What happens if Parliament passes Theresa May's Brexit deal?

The Commons vote on her Brexit deal has been pencilled in for January 14. Let’s take a closer look at what happened hours before the vote was scheduled to happen, and what it means for her deal…

What happens if Parliament approves May's deal?

Mrs May and agreed the terms of an exit deal at an EU leaders' summit on November 25.

She now has to get it through Parliament, where MPs have been promised "a meaningful vote".

On December 4 she kicked off five days of debate in the House of Commons ahead of a crunch vote scheduled for December 11.

The PM dramatically abandoned the ‘Meaningful Vote’ scheduled for Tuesday – after MPs had already debated it for three days.

It will now take place on January  14, 2019.

She took the unprecedented step after admitting she was on course to lose heavily.

Yesterday No10 confirmed the vote would not be held before Christmas but “as soon as possible” in January.

Cabinet sources told The Sun that they are planning to hold the Commons vote on the first day possible after MPs return from their Christmas break.

But they have conceded that they will be forced to start the process again by holding a full five days of debate running up to the vote – instead of resuming where they left off last week.

It did not start well for the PM as the government lost three preliminary votes.

Eight former cabinet ministers led a devastating revolt to wrestle back control of Brexit.

On the eve of the vote, and in order to avoid a likely crushing defeat, May announced the vote would be delayed – likely until January 21.

If the deal is finally passed through Parliament, an EU withdrawal agreement bill will be introduced in early 2019.

And if that is subsequently passed then the European Parliament will have their own vote.

If the deal receives a majority of votes in Brussels it will then need to be approved by the European Council, the ruling body of the EU made up of heads of government.

On March 29, 2019, the UK will leave the EU and the transition phase will begin, lasting until December 2020.

What happens if Parliament rejects the Brexit agreement?

If MPs reject the deal, the Tory government has up to 21 days to put forward a new plan.

Any new agreement would then need to be renegotiated with Brussels.

There are a number of ways this process could play out – and none of them would be good news for the Prime Minister.

The UK could end up leaving the European Union with no deal on its future relationship with the trading bloc.

There could be another General Election to let the British public have a say on which party they believe is best placed to navigate the Brexit storm.

Some pundits say a second EU referendum could be the only way out of the impasse.

In another increasingly possible outcome, MPs may not vote on the deal at all.

The day before the vote, it was reported that Theresa May would pull the planned vote in the face of near-certain defeat.

If that is the case, it's not yet clear when, if ever, the Brexit deal vote would end up taking place instead.

The PM is expected to call European leaders today to try and find some way to guarantee the Irish backstop will never come into force without Britain's consent.

What is a no deal Brexit?

A no-deal British departure from the European Union means leaving without formal arrangements for the future relationship.

Currently Britain's trade, customs and immigration rules are tied up with the single market and a host of EU regulatory bodies.

Ministers are seeking a legal deal to replace these with looser arrangements so we are outside the single market and customs union but keeping close ties so cross-border trade is easy.

Without a deal, the UK would be treated by the EU as a "third country" with commerce governed by World Trade Organisation rules.


It's reported DUP leader Arlene Foster believes the UK is set to leave the EU without a deal.

Leaked emails say the Northern Irish leader was left furious after "hostile and difficult" meetings with the EU boss Michel Barnier.

She is poised for talks to collapse totally between Britain and the EU, which would mean we would leave with no deal, the Observer reported.

Mrs May has denied "rolling over" on the deal with the EU after DUP leader Arlene Foster claimed May had "given up" on negotiations before agreeing the deal.
Former Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon has said the deal was "doomed" and must be renegotiated.

More than 100 Conservative MPs are said to be planning to vote against Mrs May's exit deal.


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