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Meghan Markle wins High Court battle with Daily Mail over letter to estranged father


Meghan Markle wins High Court battle with Daily Mail over letter to estranged father


Meghan Markle has won the last of her copyright claims against a British publisher for publishing a confidential letter she sent to her father.

According to the BBC’s Joseph Lee and the PA news service, a judge at the High Court in London ruled in Meghan Markle’s favour in a trademark dispute against a British tabloid on Wednesday.

Meghan Markle has been involved in a series of legal proceedings including invasions of her privacy. She sued the publishers of The Mail and MailOnline in one of the proceedings. In 2018, the media reported stories containing excerpts from her private letter to her father, Thomas Markle. She alleged that the media companies have “misused her private information, infringed copyright, and breached the Data Protection Act” in the lawsuit, according to Variety.

The Mail and MailOnline’s attorneys countered Meghan’s assertion by claiming that the letter was co-authored by Jason Knauf, who worked as a marketing operationalist for the Sussexes at the time, and that the copyright “belonged to the Crown.” Jason, on the other hand, denied being a participant of the letter. Furthermore, the Queen’s attorneys claimed that they did not deem the letter to be Crown property.

Taking both of the circumstances into account, Lord Justice Warby issued a definitive judgment in Meghan’s favor, excluding the matter from proceeding to trial. The UK High Court had already ruled that Meghan had a fair expectation that the contents of the letter would remain confidential.



The High Court heard on Wednesday that Knauf “emphatically” denied co-authoring Meghan’s letter to her father, according to the BBC.

Meghan’s lawyer, Ian Mill, informed the High Court that the new decision in her favor “gives the lie” to The Mail on Sunday’s claim that she was using the letter as part of a “media strategy.”

Judge Mark Warby awarded summary judgement after considering the claims.

Earlier this year, Warby called the publishing of the 39-year-old’s letter to her father Thomas Markle “unlawful”

The Duchess of Sussex had already won the most of her claims in February, when the court awarded her summary judgement, which meant she didn’t have to go to trial.


Markle had sued Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL), the publishers of The Mail on Sunday and MailOnline, for reprinting large portions of her handwritten letter in five stories in 2018.

ANL protested that Markle was not the rightful owner of the copyright after the court found in her favour on misuse of confidential details and copyright infringement.

This assertion has been dismissed by the high court.

The duchess previously told Insider that she was “grateful to the courts for holding Associated Newspapers and The Mail on Sunday to account for their illegal and dehumanizing practices.” after her legal victory in February.

When Insider reached out to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex for feedback on this story, they declined.

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