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The Government has brought forward a motion for debate on the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union for debate on Friday 29 March 2019.

This motion, if adopted as a resolution, does not meet the second of the four prerequisites for ratifying the Withdrawal Agreement set out in section 13(1)(b) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018.

However, the Government has brought it forward for the purposes of meeting the conditional requirement in the European Council’s decision to extend Article 50 of Friday 22 March 2019. If adopted as a resolution, the intention is that Article 50(3)’s 2-year period would be extended to 22 May instead of 12 April.

This briefing note sets out the legal implications of this motion, and places in its broader context of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.

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