Meghan Markle may have to return a lot of her birthday presents

Wait, WHAT?

Meghan Markle Effect
(Image credit: REX)

Wait, WHAT?

Meghan Markle turns 37 this week, seeing in her first birthday as a royal on Saturday. But how will she celebrate?

Well, like most elements of Meghan’s life as a Duchess, there are rules and regulations.

Yes, while having a royal title gives access, opportunity and of course the luxury of living in a palace, there is also a lot of duty that comes with the role, and a hefty rulebook to follow.

From wearing tights and not wearing black, to a ban on shellfish and tracksuits, Meghan has been brushing up on all royal rules and guidelines in her Princess lessons, and it seems that her birthday is no exception.

It emerged this month that the now Duchess is banned from having a lavish party as she welcomes in the big 3-7, a tradition encouraging royals to have small family celebrations instead.

But it emerged this week that there are even rules around the presents that Meghan is allowed to keep.

Yes, really.

(Image credit: REX/Shutterstock)

Now that she’s an official royal family member, palace guidelines will actually prevent the Duchess from accepting some of her presents, with unsolicited gifts from businesses, firms and celebrities being strictly forbidden.

In short, they’re not allowed to accept freebies to prevent them from being exploited for commercial purposes - a policy that saw the newlyweds forced to return over £7 million worth of wedding gifts.

‘Gifts offered by private individuals living in the UK not personally known to the Member of the Royal Family should be refused where there are concerns about the propriety or motives of the donor or the gift itself,’ the guidelines read.

So it looks like Meghan will be returning a lot of gifts this year, but either way, we’re sure Prince Harry will have planned something special for the big day.

Last year, the prince whisked Meghan off on a safari in Botswana, so it’s going to be a hard celebration to follow from home.

We hope Meghan has a very happy birthday.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.