What Will Happen if Prince Harry Wins the Lawsuit Against the British Media?

Prince Harry is fed up, but really who can blame him? For the past year, he and his wife have been abused in the media in a way that would drive anyone insane.

For the most part, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have behaved like the sophisticated royals that they are and ignored the rumors that certain outlets have been spreading. But now, the gloves are coming off.

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

While Harry and Markle may not be able to respond to every claim that has been made about them, they can and are doing the next best thing…suing.

Harry’s lawsuit against the media

Last week, Harry announced that he and his wife would be taking action against the parent company of Mail on Sunday.

“As a couple, we believe in media freedom and objective, truthful reporting,” he wrote. “We regard it as a cornerstone of democracy and in the current state of the world – on every level – we have never needed responsible media more.”

“Unfortunately, my wife has become one of the latest victims of a British tabloid press that wages campaigns against individuals with no thought to the consequences – a ruthless campaign that has escalated over the past year, throughout her pregnancy and while raising our newborn son.”

He, then, pointed out that lies spread in the media have longlasting effects.

“There is a human cost to this relentless propaganda, specifically when it is knowingly false and malicious, and though we have continued to put on a brave face – as so many of you can relate to – I cannot begin to describe how painful it has been. Because in today’s digital age, press fabrications are repurposed as truth across the globe,” he continued. “One day’s coverage is no longer tomorrow’s chip-paper.”

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Continuing her visit in Johannesburg today, The Duchess of Sussex has visited the charity @actionaid_sa to speak to people working tirelessly to protect young girls in South Africa. The Duchess wanted to use her time here to help her better understand the issue of gender-based violence, and learn more about what was being done to tackle this crisis. @actionaid_sa work with a number of projects specifically helping young women, including the Teddy Bear Clinic, which provides essential support to children and families affected by domestic and sexual abuse, and @sonkegenderjustice, a not-for-profit working across Africa. The Duchess discussed the importance of trying to break a generational cycle and empower young girls, as well as working with boys and young men to raise their awareness so they can be a part of the solution rather than the problem. After the meeting today, The Duchess travelled privately to meet a number of young girls who are being supported by Action Aid and the Teddy Bear Clinic. These girls have come out of situations of abuse and degradation and have found their sense of self, purpose, and confidence in the spirit of sisterhood and community in The Girls Club. The Duchess described them as role models for all. For the privacy and protection of these young women, no photos of this visit will be shared. #RoyalVisitSouthAfrica Photo ©️ SussexRoyal / Getty / PA images

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“Up to now, we have been unable to correct the continual misrepresentations – something that these select media outlets have been aware of and have therefore exploited on a daily and sometimes hourly basis.”

He announced that he was suing the publisher for printing illegally obtained material.

“This particular legal action hinges on one incident in a long and disturbing pattern of behaviour by British tabloid media,” he wrote. “The contents of a private letter were published unlawfully in an intentionally destructive manner to manipulate you, the reader, and further the divisive agenda of the media group in question. In addition to their unlawful publication of this private document, they purposely misled you by strategically omitting select paragraphs, specific sentences, and even singular words to mask the lies they had perpetuated for over a year.”

What will happen if Prince Harry wins the lawsuit?

This isn’t the first time that the royal family has sued the media. Harry’s brother, William, actually sued French magazine, Closer, after it published topless pictures of his wife, Kate Middleton, in 2012. As a result, the pair was paid $112,800, which ultimately isn’t a lot of money to make up for having topless photos of a royal floating around.

In this case, Harry certainly isn’t after money, in fact, according to Insider, he plans to donate any money that he wins in the suit to an anti-bullying charity.

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Today, we are excited to be able to announce details for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s upcoming tour to Africa! • In just two weeks, Their Royal Highnesses will embark on this official tour focusing on community, grassroots leadership, women’s and girls’ rights, mental health, HIV/AIDS and the environment. This programme has been many months in the making, and The Duke and Duchess are eager to focus their energies on the great work being done in Southern Africa. From meeting with Archbishop Desmond Tutu to joining ‘Waves for Change’ on Monwabisi Beach, the South Africa programme will be educational and inspiring. The Duke is especially proud to continue the legacy left by his mother with her work in Angola as he joins Halo Trust again in an effort to rid the world of landmines. HRH will also travel to Malawi where he will check in on the British Army’s partnership with African Parks and will be working on the ground supporting local communities. The Duke is particularly proud to be able to deliver an exciting new initiative, a Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy three-country partnership which he designed and consulted with Governments in Namibia, Botswana and Angola to protect forest and wildlife corridors around the Okavango Delta. The Duchess will be working with local organisations to promote women and girls’ health and education, entrepreneurship and leadership. With such a textured culture and history, Their Royal Highnesses are grateful for the opportunity to connect with those on the ground in Southern Africa and to be inspired by the work being done and learn how they can be better supported. As President and Vice President of The Queens Commonwealth Trust and The Duke’s role as Commonwealth Youth Ambassador, The Duke and Duchess cannot wait to meet with young leaders mobilising change and adding to the beauty of these Commonwealth countries • “We look forward to seeing you soon!” • Photo ©️ PA images / Tim Graham – Getty Images / @Sentebale /@AfricanParksNetwork / @YouthAlert

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But other than monetary gain, there isn’t much that Harry can win from this suit.

These outlets have already proven that they don’t particularly care about being sued.

The Mail on Sunday was already sued by Prince Charles in 2005 for publishing pages from his personal journal. And now they have done almost the same thing to Markle, which proves they value the story over the possible trouble they may get in for publishing said story.

So, while this suit could lead to a win for Harry, it will probably be more symbolic than anything.