Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are giving up their royal titles in a deal announced Saturday, Jan. 18, by Buckingham Palace.
Under the agreement, the two will no longer use the titles “royal highness” or receive public funds for their work. Moving forward, they will be known as Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. Harry will remain a prince and sixth in line to the British throne.
Queen Elizabeth II said the agreement was finalized after months of negotiations.
“Following many months of conversations and more recent discussions, I am pleased that together we have found a constructive and supportive way forward for my grandson and his family,” the queen said in a statement. “Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family. I recognise the challenges they have experienced as a result of intense scrutiny over the last two years and support their wish for a more independent life. I want to thank them for all their dedicated work across this country, the Commonwealth and beyond, and am particularly proud of how Meghan has so quickly become one of the family. It is my whole family’s hope that today’s agreement allows them to start building a happy and peaceful new life.”
A palace spokeswoman also said the couple would repay the cost of renovating their cottage in Windsor, which records show cost 2.4 million pounds ($3.1 million).
The deal comes after Harry and Meghan announced earlier this month that they want to “step back” from royal duties.
The two plan to spend most of their time in Canada. Their new status is expected to begin this spring.