After it’s been reported that the Queen will help Prince Andrew pay his settlement in the sex abuse case brought against him, we look at her finances and how she has accumulated her wealth
Prince Andrew has reached an out of court settlement with his accuser Virginia Giuffre after she filed a civil sex claim against him in the US.
The Duke of York will now pay a figure, thought to be around £12million, in order to settle the legal action. He has always denied allegations against him.
Now it has been claimed that Andrew’s mother, the Queen, will help her son in paying the costs.
The Telegraph reports that some of the agreed cash will come from his mother, with a source saying: “Walls were closing in fast. After his deposition, he would likely have been so damaged, no one could save him or agree to fund his settlement.” .”
So how much money does the Queen have and how does she have a vast personal wealth? Here we take a look…
The Queen’s net worth
According to the 2021 Sunday Times’ Rich List, the Queen has a net worth of £365million.
This is £15million more than the Sunday Times estimated her net worth to be in 2020.
In 2017, the Sunday Times also calculated the value of the entire Royal Family – which they estimated to be $88billion, which is about £71billion.
However, working out the Queen’s finances are far from simple, as there are many restrictions and technicalities on some of the things she has to her name.
queen’s pots of cash
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The Queen pays for her day-to-day life using three separate pots of cash – the Sovereign Grant, the Privy Purse and her personal money.
The Sovereign Grant is the money the government gives the Queen every year to support her work and is made up of taxpayer cash.
The Privy Purse is cash generated by the Duchy of Lancaster – a portfolio of land, property and other assets of about 18,000 hectares in England and Wales.
It has existed since 1399 to provide an income for the Sovereign – who is also known as the Duke of Lancaster.
AFP via Getty Images)
But the Queen can’t do what she wants with the Duchy – it is managed and run for her – but she receives all the net profits, which are millions of pounds each year.
This is generally considered to be her private income – although some republicans argue that it is money that would go to the Treasury if we didn’t have a monarchy (no Sovereign = no Duchy) and so should be considered public funds.
The Queen voluntarily pays income tax on profits.
She uses the money to pay for private and official expenditure – including meeting expenses of members of the royal family such as Andrew, Prince Edward and Princess Anne. She also uses it for the upkeep of Balmoral Castle.
According to one royal expert, if the Queen has helped out Andrew with the settlement it “more than likely would have come from the Duchy of Lancaster, which is described as the Queen’s private estate”.
Royal finances expert David McClure, author of Royal Privilege: The Queen’s True Worth, said the source of any settlement funds to Andrew is of “tremendous public interest”, and called for the royals to “come clean and say where the money came from” .
He said: “I just would argue in view of the enormous public interest in it, in view of the fact that Prince Andrew is a public figure, he was in line to the throne, I really think that they should disclose the amount of money and where it’s come from.”
Adding that he is “not optimistic” the information will be made public, Mr McClure said: “I wouldn’t be surprised if they try and not say anything, because there’s a long history of secrecy to do with anything involving the royal finances, but given that it’s a public matter, given there’s so much pubic interest in the matter, I really think for once the royal family should come clean and say where the money came from.”
Queen’s other assets
Many of the things Her Majesty owns, she owns as Sovereign on behalf of the nation rather than owning them personally.
For example, while she owns the Balmoral and Sandringham Estates personally having inherited them from her father, the official Royal residences – including Buckingham Palace – must be passed onto her successor.
This means Prince Charles will automatically own them, but again only as Sovereign, when the Queen dies.
The same rules apply to many of the art treasures in the Royal Collection and most famously, the Crown Jewels.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.