Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will not relinquish their titles but will need to “be taken away” directly by the King, according to royal author Christopher Andersen. The Duke of Sussex suggested the couple has no intention to give up on their roles, hinting that the change would not help resolve his qualms with the Royal Family. Under current rules, King Charles III would need to have MPs push new legislation through Parliament before he is able to have the Sussex title revert to the Crown.
Mr Andersen said: “He can’t relinquish them, they are going to have to be taken away. He’d have to go to his father and do that.
“My feeling is they actually would love to hold on to them. When he says he wants to repair his relationship with his father and brother, I suppose, on some level he does.
“He thinks it’s possible but this might be in the same category as his magical thinking about his mother still being alive.”
He told US Weekly: “I don’t think any rational person could look at this and think they’re headed towards some sort of reconciliation.”
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The future of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s titles has once again come under question following the release of the Duke’s bombshell memoir, Spare.
The late Queen gifted the Duke of Sussex title to her grandson upon his marriage to Meghan in 2018. He also received the additional titles of Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel.
By virtue of her marriage to Harry, Meghan Markle automatically became entitled to use the titles of Duchess of Sussex, Countess of Dumbarton and Baroness Kilkeel.
The title question arose following the couple’s decision to step down from the senior working royals roles in early 2020.
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But legislation relating to the removal of royal titles has remained unchanged for over 100 years and was specially designed to remove titles from peers of German descent who took up arms against the UK during World War One.
Speaking to Express.co.uk in October 2020, expert Marlene Koenig noted the current law would require Harry to have acted against his country.
She said: “Go back to 1917, with the Title Deprivation Act which removed the peerages from two members of the British Royal Family who were German and were enemies.
“That’s why they removed then and in 1919 the Royal Assent came that the Duke of Albany, the Duke of Cumberland and his son and an Austrian viscount were stripped of their peerages.
“And the Duke of Cumberland’s son could not inherit the peerage because he took arms against the United Kingdom. Has Harry taken up arms against the United Kingdom?”
But royal insiders have suggested following the release of Spare that there is a “very real possibility” Harry and Meghan will be stripped of their titles.
They said: “There’s a very real decision to be made of course with respect to whether or not the Sussexes get to keep their titles.
“The way to strike back would be to approve a measure whereby Harry and Meghan are stripped of their titles, and that’s a very real possibility – certainly if the toxicity doesn’t eventually subside.”
If the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were to be stripped of their titles, Prince Harry would still maintain his princely title as he is the son of the current king.
Meghan Markle would also be entitled to retain the title of Princess Henry.