Supreme court rules Scottish Government can join Brexit legal battle

The Scottish Government is to be allowed to intervene in the Brexit court battle. Picture: Neil Hanna
The Scottish Government is to be allowed to intervene in the Brexit court battle. Picture: Neil Hanna
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The Scottish Government is to join the next legal battle over Brexit and argue for Holyrood to have a vote on the issue.

The UK Supreme Court today ruled that Scotland’s top law officer will be allowed to address a hearing on the triggering of the Article 50 process to leave the EU next month.

The High Court recently ruled that MPs must have a vote on the Article 50 process, but the UK Government is opposed to this and is appealing the issue at the Supreme Court next month.

READ MORE: Brexit court ruling: Sturgeon considers ‘actively opposing’ appeal

It was confirmed today that Scotland’s Lord Advocate James Wolffe will be allowed to address the hearing, along with legal representatives from the other devolved administrations.

READ MORE: SNP’s Norway-style EU deal ‘would lead to hard border’

A Supreme Court spokesman said today: “Counsel for the Scottish Government and for the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain have been invited to address in their skeleton arguments the relevance of points of Scots Law, so far as they do not also form part of the law of England and Wales, to the determination of the present proceedings.”

Ms Sturgeon, believes that the consent of the Scottish Parliament and the UK’s other devolved parliaments and assemblies should also be sought before Article 50 is triggered.

It could mean there would have to be a vote on Article 50 in Holyrood as well as in Westminster if the Supreme rules against the UK Government. However, it is unclear whether this would mean that Brexit could blocked.

A panel of three High Court judges last month agreed with campaigners that the move would be unconstitutional, and that parliament would need to vote before the formal process of leaving the EU can begin.