Prince Harry and Meghan Markle may lose their royal titles as soon as next March and there are a few indicators this could happen, an expert has said.
It's unlikely that the Queen will directly strip the Duke and Duchess of Sussex of their royal titles because this could damage both the couple's reputation and the Crown's, which Queen Elizabeth has promised to protect, reports The Express.
When Harry and Meghan stepped down from their royal duties in March this year, it was reported the Queen said she would review their position in a year's time.
This review is coming up in March 2021.
If the couple were to lose their royal titles, it would mean they are formalised as private citizens. They could no longer be referred to as Royal Highnesses.
"The Royal Family and Sussexes have agreed to an initial 12-month review to ensure the arrangement works for all parties," their statement said.
Royal expert and author Robert Lacey has said that if the review decides the couple cannot remain working royals, then it is "quite likely" they will lose or forfeit their HRH titles, as reported previously in The Express.
- READ MORE
- 1. Kate Middleton 'surprised' by present Meghan Markle sent her on 39th birthday
- 2. Meghan Markle and Harry 'invited to Queen’s birthday parade in first Royal reunion'
- 3. Prince Harry and Meghan look to set up production company to create comedy shows
- 4. Meghan Markle and Prince Harry to quit social media after barrage of online abuse
In addition, Dr Anna Whitelook has said the fact that the role of Captain General of the Royal Marines has been taken from Prince Harry and offered to Prince William is the biggest indicator yet that the couple could lose their royal title.
Harry was stripped of his military appointments when he stepped away from royal duties.
However, Dr Whitelock feels the 2021 review is more likely to focus on what sort of work Meghan and Harry might do in the future rather than taking away their titles.
Meghan and Harry's HRH titles are currently in suspension.
Mr Lacey explained: "The way it is presented at the moment is that they are HRH but they choose not to use it, it doesn't say that they are banned from using it. "
"If this develops in the future, I think it will be presented in the same way - they choose not to be royals anymore. That doesn't mean they give up their titles."
He added that the Queen has bestowed these titles upon them, and that the world is full of people who have British titles and are still free to do what they like.
In other words, Harry and Meghan may just hold the titles but never really use them, especially since they are already well-known by so many around the world.
Nigel Cawthorne, also a royal author, said he doesn't believe the Duke and Duchess of Sussex would ever give up their titles of their own accord because that could be seen as very offensive to the Queen.
He told The Express: "I don’t think there is the slightest chance that the Sussexes will give up their titles.
"They were a wedding present by the Queen to the married couple and it would be a very ungrateful gesture to relinquish these titles as it would, in effect, be a snub to Harry’s grandmother the Queen."
Meghan, Harry and their son, Prince Archie, are living in an £11m mansion in Santa Barbara, California.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex secured a TV deal with Netflix thought to be worth around £112m earlier this year.
The boss of Netflix says Prince Harry and Meghan Markle "shopped themselves around" for a big money deal before striking a contract with the streaming site.
Their new yet-to-be-named production company will make documentaries, feature films, scripted shows and children's programming.
But Netflix CEO Reed Hastings claims the couple offered themselves to "all major companies" before agreeing the mega deal.
Omid Scoobie, co-author of a new book about Sussexes, Finding Freedom, previously told Vanity Fair he believes it is "destiny" that Harry has finally found happiness at the age of 36.
He said: "This is a man who said he wanted to continue his mother’s work. We’ve long mourned Diana’s place on the humanitarian landscape, and here we have Harry, who embodies her values and is willing to dedicate his life to them.
"He’s at an age now where he’s taken that baton and is able to run with it in a way that he would never have been able to do within the House of Windsor. That’s very powerful and exciting."