What does a no-deal Brexit actually mean?

Noel Edmonds Image copyright REX/Shutterstock
Image caption Not now, mate

What does the phrase "no deal" mean to you?

Depending on whether your answer is "an anonymous phone call offering me money" or "one of the options MPs are being asked to consider to determine how the UK leaves the EU" will probably show how devoted you are to Brexit.

Similar to any big game show (we're talking politics now, sorry Deal or No Deal fans), Brexit has had its fair share of twists and turns and dramatic moments since the referendum vote in June 2016.

Whether it's the "Nick, don't go!" EastEnders-style moment...

Or Theresa May's car door being an analogy for the whole process...

Or Brexit making a celebrity out of the grown man that has to shout "order" at MPs in a very dramatic way...

It's been FULL. OF. BANTS.

Well stitch up your sides and buckle up because there's another Brexit staple that's popping up more and more now (which you might want to add to your Brexit vocabulary): No-deal Brexit.

What does it mean?

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Media captionNo deal is becoming "more likely" according to the EU's chief negotiator

No deal means the UK leaving the European Union and cutting ties immediately, with no agreement at all in place.

The EU has previously said a no-deal Brexit would mean border checks would have to be brought in - which would affect things like exports and travel between the UK and EU.

Things like how the UK trades with the EU and the rights of UK citizens living in the EU and visa-versa would also be up in the air.

The government says it's made initial plans for a no-deal Brexit and has told businesses to do the same.

Image caption Heads up, this is what Theresa May means if she ever invites you to a lock-in

The UK was due to leave the UK on 29 March but so-called Brexit day sailed by after politicians repeatedly voted against the proposal Theresa May hammered out with the EU (aka the withdrawal deal).

The EU has given the UK until 12 April to see if Parliament can agree on what should happen next - with the general understanding that yet another extension would only be on the table if the UK knows what it wants to do.

At the moment, that's not happening.

MPs have been voting on various other options but none have been agreed.

On Tuesday 2 April, Theresa May emerged from a mammoth Brexit-escape-room-type-nightmare round of talks to say she wants a short extension to the deadline - no later than 22 May.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Thankfully, for everyone involved, this guy has nothing to do with this type of deadlock

But, if things carry on until 12 April without MPs agreeing another option - as it stands - the UK would leave the EU with no deal.

And if (yes, another if) that happens the UK would have to follow rules set out by the World Trade Organization (WTO).

It would mean UK exports would be put under the same checks and tariffs that the EU puts on other non-EU countries which also follow these rules.

Some Brexiteers support a no-deal Brexit and say it would mean the UK would be fully independent, would be able make trade deals around the world and wouldn't have to pay the divorce bill - estimated to be £39bn.

But no-deal critics say it could cause chaos at the borders, push up food prices and damage businesses and the economy.

With Brexit Day 2.0 still days away, there's still time for Theresa May to ask MPs to vote on her deal for a fourth time, an emergency summit of EU leaders to consider another Brexit extension to be held, and a load more no-deal memes to spread around WhatsApp.

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