What happens after the referendum

As Scotland goes to the polls to vote on whether or not it remains a party of the UK, we take a look at how the vote will happen and what happens next.

The shape of the UK looks set to alter drastically, regardless of how the Scots vote in the referendum on independence. With this in mind, we have laid out the timetable for negotiations in the event of a yes or a no vote.

If you would like to discuss the implications for your organisation, please let us know and we’ll be happy to schedule a briefing session with some of our Scottish experts.

Timetable if Scotland votes YES 

19 September

Result of referendum announced

19 – 30 September

Paving Bill in Parliament

End of September

Work begins on appointing negotiating teams

October 2014 onwards

Negotiations conducted with rest of the UK, EU, Nato and other relevant supranational institutions

May 2015

UK General Election (Scottish MPs re-elected to Westminster)

March 2016

Constitutional convention put in place to begin drafting Scotland’s written constitution

24 March 2016

Scotland’s independence day. Scottish MPs leave their Westminster seats. Scotland joins the EU as an independent country

5 May 2016

Independent Scotland’s first election

Timetable if Scotland votes NO

NB: This is the timetable as proposed by Gordon Brown

19 September

Timetable for further powers published as a motion before the UK Parliament

16 October

Adjournment debate in the House of Commons led by Gordon Brown on Devo-Max

31 October

Command paper published setting out all the plans for more powers and introducing a  period of consultation


St Andrew’s Day – publication of White Paper setting out agreed plans

25th January

Burns Night – Legislation published

7th May 2015

Second reading of the Scotland Bill to take place immediately after UK General Election


George McGregor

Managing Partner, UK

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