By ZOE MAGEE, ABC News
(LONDON) — Prince Harry and Meghan are now officially “financially independent” from Harry’s father, Prince Charles, ABC News has confirmed.
When the Duke and Duchess of Sussex first announced their plan in January to “step back” from their duties as senior members of Britain’s royal family, they stipulated that they wanted “to work to become financially independent.”
“Harry and Meghan have made clear that they do not want to be reliant on public funds in their new lives,” Harry’s grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, said in a statement at the time. “It has therefore been agreed that there will be a period of transition in which the Sussexes will spend time in Canada and the UK.”
As Harry and Meghan found their footing and began their working roles as non-royals in April, it was understood that Prince Charles had agreed to help the couple financially while they established themselves.
Now, after the couple signed a deal with Netflix this month to produce films and series, they are no longer living off of Prince Charles’ funds.
A source close to the couple said Harry and Meghan are no longer receiving financial support from The Prince of Wales, whether privately or from Prince Charles’ private estate, the Duchy of Cornwall, which is used to fund “the public, charitable and private activities of the Prince of Wales and his family.” They are also not accepting any contributions from the Sovereign Grant, the British government’s annual taxpayer-funded payment to the monarchy to cover official expenses. Since Harry and Meghan no longer use their HRH titles and no longer receive public funds for royal duties, they are free to earn money on their own.
In July, Harry, 35, and Meghan, 39, moved with their son, Archie, to a new home in Santa Barbara, California, and have largely kept a low profile, stepping out publicly only to make several outings for charity and for causes close to their hearts.
With their new Netflix deal, their priority will be creating programs that resonate with their values and highlighting issues on which their nonprofit, Archewell, will also focus, according to a source close to the couple. Currently there are several projects in development, including a nature docu-series and an animated series that celebrates inspiring women.
“Our focus will be on creating content that informs but also gives hope,” Meghan and Harry told The New York Times in a statement. “As new parents, making inspirational family programming is also important to us.”
The couple have also signed on as speakers with Harry Walker Agency, the global speaker’s bureau that represents a range of celebrities and power brokers from former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama to former first lady Michelle Obama and football star Tom Brady. They are expected to focus their public speaking engagements on social justice issues and mental health.
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.