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This timeline covers key events, cases and developments that will lead the United Kingdom towards exiting the European Union. For more information on Brexit, visit our dedicated topic hub.


  • Case
  • Development
  • General
  • Regulation
  • Legislation
29 March 2019
UK leaves the EU

The UK is expected to leave the EU on 29 March 2019, in the absence of an agreed extension to the notice period.

By October 2018
Negotiations to be concluded

The negotiations are expected to be concluded to allow time for approval of the withdrawal agreement by the European Council, the European Parliament and the UK Parliament.

24 September 2017
German elections

Federal elections take place in Germany.

21 June 2017
State opening of Parliament

The Queen's Speech outlines the Government's legislative and policy agenda for the Parliamentary session 2017-2019. Eight Bills relate to Brexit, including the Repeal Bill, the Trade Bill, the Customs Bill and the Immigration Bill.

19 June 2017
Negotiations begin

Formal negotiations on the UK's withdrawal from the EU begin. The initial focus will be on citizens' rights, a financial settlement and other separation issues (such as protection of the Good Friday Agreement and maintenance of the Common Travel Area).  The UK's future trade relationship with the EU will be discussed later. There will be one week of negotiations every month.

8 June 2017
UK General Election

MPs approved a motion to call a UK general election by 522 votes to 13. The election takes place on 8 June 2017.

8 May onwards
Election manifestos

The general election campaign gets underway, with the parties publishing their manifestos.

7 May 2017
French presidential election (second round of voting)
3 May 2017
Parliament is dissolved

The dissolution of Parliament takes place 25 working days before the election.



29 April 2017
Summit of the EU 27

Summit of the EU 27, at which the negotiating guidelines are adopted.

31 March 2017
EU negotiation guidelines

The President of the European Council publishes draft negotiation guidelines for the EU 27 (the EU members excluding the UK).

30 March 2017
Great Repeal Bill

A white paper, giving details of the Bill, is published.


29 March 2017
Triggering of Brexit

Article 50 notice is given, triggering Brexit. The notice period is two years.

25 March 2017
Treaty of Rome

60th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Rome, which led to the founding of the EEC.

16 March 2017
European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act

The Bill receives Royal Assent and becomes an Act, giving the Government the legal power to formally begin the Brexit process by notifying the European Council of the UK's intention to leave the EU.

15 March 2017
Dutch General Election
13 March 2017
European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill

Parliament passes the Bill, which will give the Government authority to give notice to the EU under Article 50.

8 February 2017
The European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill

Third reading in the House of Commons; Bill passed by 494 votes to 122. It now moves to the House of Lords.

2 February 2017
Brexit white paper

The Government publishes its white paper on the UK's exit from and new partnership with the EU, formally setting out its strategy for leaving the EU.


1 February 2017
The European Union (Notification of Withdrawal Bill)

The Bill is passed in the House of Commons by 498 votes to 114. It will now move on to the committee stage in the House of Commons, then the House of Lords.


26 January 2017
The European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill

The Government publishes the draft legislation that will allow the UK to start the process of leaving the EU. The European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill has been produced after the Supreme Court ruled legislation is necessary.


24 January 2017
Supreme Court ruling

Supreme Court rules that Government cannot trigger Article 50 without an Act of Parliament but does not have to consult the devolved legislatures in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.



17 January 2017
The Government's negotiating objectives for exiting the EU

Theresa May makes a speech ruling out remaining in the single market or the customs union but states that Parliament will have a vote on any Brexit deal.

9 December 2016
GDPR and Brexit

Bond Dickinson holds an event on data protection: GDPR, Brexit and emerging issues.

5-8 December 2016
Government appeals against High Court decision

The Government's appeal against High Court decision heard by Supreme Court.


4 November
High Court decision on Article 50

High Court rules that Government cannot trigger Article 50 without being authorised by Parliament.



21 October 2016
South West World Trade Summit

Bond Dickinson takes part in the inaugural South West World Trade Summit, organised by the Institute of Export.


The event, held in Taunton, aimed to provide advice and guidance to business leaders in the region to help them prosper in international trade following Brexit.


13,17,18 October 2016
Article 50 judicial review

High Court hears Article 50 judical review case.


2 October 2016
Conservative Party Conference 2016

Theresa May announces that Article 50 will be triggered before the end of March 2017 and the Queen's Speech will include a Great Repeal Bill to repeal the European Communities Act 1972.


13 July 2016
Theresa May becomes Prime Minister

Theresa May becomes the second female Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. 

24 June 2016
Referendum result and resignation of David Cameron

Result is declared: 51.9% vote to leave, 48.1% vote to remain. Prime Minister David Cameron resigns.


23 June 2016
EU referendum takes place