With European elections fast approaching, the EU27 set April 12 as the new Brexit deadline day - making it clear they don't want a reluctant Britain to participate in the poll.
If the Prime Minister fails in doing what she is told by European leaders, the United Kingdom will either leave - against the wishes of nearly everyone in the British and European political establishments - without a deal, or remain an EU member for either the long or short term.
If Mrs May can get her withdrawal deal through Parliament next week, that date will be pushed back to 22 May to give time to pass the necessary legislation.
EU Council president and summit host Donald Tusk said the decision had been unanimous and that he was now presenting it to May. And the prime minister has wasted the goodwill of our European neighbours with her chaotic and confused approach.
If Mrs May's deal is rejected for a third time, Parliament will have until April 12 to consider alternative options.
Alternatively, they could choose a much closer future relationship with the European Union than is now proposed.
Anti-EU supporters of "hard Brexit" still believe that rejecting it can lead to a no-deal departure from the bloc as soon as April 12.
The pound rose on news of the delay but is likely to remain volatile amid uncertainty over what path Britain will now take.More news: Manchester United Transfer Plans: 9 Players Who Could Leave
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The courts have ruled that we can unilaterally revoke Article 50 to stop the clock ticking down to a no-deal Brexit.
"National humiliation is imminent through these "indicative votes", said Conservative MP Steve Baker, who favours leaving without a deal.
European Union leaders have agreed to delay the departure date by at least two weeks.
The EU last night (Thursday) granted the United Kingdom an extension to the Brexit process from March 29, which the House of Commons and House of Lords are expected to ratify.
The principal aim of their extension offer is thus to give Parliament the opportunity to force through a softer version of Brexit, or "even for the British to have a general election to break the current political impasse".
"The EU leaders asked her straight out at this meeting if she had a Plan B, as usual, she refused to answer".
May will spend much of the next few days trying to persuade MPs to back her deal.