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- Meghan Markle and Prince Harry could be in breach of their “Megxit” deal if they undertake paid private projects outside the royal family before spring.
- The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are still working members of the royal family until they completely step back in the spring.
- With reports of Harry and Markle’s appearance at a JPMorgan event in Miami and of Harry’s talks with Goldman Sachs, it appears they’re already working toward financial independence.
- However, Buckingham Palace has not confirmed whether Harry and Markle were paid by these companies, and it did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Buckingham Palace announced in January that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle would completely step back from their royal duties and titles this spring.
When this new model takes effect, the couple will no longer rely on public funds and will become financially independent.
However, it appears they have already made a start in their pursuit of private work – and if they get paid for these projects before the spring, the couple could be in breach of their agreement.
Last week, the couple made an appearance at a JPMorgan event in Miami, a palace representative confirmed to Insider’s Darcy Schild.
There, Harry made a speech in which he reportedly discussed mental health, the trauma of losing his mother, and the decision behind “Megxit.”
It was unclear whether this was a paid appearance.
According to the Mirror, Harry has also held talks with Goldman Sachs, though it’s also unclear whether he’s been paid by the company.
A public-relations guru suggested to the publication that the couple could earn up to £1 billion ($1.3 billion) through corporate deals and brand-ambassador roles.
However, if these deals were to go through before the couple stop receiving public funds in the spring, it could jeopardize the terms of “Megxit.”
Harry and Markle have not yet completely stepped back from their roles within the royal family and could make a final royal appearance at Westminster Abbey’s Commonwealth Day service in March. Though Buckingham Palace could not confirm this to Insider, it did say that “members of the royal family have been invited” to attend the service.
“The agreement with the Queen technically starts in the spring,” Richard Fitzwilliams, a royal commentator, told Insider. “Harry and Meghan have said they want to be financially independent. It is not known whether they were paid for their JPMorgan appearance, but obviously this area is where their future lies.
“Connections with Goldman Sachs are likewise likely to be lucrative as the couple are obviously keen not to have to rely on Charles for their funding and also to build their Sussex Royal brand into one of the world’s most successful, and heighten their profile as charitable activists as well,” he added.
Harry and Markle are still expected to receive private funds from the Duchy of Cornwall, which is managed by Prince Charles, according to the Daily Mail royal correspondent Rebecca English.
However, another royal commentator, Joe Little, told Insider that the couple would likely have some flexibility in their agreement.
“We don’t know the specifics of the agreement with the Queen, so it’s impossible to say if Harry and Meghan have done something they shouldn’t,” said Little, the managing editor of Majesty magazine.
“‘Spring’ is pretty vague, but I’d imagine there’s a degree of flexibility with all the relevant parties,” he added.
Buckingham Palace did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
- Read more:
- How Meghan Markle and Prince Harry could earn enough money to become ‘financially independent’ of the crown – and why it likely won’t include a return to the screen
- Why the Queen’s eldest grandson Peter Phillips doesn’t have to follow royal protocol during his divorce
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