby may have gone through EU pensions legislation (in particular the IORP directives, but some others) and identified measures which found their way in some form into domestic legislation. Whilst that’s not an unreasonable assumption, that doesn’t appear to me (as a non-lawyer) what the Retained EU Law Bill does when revoking legislation.
Instead, as section 1 of the Bill makes clear, it revokes legislation which is ether direct (i.e. regulations) or “was made under section 2(2) of, or paragraph 1A of Schedule 2 to, the European Communities Act 1972 [the ECA]”.
So, for instance the SIP requirements in SI 2018/988 were not made under the ECA. You can tell from https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2018/988/pdfs/uksi_20180988_en.pdf – no mention of the ECA in the list of powers at the top.
Likewise 2015/742 [mistyped as 274] on appropriate advice isn’t made under the Act.
Nor does SI 2018/233 on cost, charge and investment disclosure.
And I’m a bit surprised to see so much primary legislation referenced, such as the 2015 and 2017 Acts which I understood to have purely domestic origins – although some parts of the 2004 Acts – e.g. s249A and s249B on system of governance and internal controls – do derive from EU law.
So unless I’ve completely misunderstood – which may be the case – the list might need a bit rework. I’d appreciate confirmation from a real lawyer!
I fear that it won’t matter what those of us who care think, the whole purpose of BREXIT and therefore this piece of legislation, was to protect/enhance the rich and powerful at the expense of us poor people. For instance, when the BREXIT process started the EU were discussing were discussing legislation banning EU citizens from using tax havens. Imagine how our current government would have liked that! I really can’t imagine the current government listening to anything that isn’t just a complete scraping anything the EU Parliament originally decided. After all, no Brits were involved in those decisions, were they? So, good luck!
In my cynical heart I don’t disagree with you…!
In my mind, I’m afraid I do.
Can we turn the clock back to the days of David Cameron? No: I wasn’t impressed by his political efforts in flouncing off because he was unable to trounce Mrs Thatcher in dealing with the EU. Nevertheless he was in on the initiation of the EU actions regarding their planned restrictions on tax havens. As you may know the EU were concerned at the number of Europeans taking a day-cruise to the Channel Islands carrying suitcases full of money. As you may also recall, that after DC had resigned, the investigative journalists found his Dad’s name on the client lists of one renowned business in Panama City.
I often wonder how much of an authority the 17m who voted Leave each were on the the workings of the EU. The right-wing Press were keen (possibly for their Proprietors) and a few successful tradesmen (for their own reasons). The Parliamentary banner-carriers e.g. David Davies, Sir David Frost, where are they now? Boris Johnson (ever the opportunist) immediately jumped astride the ‘tiger’ only to find that he can never dismount.
Believe it or not (and it takes some doing) that a group of Parliamentary Tories recently handed in a petition to the Prime Minister urging him to close down the tax havens because of the loss to the UK Revenue.