The EU and UK have agreed a further delay to the UK leaving the EU (‘Brexit’) until 31st October 2019.
The UK could leave earlier if a withdrawal agreement has been ratified by MPs however the UK must now take part in European elections on 23rd May 2019; if it did not the UK would have to leave the EU on 1st June 2019 without a deal.
As it still not clear how Brexit will happen, W2 have taken steps to ensure that any risks associated with information and / or data sharing have been adequately addressed.
Brexit with an agreement
If the draft Withdrawal Agreement goes through and the data protection relationship envisaged by the Future Relationship document comes to pass, it sets out that EU law (including data protection law) will continue to apply until a treaty governing the future relationship between the EU and the UK comes into force. This means the UK will not be “outside” the “safe” transfer zone and EU>UK transfers will be unaffected.
Brexit without an agreement (no deal)
The biggest ‘data sharing’ or ‘data flows’ related risk if a ‘no deal’ Brexit scenario were to happen would lie with W2’s EEA based clients (non-UK) who use the services of W2 (a UK based business) as clients will need to remain compliant with the GDPR.
How have W2 prepared?
For our EEA headquartered customers that may be affected, W2’s role is one of assistance and support to ensure that our information sharing relationship continues seamlessly post-Brexit. For our clients that have headquarters in the EEA, we now stand ready with a set of Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs) that can be sent out on request. These agreements can be put in place to ensure EU>UK data flows are still valid and lawful if a no deal scenario were to happen.
What are the SCCs?
If someone in Europe (in the EEA) sends personal data to someone else who is outside the EEA, they must comply with GDPR rules on international transfers of personal data. The standard contractual clauses (the SCCs) are one of a number of ‘safeguards’ which can be used to comply, and the one most likely to be appropriate for small and medium-sized businesses.
The SCCs are standard sets of contractual terms and conditions which the sender and the receiver of the personal data both sign up to. They include contractual obligations which help to protect personal data when it leaves the EEA and the protection of the GDPR.
The SCCs are an additional safeguard for a no deal Brexit and do not replace any current W2 contracts.
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15 years experience as a Chartered Accountant working for a big 4 accounting firm, Deloitte and a leading high tech and fast growth semiconductor company in Wales.