How Much Does Meghan Markle Make as Duchess of Sussex?

Meghan Markle is a hardworking and determined woman. She started from the bottom, working odd jobs until she could carve out a niche for herself in Hollywood.

One thing Meghan could have never imagined while she was putting in long hours on the set of the Suits was the turn her life would ultimately take. Now that she’s become a member of the royal family, her work is of a different flavor. But, are her paychecks just as hefty?

What was Meghan Markle’s net worth before she went royal?

Meghan Markle
Meghan Markle | Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

Meghan was making a pretty penny while bringing Rachel Zane to life. She took home $50,000 per episode. If she was earning that much from her start on the show that adds up to $5.4 million banked between 2011 and 2018 from the show alone.

Meghan also used to make quite a bit of money through endorsements and sponsorships. How much is a bit? About $80,000 yearly for co-signing products, partnering with popular brands, and utilizing her platform as a marketing tool. What’s great is Meghan will continue to make residuals so long as episodes featuring her character air!

So how much has all her hard work amounted to pre her royal status? Meghan’s solo net worth was $5 million. Definitely not bad for just a few years in Hollywood. While she still had quite a few million to make to catch up to her sister-in-arms Kate Middleton, Meghan’s net worth is nothing to sneeze at!

How does the royal family make money?

Speaking of Kate and Meghan’s finances, how does the royal family making money anyway? Ironically enough, the queen isn’t the wealthiest Brit in the U.K. despite rocking a personal fortune that’s probably worth around $470 million. The majority of the queen and Prince Charles’ (her heir and Meghan’s father-in-law) funds come from the government and their private estates of course. Everyone else gets paid thanks to the trickle-down effect.

Here is the low down on royal finances. There are three core sources of income for Her Majesty:

  • The Sovereign Grant
  • The Duchy of Lancaster Estate
  • Her personal property and investments

The Sovereign Grant is basically a big check dished out from the government annually. It’s an expense account that helps cover almost anything and everything the Royal family could need from travel cost to staffing fees. How much is the grant? Well for the 2016-2017 fiscal year the queen got $58 million. Sources thought the amount would practically double in this latest fiscal year to help with the renovations of Buckingham Palace. So as you can see, the amount really varies based on the known needs of the family.

The next mysterious income stream is the Duchy of Lancaster, a private estate that consists of various properties dating back to 1265. The Duchy has produced quite a lot for the queen, upwards of $26 million in recent years. This money is utilized for both private matters and official expenses. It’s also the cash cow that other royal members use when tackling official engagements for Her Majesty. That’s just the queen. Charles and his people get over 90% of their income from their private estate, the Duchy of Cornwall. 

Does Meghan Markle make money as the Duchess of Sussex?

We’ve established that Meghan still has her own income streams thanks to her time on Suits. She also shares in on the large inheritance that dropped into Harry’s name on his 30th birthday. But what about for her work as the Duchess of Sussex? Well, the British taxpayers via the Sovereign Grant do help keep things afloat.

Their money helps cover some of her living expenses like “rent” and utilities. Considering the grant was recently upped for extensive renovations, its no surprise the trickle-down effect is working at its best here. Then there is the Duchy of Cornwall. While this money is for the heir to the throne, it’s unlikely that the Prince of Wales won’t make it a point to care for his extended royal family.

When it comes to Meghan’s hard work repping the queen at royal engagements, charitable organizations, royal tours, state dinners, and ceremonies her money and reimbursements are generally pulled from one of the income streams mentioned above. The salary deets are definitely kept quiet as the royal family doesn’t like the share their financial information, but no matter what it is, she is definitely well paid and well taken care of in her new role as the Duchess of Sussex.