How things will look like in the United Kingdom from 31 January 2020 because of Brexit

What has changed

 

1. The UK's passports have changed colour

Blue passports have made a return, more than 30 years after they were replaced by the current burgundy design.

Announcing the change in 2017, then Immigration Minister, Brandon Lewis, praised the return to the "iconic" blue-and-gold design, first used in 1921.

The new colour will be phased in over a number of months, with all new passports issued in blue by the middle of the 2020 year.

Nevertheless, existing burgundy passports will continue to be valid.

 

2. Brexit coins

About three million commemorative 50p Brexit coins bearing the date "31 January" and the inscription: "Peace, prosperity and friendship with all nations", have entered circulation on Friday.

The coin has received a mixed reaction, with some Remain supporters saying they will refuse to accept it.

The government had planned to introduce a similar coin on 31 October, the date Brexit was previously meant to happen.

However, those coins had to be melted down and recycled after the deadline was extended.

 

3. The UK's Brexit department shuts down

The team that handled the UK-EU negotiations and no-deal preparations disbanded on Brexit day.

The Department for Exiting the European Union was set up by former Prime Minister Theresa May in 2016.

For the upcoming talks, the UK's negotiating team will be based in Downing Street.

 

4. Germany won't extradite its citizens to the UK

It won't be possible for some suspected criminals to be brought back to the UK if they flee to Germany.

Germany's constitution does not allow its citizens to be extradited, unless it's to another EU country.

"This exception cannot apply anymore after the UK has left EU," a spokesman from the German Federal Ministry of Justice told BBC News.

It's unclear if the same restrictions will apply to other countries. Slovenia, for example, says the situation is complicated, while the European Commission was unable to provide comment.

The UK Home Office says the European Arrest Warrant will continue to apply during the transition period. That means Germany will be able to extradite non-German citizens.

However, it adds that if a country's laws prevent extradition to the UK it "will be expected to take over the trial or sentence of the person concerned".

 

What has remained the same

 

Because the transition period begins immediately after Brexit, the vast majority of other things remain the same - at least until 31 December 2020 including:

 

1. Travel

UK nationals will still be treated the same as EU nationals during the transition

Flights, boats and trains will operate as usual.

When it comes to passport control, during the transition period, UK nationals will still be allowed to queue in the areas reserved for EU arrivals only.

 

2. Driving licences and pet passports

As long as they are valid, these will continue to be accepted.

 

3. European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

These are the cards that provide UK nationals with state-provided medical treatment in case of illness or accident.

They can be used in any EU country (as well as Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) and will continue to be valid during the transition period.

 

4. Living and working in the EU

Freedom of movement will continue to apply during the transition, so UK nationals will still be able to live and work in the EU as they currently do.

The same applies for EU nationals wanting to live and work in the UK.

 

5. Pensions

UK nationals living in the EU will continue to receive their state pension and will also receive the annual increase.

 

6. Budget contributions

The UK will continue to pay into the EU budget during the transition. This means existing schemes, paid for by EU grants, will continue to be funded.

 

7. Trade

UK-EU trade will continue without any extra charges or checks being introduced.

 

We hope that with the advent of Brexit, the lives of people, as well as the operation of companies and businesses, will continue to work as usual and they will not experience any significant aftershocks or problems.

Posted in English on Jan 31, 2020.