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Lords EU exit regulations: 20 February

21 February 2019

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The House of Lords examined 14 statutory instruments preparing for Brexit on Wednesday 20 February.

A statutory instrument (SI), a type of secondary legislation, is a law created under powers given by an Act of Parliament. It is used to fill in the details of Acts (primary legislation).

The proposed SIs make changes to laws on:

1. Construction products
2. Public procurement, including in the field of defence and security
4. Cross-border mediation
5. Road vehicle emissions, drivers hours and insurance
6. Marine equipment
7. Aquatic animal and plant health and alien species
8. Equine identification
9. Fertilisers

Some of the SIs were considered in Grand Committee, a room outside the Lords chamber. In Grand Committee, any member can take part but no votes can take place.

The Brexit SIs under examination on Wednesday 20 February were all made under the EU (Withdrawal) Act 2018, and are changes to the law to be made in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a withdrawal agreement.

In addition to the EU Exit SIs, the House also debated three other SIs. 

All these SIs are made under the draft affirmative procedure, meaning they need to be approved by Parliament before they can be made (signed into law) and brought into effect as law. Draft affirmative SIs can be stopped if either House votes against the government's motion calling for the SI to be approved.

Motion against the regulations

Baroness Randerson (Liberal Democrat), proposed a regret motion against the regulation on compulsory motor insurance. If agreed to, this motion would not have stopped the regulations, but would have provided an opportunity for the House to put on record its regret that residents of the UK could be denied access to justice when injured abroad, having to make claims for compensation in the country where the injury occurred, rather than being able to appoint a claims representative in the UK.

After a short debate this regret motion was withdrawn without a vote.

Lord Adonis (Labour), proposed a motion to decline to approve the regulation on marine equipment. If agreed to, this motion would have stopped the regulation from passing.

After a short debate this motion was withdrawn without a vote.

Lords scrutiny

The House of Lords Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee (SLSC) examines every SI, including all EU Exit SIs. It publishes reports drawing members' attention to SIs.

 Further information

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