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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P R S T V W Y

A Brexit message from our Managing Partner.

A Brexit message from our Managing Partner.

Tuesday 12th July 2016

The events of 23rd June require no introduction from me nor, I am sure, do you require yet another summary of them. That we witnessed one of the most far-reaching political events of a generation is without any doubt. Just over two weeks on, those events are still unfolding – the pace of news hasn’t abated to any real degree as the major political parties settle into the reality of the outcome.

At this point, the only certainty is we are in a period of great uncertainty. Incredulously to all of us, not least to those of us in the business community, it has become apparent that there was no plan developed to deal with this eventuality. Given the Prime Minister’s resignation we are unlikely to hear of one any time soon, although one hopes Theresa May is formulating at least the basis of one now.

Now is not the time for conjecture as to the legal changes afoot; it is too soon for any lawyer to comment with certainty about what the post-exit legal landscape will look like. That there will be legal change is without doubt – a significant proportion of our body of law draws its origins from the EU, and that will have to be replaced.

We are not going to see a multitude of legal lacunas opening up – the gaps will have to be filled with domestic law and that in itself brings opportunities for the business community. As a community, we should now be considering the legal landscape we want to see, in order that the community can use its collective influence upon policy makers and have input into the changes. Over the coming weeks and months our lawyers will be communicating which areas of law are likely to see change to assist the business community in that process.

Aside from the legal changes that the vote necessitates, there will of course be a commercial impact. Although as I write the markets are rallying and the pound is on the up, economic experts are predicting a recession. Even if we manage to avoid that degree of economic downturn, it is obvious that we are at least going to see a shaky economy for quite some time. As commercial lawyers we have seen some degree of uncertainty for some time now – just as the economy was recovering we felt the impact of the 2014 Scottish referendum, followed by the General Election last year, and since the start of this year, the effects of the referendum. Since the result announcement the press have reported the cessation of talks in certain deals, which we have witnessed directly within our client base.

As a firm, we have been in business for 200 years. Over that time there have been many social, economic and political changes throughout which we have assisted our clients. We are proud of our client base of ambitious businesses, and we share their ambitions – not only for their businesses, but also as business owners ourselves. As far as any of us can in the political and economic climate we are facing, we must adopt a stance of business as usual. Commercially, we as a business community cannot halt our plans and activities while we wait for politicians to guide us through unchartered waters. Commercial sense now can only be doing what is right for our individual businesses and following our business plans, adapting where we must given the new situation and the economic climate we now find ourselves operating in.

As trusted advisors we are standing by, ready to assist. Please don’t hesitate to contact myself or any of the individual lawyers within our team for an informal chat regarding the impact upon your business. We would be delighted to assist you.