Prince Philip's will to be sealed, remain private for 90 years, rules London High Court
On April 9, Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, who had been married to the 95-year-old British queen for almost seven decades, died at the age of 99 at his wife's Windsor Castle home west of London.
According to a judge at London's High Court, to safeguard the monarch's dignity, the will of Prince Philip, the late husband of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, will be sealed and kept secret for at least 90 years, according to safeguard the monarch's dignity. On April 9, Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, who had been married to the 95-year-old British queen for almost seven decades, died at the age of 99 at his wife's Windsor Castle home west of London. Andrew McFarlane, the court's Family Division president, said he had agreed that Philip's will should be sealed "and that no copy of the will should be created for the record or retained on the court file," in keeping with a tradition dating back to 1910.
He also agreed with the request "to remove the estate's worth from the grant of probate." In a judgement issued on Thursday, McFarlane stated, "The degree of exposure that publication would be expected to draw would be quite wide and entirely opposed to the goal of protecting the Sovereign's dignity." He said that once a senior royal died, an application to seal the will was submitted to the president of the Family Division, with such hearings and rulings kept confidential.
The judge stated that 90 years should elapse after probate is granted before the will is unsealed in private before publication, a period he deemed "proportionate and adequate." According to him, Prince Francis of Teck, the younger brother of George V's wife Queen Mary, was the first royal whose will was sealed. He claimed to be the keeper of a safe that contained more than 30 envelopes holding the wills of deceased royals. Following the deaths of Queen Elizabeth's mother, Elizabeth, and her sister, Princess Margaret, the most recent additions were added in 2002, he stated.