Prince Harry and Part 36 Offers – The Key Takeaway

In a landmark ruling, the High Court has recently made a significant decision regarding CPR (Civil Procedure Rules) Part 36 in the case of Duke of Sussex v MGN. This case, involving Prince Harry, formerly known as the Duke of Sussex, and Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN), has stirred considerable interest due to its implications for privacy rights and media intrusion.

The crux of the matter lies in the interpretation of CPR Part 36, a rule governing the procedure for making offers to settle disputes before trial. In this case, MGN made an offer to settle with the Duke of Sussex, which he accepted. However, MGN later sought to retract this offer, arguing that it was made in error and should not have been accepted.

The court’s decision hinged on the principle of whether MGN’s offer was a genuine attempt to settle the dispute or if it was made in error. After careful consideration, the court ruled that MGN’s offer was indeed a genuine attempt to settle and that they were bound by it. This decision underscores the importance of parties acting in good faith when making settlement offers under CPR Part 36.

Furthermore, the ruling reaffirms the significance of CPR Part 36 in promoting the efficient resolution of disputes and encouraging parties to engage in settlement negotiations. By upholding the validity of MGN’s offer, the court sends a clear message that parties must take their offers seriously and ensure they are made with careful consideration.

From a broader perspective, this decision has implications for both media organizations and individuals seeking redress for privacy violations. It reinforces the notion that privacy rights are paramount and that media outlets must exercise caution when reporting on private matters concerning public figures.

Overall, the Duke of Sussex v MGN case serves as a reminder of the importance of adhering to procedural rules, such as CPR Part 36, in the pursuit of justice and the resolution of disputes. It highlights the courts’ commitment to upholding the integrity of the legal process and ensuring fairness for all parties involved.

If you have any queries regarding any of the above, please get in touch with MSB’s Litigation Department on 0151 281 9040 or email David Tarttelin at

Contact us, we are here to help

We’re here to help, so please pick up the phone or drop us an email and one of our dedicated team will help with your enquiry.