On Saturday, Jan. 30, The Sun claimed that she had "taken the unprecedented action of removing" her first and middle names, Rachel Meghan, from the document so that it included just her title, "Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Sussex," under the "mother" category. On Sunday, Jan. 31, a spokesperson for Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex disputed the report.
"The change of name on public documents in 2019 was dictated by The Palace, as confirmed by documents from senior Palace officials," the spokesperson said in a statement to E! News. "This was not requested by Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex nor by The Duke of Sussex."
Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the matter when reached by E! News.
The Sun's report included an image of a Jan. 21 copy of an official document that states that Meghan's name was removed from the birth certificate in June 2019 on the authority of the Registrar General. It also states that Harry's name and title was also changed from "His Royal Highnness Henry Charles Albert David Duke of Sussex" to "His Royal Highness Prince Henry Charles Albert David Duke of Sussex."
The Sun reported that the name changes were made amid reports of a rift between the Duke of Sussex and his brother Prince William. It was later confirmed there were tensions between them. The Sun said the birth certificate edit could be seen as a snub to William and wife Kate Middleton, whose formal name Catherine is listed on their three children's birth certificates.
"To see this U.K. tabloid and their carnival of so-called 'experts' chose to deceptively whip this into a calculated family 'snub' and suggest that she would oddly want to be nameless on her child's birth certificate, or any other legal document, would be laughable were it not offensive," Meghan's spokesperson continued. "There's a lot going on in the world; let's focus on that rather than creating clickbait."
The Sun also reported that the name change could also be viewed as Harry aligning Meghan with his late mother Princess Diana. She used the title "Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales" on the princes' birth certificates, also without her name.
In spring 2020, Meghan and Harry's departure as working members of the royal family took effect. As part of their exit agreement, the couple agreed to give up their "Royal Highness" titles, just as Diana did when she divorced Harry and William's father, Prince Charles.