Meghan and Prince Harry are set to take a joint parental leave lasting many months, royal biographer Omid Scobie said in the wake of claims the Duke and Duchess will be off work for 20 weeks. If confirmed, this move would mark a drastic difference with senior male royals based in the UK, who have traditionally returned to work soon after the birth of their children.
Appearing on Good Morning America, Mr Scobie said: “We’re so used to seeing senior royals going back to work but Harry and Meghan are leading by example.
“They offer up to 20 weeks parental leave at Archewell.
“It’ll be several months off work for the pair of them.”
Archewell is the organisation launched in late 2020 by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
On Sunday, the organisation’s website announced not just the birth of Meghan and Harry’s daughter but also the parents’ desire to take a joint leave.
A footnote following the statement on the baby’s arrival read: “While the Duke and Duchess are on parental leave, Archewell will continue to do important work and publish stories on the site.
“We look forward to seeing you!”
Working members of the Royal Family usually follow the same parental leave as British citizens.
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While mothers in the UK are normally off for six months, fathers take up two weeks for paternity.
Prince William took two weeks off following the birth of Prince George and Princess Charlotte.
But he was only away from royal duties for two days following the birth of Prince Louis.
Kate was also off for different periods of time after her three pregnancies.
The Duchess of Cambridge returned to work after just one month following the arrival of Prince George.
She then took off five and six months after the birth of Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis respectively.
Meghan and Prince Harry’s first few months following the birth of their daughter Lilibet ‘Lili’ Diana Mountbatten-Windsor are set to be very different from the ones that followed the arrival of their son Archie Harrison.
And this is not just because they are now non-working royal based in California.
Much like other members of the Royal Family, they did not take several months off together while they were living in Britain.
Meghan gave birth to Archie on May 6, 2019 and officially returned to work in September, four months later.
However, she interrupted her maternity leave in June to attend the Queen’s official birthday parade, Trooping the Colour.
Two years ago, it was also announced Prince Harry would take some time off with her wife and child, but three days later he travelled to The Hague to launch the 2020 Invictus Games.
Despite reports of a 20-week-long break from work, Prince Harry will likely decide to briefly interrupt his parental leave later this month to travel to the UK.
Prince Harry and Prince William announced last summer they had commissioned a statue of Princess Diana to be unveiled on July 1.
Over the past year, sources have been adamant Prince Harry has every intention to take part in the unveiling ceremony of the statue and will do the utmost to be in London on the day his mum would have turned 60.
The event, taking place in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace, will not just mark the princess’ birthday but also honour her life and legacy.