Prince Harry, Meghan Markle to exit as royals on March 31

Updated: Feb 21, 2020, 10:49 IST | Agencies | London

The deal, which now comes into effect from April 1, means the couple will no longer be representing the Queen in an official capacity. The couple has been in Canada with their nine-month-old son Archie since the agreement.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

London: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have announced that they will formally exit as Britain's frontline royals on March 31 following discussions with Buckingham Palace on formalising their new financially independent roles. Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, will no longer have an office at Buckingham Palace in London as they stop carrying out formal royal duties for Queen Elizabeth II from April 1, with the formal arrangements of the split to be assessed after 12 months.

"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will formally step down as senior royals from March 31," a spokesperson for the couple said on Wednesday. Harry, 35, will retain his military ranks of Major, Lieutenant Commander and Squadron Leader and will not use his honorary military positions or perform any official duties associated with these roles. The couple will retain their His and Her Royal Highness (HRH) titles but would not be permitted to use them. The use of the word "Royal" as part of their Sussex Royal brand is reportedly still under discussion with palace officials.

The spokesperson for the couple, who are expected to settle down in Canada and spend some time in the UK "regularly", said that they will unveil further details of their non-profit charitable foundation later in the year. Meanwhile, the duo will be back in the UK in the next few weeks to complete around six formal engagements, including Harry's attendance at an Invictus Games event with singer Jon Bon Jovi.

Markle, 38, is set to attend an International Women's Day event in early March, with the couple joining other senior royals for a Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey on March 9. Last month, in a royal family first, the couple had signed up to a formal exit deal, which saw them give up their UK taxpayer funding. The deal, which now comes into effect from April 1, means the couple will no longer be representing the Queen in an official capacity. The couple has been in Canada with their nine-month-old son Archie since the agreement.

1 April
Day the exit deal comes into effect

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