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Brexit Support from Dorset Chamber

Financial Services

Dorset is home to many businesses working in Financial Services, including some major international companies. The sector provides jobs for nearly 15,000 people in Dorset and generates about £1.6billion per year, according to official figures. Financial Services include investment banks, insurance companies, asset management firms, tax specialists and those who deal with money matters for businesses, organisations or individuals such as accountants and advisors. If you are a business of this kind, you may well already have plans in place for a no-deal Brexit. The advice below may be of use as a reminder or if you are still making preparations.

You need to know:

You may be affected by a no-deal Brexit if you provide financial services or have EU based customers.

This may also apply if you are marketing financial products in the EU, using intermediaries to distribute products, have agents there or outsource to the EU. The Government and financial services regulators say that they are taking steps to minimise any disruption from a no-deal Brexit. Part of this includes ensuring that the same laws and regulations apply for financial services before and after Brexit in the UK although there are likely to be some changes reflecting the UK’s new status outside of the EU. Its provisions include allowing financial service providers from the EU to carry on business in the UK for a period after Brexit. It has set up a scheme called the ‘Temporary Permissions Regime’ (TPR) to minimise disruption and give EU businesses time to gain the necessary regulatory permissions to carry on operating in the UK and with UK firms.

If you operate under the so-called ‘passporting’ scheme or directly under EU legislation you are likely to be among those affected by a no-deal Brexit.

‘Passporting’ allows firms to do business in another EU country based on authorisation in their home country. Firms in the UK will no longer have access to this scheme under a no-deal Brexit. However,some individual EU countries are putting temporary measures in place to allow business to continue. It is worth checking local laws and regulatory criteria in these countries to ensure you can continue in the same way or have to make some changes. You may need to speak to the appropriate regulatory body to gain approval or take legal advice.

If you employ people from the EU they will be able to stay until December 31, 2020.

They and their families will still be able to work, rent places to live and use services in the UK. However, they must apply to the Government’s EU Settlement Scheme to ensure they can stay after December 2020. If there is a deal, this date may change. It is free to apply for this status and applications are open now. People from the Republic of Ireland, which is part of the EU, will be able to work as usual in the UK.

If you want to employ people from the EU after Brexit, they will be able to apply to stay for 36 months – three years – on a temporary basis.

They will be able to stay under the European Temporary Leave to Remain (Euro TLR) scheme. After this runs out they will have to apply to stay permanently under Government immigration rules yet to be finalised although due to be introduced in January 2021. It likely this will be based on a points-based immigration system, including the need to have lived in the UK for five years although this will be confirmed at a later date. Other criteria may include skills and salary levels.

If you have UK employees working in the EU, check their employment and residency requirements.

They may not be able to enter or work in some countries but generally, most nations are putting measures in place to allow them to stay on a temporary basis while they apply for residency. The time varies from country to country. There may also be a need to pay social security contributions and register for local healthcare although this may change from country to country. Other checks to make include changes to mobile phone charges and insurance. Your staff may also need an international driving permit to drive in the EU unless they get an EU licence.

If we leave with no deal on October 31 the Government says it will still allow personal data to flow from the UK to the EU.

This may help your business if you have data centres abroad, transfer a lot of personal data or provide digital services for customers in the EU. It is not totally clear as yet whether the EU will allow data to go from its countries to the UK in the same way. It is worth checking with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for latest updates.

If your business deals with EU businesses or EU customers you may notice some changes.

You will still be able to send or pay in Euros but the cost and timescales involved may change depending on your provider’s arrangements. The same applies for using credit or debit cards. Keep customers and staff informed. The FCA says that it expects firms to act in the best interest of their customers.

Immediate actions:

NOW: Find out exactly how your business and employees will be able to work in the EU

NEXT: Talk to staff from the EU about their settlement status and give help if required

NOTE: Visit the FCA, ICO and Government website for the latest updates

Check out

Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)

Official Government advice

Settlement scheme

Temporary Leave to Remain

Information Commissioner’s Office

British Chambers of Commerce