The Duchess of Sussex's legal team will go to court in London on Thursday to argue for a summary judgment rather than a full trial

By Simon Perry
October 28, 2020 12:41 PM
Advertisement

Meghan Markle is asking a judge to decide on her legal case against the Mail on Sunday rather than having to face a trial.

Lawyers for the Duchess of Sussex are also asking for the trial date to be delayed as her team faces additional work after the recent inclusion in the case of the book, Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family, written by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand.

The Duchess of Sussex's legal team will go to court in London on Thursday to argue for a summary judgment rather than a full trial that is due to start on January 11. Meghan’s legal team is making the application for a summary judgment because they are confident in their case.

Meghan Markle
| Credit: Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty

Meghan, 39, is suing the Mail on Sunday’s publishers Associated Newspapers for invasion of privacy, infringement of data protection rights and copyright infringement for printing extracts of a “private and confidential” letter sent to her father, Thomas Markle, in August 2018 — three months after her wedding to Prince Harry.

On September 29, Meghan lost a bid to stop the biography from being used as evidence in the lawsuit after the judge concluded that Associated Newspapers could use the book in the case.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

The book — which features interviews with friends of the couple — explores the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's journey, from the early days of their fast-moving romance to the intense tabloid scrutiny they faced and ultimately to their decision to step down as senior royals and move to Los Angeles.

Associated Newspapers' lawyers had argued that Finding Freedom should be included in their defense on the basis that Meghan had "lost her rights to privacy in the contents of the letter" because "she and her husband cooperated with the authors” of Finding Freedom to put forward ‘their version of events."

A spokesperson for the couple previously said in a statement, “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not interviewed and did not contribute to Finding Freedom. This book is based on the authors’ own experiences as members of the royal press corps and their own independent reporting.”

Can't get enough of PEOPLE's Royals coverage? Sign up for our free Royals newsletter to get the latest updates on Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle and more!

A trial would potentially set Meghan up against her father in a courtroom in London. Other witnesses, possibly including some of her close friends, could also be called upon to give evidence. But a trial will not be necessary if they win their argument for a summary judgment, on which much of the future of the case now pivots.