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New requirement to notify the Independent Monitoring Authority of claims


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From 1 October 2023 any claim governed by the Civil Procedure Rules relating to a breach of citizens’ rights under the withdrawal agreements must be notified to the Independent Monitoring Authority.

The authority was set up under the terms of the withdrawal agreements with a duty to investigate  breaches of citizens’ rights after Brexit. The authority can investigate complaints, launch inquiries, and take or intervene in legal action.

A new practice direction is being added to the Civil Procedure Rules to support the authority in fulfilling its statutory duty in relation to claims relating to EU and EEA ETFA citizens’ rights.

The new practice direction is “Claims relating to EU and EEA EFTA Citizen’s rights under part 2 of the Withdrawal Agreement and part 2 of the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement”. This requires a party serving a statement of case which raise a citizens’ rights issue to also send a copy of the statement to the authority.

Notice should be sent either:
(a) by email to litigation@ima-citizensrights.org.uk or
(b) in hard copy to The Independent Monitoring Authority for the Citizens’ Rights Agreements, 3rd Floor, Civic Centre, Oystermouth Road, Swansea, SA1 3SN.

The authority has secured this change to the Civil Procedure Rules in order that it can see the volume and nature of cases brought before the civil courts. It also provides the authority with an opportunity to intervene in a case or take legal action in relation to a particular issue.

The notification requirement does not currently extend to tribunal claims or claims in Scotland and Northern Ireland. The authority is working with these bodies to seek changes to their rules. In the meantime, claimants and legal representatives bringing claims in these venues are encouraged to notify any claims which concern breaches of citizens’ rights under the withdrawal agreements to litigation@ima-citizensrights.org.uk.

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Lisa Salkeld

Lisa Salkeld is a Senior Legal Adviser at the Independent Monitoring Authority.