The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020 at midnight Eastern European Time (23:00 GMT). A transitional period now applies until 31 December 2020. During this period, all EU rules and laws continue to apply in the UK. For businesses and the public, virtually nothing will change. This will allow everyone to prepare for the new agreements that the EU and the UK intend to conclude after 31 December 2020. The 599-page Withdrawal Agreement covers the following main areas: The EU and the UK have reached an agreement on the Withdrawal Agreement, with a revised protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland (removal of the backstop) and a revised political declaration. On the same day, the European Council (Article 50) approved these texts. The agreement covers issues such as money, citizens` rights, border settlement and dispute settlement. It also contains a transition period and an overview of the future relationship between the UK and the EU.
It was published on 14 November 2018 and was the result of the Brexit negotiations. The agreement was approved by the heads of state and government of the remaining 27 EU countries and by the British government led by Prime Minister Theresa May, but it met with opposition from the British Parliament, whose approval was required for ratification. The consent of the European Parliament would also have been necessary. On 15 January 2019, the House of Commons rejected the Withdrawal Agreement by 432 votes to 202.  On March 12, 2019, the House of Commons again rejected the agreement by 391 votes to 242, and rejected a third time on March 29, 2019 by 344 votes to 286. . .