The government has reached an agreement with all other Commonwealth countries to change the laws which put men ahead of women in the line of royal succession. This means Will and Kate’s first child will be monarch regardless of gender.
This change reverses laws dating back more than 300 years. Previously the eldest son would succeed as monarch irrespective whether he had an elder sister. It was only the case where there are no sons, as in the case of the Queen’s father George VI, where the crown passes to the eldest daughter.
Although this does not directly influence any of our lives Nick Clegg described the realms’ consent as “a historic moment for our country and our monarchy.”
He said: “We can also all celebrate that whether the baby is a boy or a girl, they will have an equal claim to the throne.”
Australia’s Prime Minister Julia Gillard said it was an extraordinary moment. She said the changes appeared to be straightforward. “But just because they seem straightforward to our modern minds doesn’t mean that we should underestimate their historical significance, changing as they will for all time the way in which the monarchy works and changing its history.”
So as we look forward to the birth of a child who will one day be our King or Queen please also remember if you are having a baby to keep your Will up to date. Your Will is the place that you can appoint guardians to take care of your little ones should anything happen to you.
At Crane & Staples we are happy to review your Will with you.