Recently Prince Archie, son of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex Harry and Meghan, has moved to 6th in line to the British throne.
This brings into force for him an ancient law that requires the first 6 in line to ask permission from the Crown before marrying.
This Succession to the Crown Act, as amended in 2013, replaced the Royal Marriages Act of 1772 which prevented marriages without royal consent.
Could the Succession Act affect Prince Archie’s wedding?
The Succession to the Crown Act, in effect since 2015, states that the first 6 in line to the throne must seek authorization from the monarch before marrying.
Failure to do so would exclude both that person and any children born of that marriage from succession.
Archie, having moved to sixth place after the proclamation of Charles III, is now subject to this rule.
Previously, the Royal Marriages Act of 1772 invalidated in the UK any royal marriage without the king’s consent, in an attempt to avoid unions inconvenient to the monarchy.
The current law is less strict, limiting this obligation to only the first 6, but equally binding.
The formal process obliges the petition to be signed under the Great Royal Seal, declared in Council, and registered with the Privy Council.
Experts point out that this request would be a mere formality for Archie, given the new attitudes towards royal marriages.
Although Prince Archie currently lives in the US with his parents away from royalty, his place in the line of succession to the British throne makes him subject to compliance with the Law of Succession.
“However, the monarch’s permission can, in this case as he is sixth in line to the throne, be taken for granted. It would simply be a technicality,” royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams asserted.