Britain’s “Brexit Bill” received royal assent on Thursday morning, freeing the government to start the formal exit process from the European Union.
House of Lords Speaker Lord Fowler on Thursday announced in the upper chamber that the “European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill” has received the assent of Queen Elizabeth II.
The bill was passed by Parliament on Monday.
Royal assent is a formality—no monarch has refused to sign a bill for more than 300 years.
It means that U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May is now free to invoke Article 50 of the EU’s key treaty, triggering two years of exit negotiations. She said she will do that by March 31.