Harry suffers major blow with Duke set to lose ‘crucial royal role’ after abandoning UK


PRINCE Harry’s position in a crucial royal role could be nearing its end following the Duke’s decision to move to the US, a royal expert has claimed.

The Duke of Sussex, 37, quit his role as a working senior member of the Royal Family along with his wife Meghan Meghan in 2020. The move dubbed ‘Megxit’ saw the couple move to the US, where they now live with their two children Archie, two, and seven-month-old Lilibet.

However, Harry’s decision to move abroad could now see him lose his place as one of the four individuals on the Queen’s Counsellors of State.

According to the law, the individuals who make up the Counsellors of State are the monarch’s spouse and the next four people in the line of succession who are over the age of 21.

At this present time, the positions are held by Prince Andrew, Prince Charles and his sons William and Harry.

An explanation of the role is detailed on the royal website and reads: “In the event that the Queen cannot undertake her official duties as Sovereign on a temporary basis due to illness or absence abroad, two or more Counsellors of State are appointed by Letters Patent to act in Her Majesty’s place.”

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Harry suffers major blow with Duke set to lose ‘crucial royal role’ after abandoning UK (Image: Getty and PA)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Harry quit his role as a working senior member of the Royal Family in 2020 (Image: Getty)

Royal expert Gertrude Daly, host of the Gert’s Royal Podcast, claims that technically only two Counsellors of State are required to step in for the Queen.

She claims Harry and Andrew no longer being working royals doesn’t really impact the set-up.

She told the Daily Star: “While Prince Andrew and Prince Harry are no longer working royals, we don’t really need to worry about them being Counsellors of State.

“First, Counsellors of State are only used for constitution duties of the sovereign, of which there are very few things the Queen is constitutionally required to do.

“Tasks like Privy Council Meeting and receiving new ambassadors usually happen once a month, and could be pushed to a later date if the Queen is ill.”

However, the royal expert claims that Harry could be removed from the Counsellors of State in a matter of years due to UK law, as he could lose his domiciled status and be ineligible for the position.

Harry could be succeeded in his position by his cousins Princess Beatrice or Princess Eugenie, depending on who is the reigning monarch at the time.

She claims this replacement would only happen though if Harry did not return to the UK in the time period.

Gertrude said: “Another reason why Prince Harry doesn’t need to be removed as a Counsellors of State now, is because he is going to be ineligible in a few years anyway.

“One of the requirements to be a Counsellors of State, is you have to be domiciled in the UK.

“The UK law states you lose domiciled status if you leave the UK, and are a non-UK resident for six tax years.

“That is not a royal rule, but a UK law that applies to everyone.

Prince Harry

Harry’s decision to move could see him lose his place as one of the Queen’s Counsellors of State (Image: Getty)

“So, in about four years, Prince Harry will be ineligible to be a Counsellors of State and his spot will go to the next adult in the line of succession.”

If Harry loses his domiciled status during the Queen’s reign, his spot as Counsellor of State would be filled by Beatrice.

While if the loss in status occurred during Charles’s reign, the spot would fall to Princess Eugenie, as Princess Beatrice would have taken Charles’ place when he becomes king.

Counsellors of State are authorised to carry out most of the official duties of the monarch, including attending Privy Council meetings, signing routine documents and receiving the credentials of new ambassadors to the UK.


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