London: One of the major questions following Meghan and Harry’s announcement that they wanted to step back from their “senior” roles in the royal family revolved around their titles. Would they remain his and her royal highness? What about Duke and Duchess of Sussex?
Here’s what we know about what their future plans mean for their royal titles: While they will retain their His and Her Royal Highness titles, they will no longer actively use them.
In mid-January, Buckingham Palace issued a statement clarifying that beginning this spring, Harry and Meghan will step back from official royal duties and no longer use the titles His Royal Highness and Her Royal Highness. They will continue to use the titles of Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are grateful to Her Majesty and the Royal Family for their ongoing support as they embark on the next chapter of their lives.
As agreed in this new arrangement, they understand that they are required to step back from Royal duties, including official military appointments. They will no longer receive public funds for Royal duties.
With The Queen’s blessing, the Sussexes will continue to maintain their private patronages and associations. While they can no longer formally represent The Queen, the Sussexes have made clear that everything they do will continue to uphold the values of Her Majesty.
The Sussexes will not use their HRH titles as they are no longer working members of the Royal Family.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have shared their wish to repay Sovereign Grant expenditure for the refurbishment of Frogmore Cottage, which will remain their UK family home.
Buckingham Palace does not comment on the details of security arrangements. There are well established independent processes to determine the need for publicly-funded security. This new model will take effect in the Spring of 2020.
When Harry and Meghan first shared their plans, they signed the initial statement as “Their Royal Highnesses, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex,” indicating that they wanted to keep their royal status and titles while “starting to carve out a progressive new role.”
Their website, titled Sussex Royal was another indication that they hoped to both keep and continue to use their titles.
As the Sussexes point out on their website, there have been other royals, who have retained their HRH status while earning a professional income.
“Yes, there is precedent for this structure and applies to other current members of the Royal Family who support the monarch and also have full time jobs external to their commitment to the monarchy,” reads their description.
But it should be noted that a scenario exactly like Harry and Meghan’s, in which a senior member of the royal family wants to become financially independent but still have some royal duties, is unprecedented.
In February, the Sussexes clarified their titles moving forward on their website.
“As agreed and set out in January, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will retain their “HRH” prefix, thereby formally remaining known as His Royal Highness The Duke of Sussex and Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex,” they wrote.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will no longer actively use their HRH titles as they will no longer be working members of the family as of Spring 2020.”
They will no longer use the name Sussex Royal.
While Harry and Meghan’s Instagram and website used the branding Sussex Royal, they will no longer use that name following their transition out of their senior royal roles.
“Given the specific UK government rules surrounding use of the word ‘Royal’, it has been therefore agreed that their non-profit organisation will not utilise the name ‘Sussex Royal’ or any other iteration of ‘Royal,’” the couple wrote on their website.
“While there is not any jurisdiction by The Monarchy or Cabinet Office over the use of the word ‘Royal’ overseas, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex do not intend to use ‘Sussex Royal’ or any iteration of the word ‘Royal’ in any territory (either within the UK or otherwise) when the transition occurs Spring 2020.”