As a casual observer, it seemed the Duke and Duchess of Sussex had the world on a string. They had their food, shelter, clothing and security needs met and had steady jobs as members of the British royal household. Apparently this was not so, as we found out recently when the couple announced their cut from royal ties. They wanted to seek a new niche in North America and find financial independence.

Turning their backs on the royals reminded some observers of the time Edward VIII renounced the throne to marry Wallis Simpson.

Meghan Markle has not been all that successful in her relationships, but maybe she can help Prince Harry meet his new goals outside the royal umbrella.

This announcement, made without first discussing it with the queen, may prove more costly than all the money the couple expects to make from books, lectures, private charities, etc.

The royal family is known as that of Queen Elizabeth and her relatives. The family is funded by a parliamentary annuity. The family carries out over 2,000 official engagements in the United Kingdom and world yearly. These engagements include state funerals, garden parties, receptions, greetings to armed forces and other social events. Some members of the family have their own charities, and it is expected Prince Harry will use this as one means to becoming financially independent.

Meghan Markle has returned to Canada, and Prince Harry is in the United Kingdom discussing this move with members of the royal family. It is the couple’s announced decision to split their time between North America and the United Kingdom, and to honor duty to Queen Elizabeth.

It will be interesting to see how this bombshell announcement evolves.

Whatever Meghan and Harry do will have to be done in intense media scrutiny and this will be challenging. Being only “part-time royals” may also be more difficult than expected.

As of Jan. 14, Queen Elizabeth had indicated support for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to their split between Canada and the United Kingdom. The queen understands their desire to be independent and still loyal to the royal family. Details relating to their security and finances are being worked out.

May the couple achieve success and live happily ever after! Isn’t this what royals are expected to do?

Jack Simpson is a former educator, a veteran, an author and a law enforcement officer. His column appears each week in the weekend edition of this newspaper.

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