The British government said in July that it "will work with the EU to determine a fair settlement of the U.K.'s rights and obligations" -- its first acknowledgment that a bill of some amount might need to be paid. But Johnson said the dollar amounts being discussed by the EU "seem to me to be extortionate." Brexit Secretary David Davis has repeatedly rejected the notion of paying a gross 100 billion euros, describing just 1 billion pounds as "a lot of money." The Times newspaper reported on March 4 that government lawyers had found no legal obligation for the U.K. to pay up. A study by the House of Lords also questioned whether there was a legal requirement to pay and calculated the bill could be as low as 15 billion euros. May has said "money paid in the past" into joint EU projects and the European Investment Bank should be taken into account. When all is said and calculated, Johnson said May 13, Brussels could end up owing Britain money .