Civil service plans for a hard Brexit reveal the profound impact it will have on all our lives, write Oliver Wright and Henry Zeffman
In dry, impenetrable Whitehallese language the civil service today lays out the implications of a no-deal Brexit on individuals, businesses and government.
Despite their neutral tone, the two dozen or so “no-deal planning notices” do not mask the profound effect such a scenario would have on everyone living in Britain — and arguably the continent as well.
From selling a car, to getting on a plane to Paris, to buying or selling any kind of good or service, life will not be the same in a very profound way.
Anyone wanting to travel into the European Union must have six months left before their passport expires or risk being turned back at the border. In addition the amount of time that British citizens will be allowed to stay in an EU country will be limited to three months.
Currently UK driving licences are valid in the EU. In a no-deal scenario, they would no longer be valid in themselves. Instead, Britons could need to obtain an International Driving Permit (IDP), which is an additional document. Depending on the country, Britons who move to the continent for a prolonged period might be required to take a new driving test there.
Surcharge-free roaming will no longer be guaranteed in the event of a no-deal Brexit. This might affect the amount of calls that you can make, texts you can send and data you can consume, including applying limits that are less than the amount available in your bundle when you are in the UK. The government is proposing to cap any data charges at £45 a month.
HMRC has written to 145,000 companies that export to the EU but not to the rest of the world. The letter warns them that they will have to comply with all new excise, VAT and customs procedures after Brexit and advises them to “contact customs agents, freight forwarders and other businesses” who have “services to help you to follow customs rules”.