The transition period
What is the transition period?
After the UK left the EU on 31 January, we entered into a Transition Period that ends on 31 December 2020. This is a period of time in which we are no longer a member of the EU but continue to be subject to EU rules and a member of the single market and customs union while the negotiations on our future relationship with the EU were taking place.
When does it end?
The transition period ends on 31 December 2020. This date will not change or be extended - this is written into our laws. Changes will therefore come into force on 1 January 2021.
Do I need to do anything?
Yes. The end of the transition period will bring about a series of changes and opportunities for which we all need to prepare. The UK will be leaving the single market and customs union at the end of the year.
The best way to find out what you need to do is to visit the GOV.UK Transition pages. You can answer a few short questions and receive a personalised list of actions for you, your family and your business. You can also sign up to emails to get updates when things change.
I already did some of the actions when asked to prepare in the past. Do I have to do them again?
Yes. Guidance is updated on a regular basis, so to ensure you know what is changing, go to the GOV.UK Brexit Transition pages and use the transition checker and make sure you are registered for updates.
What are the key actions I might need to take to prepare for the end of the transition period?
The actions the public and business owners need to take vary based on their circumstances. Some of the key actions include:
- make sure you are ready to travel to the EU and EFTA states from 1 January 2021, for example by getting comprehensive travel insurance, ensuring your passport is valid, and checking your roaming policy with your mobile phone provider.
- if you want to travel to the EU and EFTA states with your pet from 1 January 2021, contact your vet at least four months before you travel.
- make sure your business is ready to export or import from/to the EU, for example by getting an EU EORI number or registering with the relevant customs authority.
Key actions that businesses and individuals need to take before the end of the transition period can be found on the GOV.UK Brexit Transition pages.
Are all the actions that businesses and individuals need to take online on GOV.UK?
Yes. Key actions you can take are in one place on the GOV.UK Brexit Transition pages. Here, you can complete the ‘Transition Checker tool’ to find out actions to take and register for updates.