The Maximum Brexit Delay is Three Months- Or We Elect MEPs

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This is an interesting little circumstance. If we stay in the European Union then of course we’ve got to have elections to elect Members of the European Parliament. We also have to offer up a Commissioner. Obviously, if we’re not going to stay in then we don’t have to do either of those two things.

If we continue to dither then how long can we do so before the necessity of resolving this question comes to ahead? July 1 apparently:

No long Brexit delay without election of British MEPs, says leaked paper
Britain forfeits any extension longer than three months if it does not contest EU elections Brussels will have to terminate the UK’s extended membership of the European Union on 1 July if elections for British MEPs have not been held, a leaked legal document reveals. A three-month delay to Brexit beyond 29 March will not carry any conditions, but anything longer than that requires Britain to have taken part in European parliamentary elections, ambassadors have been told.

EU law does not stand in the way of multiple extensions to the UK’s membership if requested, the document says. But if elections had not been held in May, and the UK subsequently sought to stay on as a member state to avoid a no-deal Brexit, for example, the EU would be bound to reject a request, the document seen by the Guardian says. “No extension should be granted beyond 1 July unless the European parliament elections are held at the mandatory date”, the legal opinion shared among ambassadors on Friday says.

At which point there’s no reason to extend Article 50, is there? For we’re not going to reach any more agreement in 90 days than we’ve got now. So, excellent, out to WTO terms it is on March 29th then. Huzzah.