Everything You Need to Know About 'The Royal Exit'

On Wednesday, January 8 The Sussexs annouced to the world via in official statement on their Instagram account (@SussexRoyal) that they would no longer be 'senior members' of the Royal Family and would be splitting their time between the UK and North America.

The statement read as follows:

“After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment. We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honour our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages. This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity. We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.” - The Duke and Duchess of Sussex

The statement came only one day after Their Royal Highnesses returned to royal duties after at 6 week hiatus with a visit to Canada House in London.

The visit entailed meeting with the Canadian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. Harry and Meghan has just returned from their 6 week holiday in Canada.

@SussexRoyal later revealed that the couple made a private visit to the Hubb Community Kitchen on the same day.

The day after the January 8 announcement, The Duchess was seen leaving from a private meeting with Mayhew Animal Home of which the Duchess was made patron of just one year prior in January 2019.  It was reported that The Duchess quickly jetted back to Canada after the meeting to 8-month-old Archie who reportedly did not return to the UK with his mum and dad. Instead, Archie had stayed in Canada with his nanny and Jessica Mulroney, Meghan's best friend. 

On January 13, after nearly a week of public speculation, her Majesty the Queen, Prince Charles, The Duke of Cambridge, and The Duke of Sussex reportedly met at Sandringham in what was dubbed a 'Royal Summit' to hash out the details of Harry and Meghan's royal futures.

The Duchesses of Sussex, Cambridge, and Cornwall were said to have not participated in the meeting. Prince Philip was also not part of the talks.

Following the 90-minute meeting, The Queen released the following official statement:

With more questions than answers, Meghan surfaced for the first time since the announcement boarding a seaplane in Canada on January 14.

We later learned that The Duchess was headed to the Downtown Eastside Women's Centre on mainland Vancouver. The purpose of The Duchess's visit was to offer support and boost staff spirit.

The next day, Justice for Girls, tweeted that Meghan had also visited their charity.

Despite his uncertain royal future, on January 15, Prince Harry announced the 2022 Invictus Games will take place in Dusseldorf, Germany.

While Meghan was focusing on philanthropy post bombshell announcement, Harry was back to royal duties hosting the Rugby World Cup 2021 tournament draw at Buckingham Palace.

With her future still unclear, The Duchess was spotted picking up long-time friend Heather Dorak from the Victoria Airport in Canada on January 16.

The final word and agreement on what the Sussexes new life post Senior Royal status will look like came down from the Queen on January 18. All changes will be effective in Spring of this year.

  • Harry and Meghan will keep their HRH titles, but will not use them nor will they be known solely as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. They will be called Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex or Harry and Meghan. 
  • Harry, who was born Prince of Wales. will remain a prince.
  • Harry will remain 6th in line to the throne and Archie will remain 7th in line to the throne.

  • They will no longer receive any public funds for royal duties they undertake in the future.
  • Meghan and Harry will no longer formally represent the Queen
  • The Sussexes will continue to maintain their private patronages and associations.
  • The Duke and Duchess plan to spend their most of their time in North America.

  • The Queen is allowing the couple to continue to use Frogmore Cottage as their official residence in the UK. 
  • The couple will pay back the 2.4m euros ($3.1m) of taxpayer money used to refurbish Frogmore Cottage.

  • Harry will lose his official military appointments including Captain General of the Marines, Honorary Air Commandant Royal Air Force Honington, and Commodore-in-Chief of Small Ships and Diving. 
  • The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will lose their appointments as Commonwealth Youth Ambassadors.

  • At this time, Harry and Meghan are expected to keep their positions as President and Vice President of the Queen's Commonwealth Trust.
  • The Duke of Sussex will continue to have royal duties until the new model takes effect in the Spring. 

  • The couple will continue to receive private funds from Harry's father, Price Charles, through the Duchy of Cornwall fund (to a speculated amount of $2-$4m a year).
  • Meghan and Harry are still members of the Royal Family, but non-working members.
  • Arrangements and payment of personal security for the couple is not yet known.

See the official statement below:

Meghan and Harry's step back from the Royal Family and implementation of the new model was largely brought on by the couple's unhappiness with the intense media scrutiny. The new model will allow Harry, Meghan, and Archie to live more privately much like Harry's royal cousins Princess Eugenie, Peter Philips, Princess Beatrice, and Zara Tindall and their families.

Possibly most interesting, the new model will allow the couple to make money or earn an income in whatever way the want. Meghan is free to return to acting, the couple can to partner with their celebrity friends on different business opportunities, get paid for interviews, write books, do paid appearances, etc.

Reports say Harry is set to fly back to Canada and his wife and child early this week.


  1. I definitely thought of you when seeing all of the news about it!

  2. I'm so happy that they made this decision for their family. I can't even imagine the pressure and scrutiny they were constantly under. Excited to see where their journey takes them now <3

  3. I had absolutely no idea that there was the option to take a step back from Royal duties. This is pretty wild to me, however I really do not know how the Royal family works. I am excited to see where this journey takes them though ♥

  4. Thank you for breaking this all down! I've read so much, and a lot of it has been super confusing. I understand the heartbreak and confusion on all sides, but I find their desire for independence admirable. I just hope that they uphold the values of the Crown as they would have otherwise...as silly as that sounds.