In three ongoing lawsuits, Prince Harry accuses three of the largest newspaper groups in the UK of engaging in phone hacking and other illegal activities.
The Duke of Sussex lost his first lawsuit after a High Court judge ruled that he had no grounds to sue the UK Home Office over its decision that he could not privately pay for his police bodyguards. A lawyer claimed that Prince Harry’s numerous lawsuits could cost him millions even if he wins, but if he loses them he could be left with a bill of up to $20 million.
After he and his wife Meghan Markle retired as working royals in 2020, Prince Harry lost his police protection.
Prince Harry might lose money even if he wins, according to Mark Stephens, a UK-based attorney at Howard Kennedy, but if he loses every case, the cost could be between $15 million and $20 million.
“As a lawyer, I applaud Harry for taking it upon himself to sponsor the London legal village. The question of whether it’s wise was raised by Mark Stephens.
People have the right to file legal claims, but regardless of whether he prevails in some or all of them, he will lose money because even when you win, you never get back all of your expenses.
“You might receive 60 or 70%. Therefore, let’s assume that he spends between £6 million ($7.5 million) and £10 million ($12.5 million) on these cases. He will receive £6 million back, with the remaining amount owing to him. If he triumphs in all of them, that is. He could be forced to pay another £6 million to the opposing party if he loses them, the expert continued.
Additionally, Prince Harry is suing three of the largest newspaper groups in the UK: Rupert Murdoch’s News Group Newspapers, Associated Newspapers (publisher of the Daily Mail), and Mirror Group Newspapers, alleging phone hacking and other illegal actions.
Legal action is not always the best way to get the relief you need, Mark Stephens said. “I think with any claimant we are always cautious to take only the very best cases,” he said.
You’re offering yourself as a witness, and the senior attorney on the other side, the king’s counsel, is trying to undermine your credibility and make you appear foolish.
“As a result, no member of the royal family has testified in court since the 1890s. The royal was only a witness in that instance. This is the only instance in which a royal entered the case as both the claimant and the key witness, he claimed.