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Brexit Update: UK’s Chaotic Departure from EU Still on Table

Thomas Steppe

Following the European Union (EU) Summit on March 21, EU heads of state reviewed the UK’s request to extend Brexit’s original date of March 29, 2019 to June 30, 2019. After extensive debate, the EU offered the UK two options:

  • An extension of the Brexit date until May 22, subject to the condition that the Withdrawal Agreement between the EU and the UK government is approved by the UK House of Commons on a third vote to be held later this week; or
  • If the Withdrawal Agreement is not approved by the House of Commons this week, an extension of the Brexit date will be granted until April 12, subject to no conditions.

If the Withdrawal Agreement is not approved for the third time, the UK government will need to reach a consensus on the next steps. Possible decisions include: 

  • Accept the outcome of a no-deal Brexit on April 12;
  • Exit the EU under alternative arrangements;
  • Request the EU for another extension of the Brexit date; or
  • Revoke Article 50, ultimately deciding not to leave the EU (however, this seems unlikely given Prime Minister May’s vow to deliver Brexit).

For now, Vertex joins others in monitoring Brexit developments and helping our customers prepare for possible outcomes. Earlier this month, we updated our value added tax (VAT) determination engine with specific place-of-supply logic for post-Brexit UK transactions to allow companies to test UK VAT transactions. Once there is more clarity on Brexit’s date and conditions, our VAT determination engine will be updated with content reflecting the outcome. We will keep you posted on additional changes as they develop.

Please remember that the Tax Matters provides information for educational purposes, not specific tax or legal advice. Always consult a qualified tax or legal advisor before taking any action based on this information.


About this Contributor

Thomas Steppe Headshot
Thomas Steppe
Global Tax Leader with the Indirect Tax Research

Thomas Steppe is a Global Tax Leader with the Indirect Tax Research department. In his role, he is responsible for the global VAT research content for Vertex’s tax technology solutions. Thomas has more than 12 years of experience in VAT, both in consulting and as an in-house VAT manager, and holds a Master’s Degree in accountancy and applied economics.

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