A top legal expert has told Express.co.uk that under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, Britain has the legal right to leave the EU without a withdrawal agreement should they not agree to exit terms.
And Prime Minister Theresa May can easily thwart any attempts by EU leaders, including Polish politician Donald Tusk and Luxembourg's former Prime Minister Jean Claude Juncker, to hold the British tax payer to ransom by simply saying “No!”.
Mrs May is in a good position to simply walk away from outrageous demands
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Britain is the sixth largest economy in the world and is no backwater minnow that must comply with the erroneous demands of an overbearing unelected big brother
Christopher O’Donnell, Founder Automatic
Hedge fund founder and lawyer Christopher O’Donnell says subsection 3 of Article 50 clearly provides for two exit scenarios.
The first scenario is where Britain and the EU agree a withdrawal agreement.
The second scenario is where Britain and the EU cannot agree a withdrawal agreement, and in this second scenario, Britain simply leaves the EU without a withdrawal agreement two years after it issues a leave notice under Article(50)(1).
Liam Fox and David Davis are in a good legal position to walk away if no deal can be struck
The Lisbon Treaty does not impose any financial penalties on Britain should it leave the EU without a withdrawal agreement.
Accordingly, the UK can actively remove itself from the EU, and it is under no obligation to settle any new financial arrangements once formal notice is given.
Britain has indicated that the EU will continue to receive funding from its Foreign Aid budget which accounts for 0.07 per cent of its gross national income (GNI).
However recent demands from Brussels politicians which laid down additional settlement costs of as much as £50bn plus the £91bn total contribution committed over the next three years have sparked fury.
David Cameron had been negotiating with the EU and Angela Merkel but that failed
It has already been established that the UK can opt to trade with EU countries using World Trade Organisation tariffs which would even save the country billions from the "Day One Scenario" being contingency planned by civil servants.
However the UK is said to favour a free trade agreement or opt for a similar deal brokered by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau last year.
Mr O'Donnell, who qualified as a lawyer in both Australia and Britain, and founded the hedge fund Automatic, says the wording of Article 50(3) clearly envisages a scenario where Britain leaves the EU without a withdrawal agreement.
Mrs May is exploring all avenues for Britain as she plans the country's exit strategy
The wording of Article 50(3) states: "The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification referred to in paragraph 2, unless the European Council, in agreement with the Member State concerned, unanimously decides to extend this period.”
Mr O'Donnell added: "If Britain had issued the Article 50 Notice immediately after the Brexit referendum, Britain would have eaten 7 months of the 24 month countdown clock, and pressure would be mounting on the EU to agree a fair exit deal with Britain. This pressure would be building with each passing day. What an absolutely wonderful position for Britain to be in”.
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In addition to the enviable strength of Britain’s legal position, Mr O’Donnell argues that: "Britain is the sixth largest economy in the world and is no backwater minnow that must comply with the erroneous demands of an overbearing unelected big brother or economically starve”.
Mr O’Donnell added: “In additional to London being the financial centre of the world, in 2016 the UK had a trade deficit of approximately £68.7bn with the EU.
"If Britain and the EU stop trading with each other, the EU will suffer tremendously more than Britain.
"Britain has both the legal and commercial muscle to dictate its exit terms to the EU and it would be jolly good if Britain citizens embraced this”.
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