This is How Much It Will Cost to Protect Harry and Meghan Once They Live in North America

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have vowed to become financially independent from Queen Elizabeth. The two made a jaw-dropping statement earlier in the week, announcing that they intend to “step back” as senior royals. The announcement has caused major outcry among the public, with some people siding with the Sussexes and others not.

The two will reportedly still have publicly funded security while they make their transition. But how much will it cost to protect them in North America?

Prince Harry Meghan Markle
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle | Dan Istitene/Pool/Getty Images

Harry and Meghan are officially taking a ‘step back’ from royal life

The couple made a shocking announcement to start off 2020 — they’re planning to “step back” from being royals. Meghan and Harry have had a tough time being in the public eye since they wed. The media have attacked Meghan relentlessly, and many members of the public don’t feel that she compares to Kate. Meghan and Harry have filed a lawsuit against several British tabloids, which has only added fuel to the fire. And after the two decided to spend six weeks in solace on their trip to Vancouver, British Columbia, they realized they now want to live a less public life.

The two plan to become financially independent

Part of the couple’s announcement was that they plan to become financially independent from the queen but still support her. Right now, the couple’s lifestyle is funded by the queen, who is funded by taxpayer money. So, yes, the couple’s multi-million-dollar wedding was essentially paid for by the people of the United Kingdom. Meghan and Harry then went on to renovate their massive home, known as Frogmore Cottage, for nearly $2 million — a number that was heavily funded by taxpayers as well. Now, the two plan to stop using taxpayer money for their lifestyle. But not everything will be coming out of their own pockets.

Their security detail costs an estimated $1 million per year — and could likely cost more in North America

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are reportedly still going to be funded by the queen (so, the taxpayers) for their security detail. And according to British reporter Rob Shuter, it’s not cheap to protect the royal couple. “$1 million per year is the number I got from the security company,” Shuter said on Good Day New York on January 9. However, now that they’ll have to adapt to a brand new living situation, the security detail might cost even more. And taxpayers certainly wouldn’t be happy about funding a family that doesn’t even want to consider itself royalty. “She could end up one of the most hated women in Britain,” Shuter said.

Many taxpayers have a problem with the couple’s departure

If Meghan and Harry choose to leave the royal family, it essentially means that taxpayer money was spent on the couple when it never should have been. Their wedding and home renovations cost millions, and now, they don’t want to be attached to the name any further. Naturally, many taxpayers have taken issue with the couple’s departure. And though Meghan and Harry claim they aren’t fully leaving the royal family, it’s unclear how this supposed 50/50 split will actually work. “It’s just never happened before successfully,” royal commentator Eloise Parker told Good Day New York. Time will tell if Meghan and Harry can be the first ones to make it work.