A judge has declared that Meghan Markle did not defame her half sister, Samantha Markle. Samantha’s lawsuit against the Suits alum was dismissed on March 12, 2024.

Why Was Meghan Markle Sued by Her Half Sister Samantha Markle?

Samantha sued Meghan in March 2022, one year after the former royal and her husband, Prince Harry, sat down for an interview on CBS. She claimed that Meghan made “false and malicious statements” about her during the interview. 

Specifically, Samantha claimed that Meghan didn’t tell the truth about when they last saw each other and lied about being an “only child.” She also accused her sibling of lying about her childhood so that she could sell a “rags-to-royalty narrative” in the press. Samantha asked for $75,000 in damages. 

In the CBS interview, Meghan revealed that she hadn’t seen her sister in “at least 18, 19 years,” and said, “I grew up as an only child, which everyone who grew up around me knows, and I wished I had siblings. I would have loved to have had siblings.” She also pointed out that Samantha didn’t change her last name back to Markle until she was in her early 50s. “[It was] only when I started dating Harry,” Meghan explained. “So, I think that says enough.”

Samantha claimed that Meghan’s comments affected the sales of her autobiography and alleged that she was not able to find work because of the interview.

Meghan responded to Samantha’s filing in June 2022 and requested that Samantha’s lawsuit be dismissed. “We do not empanel juries to rule on whether two people are ‘close’ or whether one genuinely feels that they ‘grew up as an only child,’” Meghan’s lawyers wrote in the response documents. “Courts are not equipped to adjudicate the legitimacy of a person’s feelings about their childhood and relationships. Nor should they be.”

Her lawyer also called the lawsuit “baseless and absurd” in a statement to TMZ.

Why Was Samantha Markle’s Lawsuit Against Meghan Markle Dismissed?

The judge found that Samantha “failed to identify any statements that could support a claim of defamation or defamation-by-implication by this point,” according to documents obtained by Page Six. The conclusion specified that there were no specific instances of defamation in the CBS interview, the Netflix series Meghan & Harry, or the royal family biography Finding Freedom

Samantha’s lawsuit was dismissed “with prejudice,” so she cannot level the claim again. As noted in the court documents, this was already Samantha’s “third try at amending her complaint.” 

The judge pointed out that Meghan and Harry’s comments about Samantha in the CBS interview were “quintessential examples of opinion” and said that the Los Angeles native “mischaracterized” the interview transcript in her filing. 

Who Is Meghan Markle’s Half Sister Samantha Markle?

Meghan and Samantha share the same father, Thomas Markle. The ladies’ relationship has been strained for years and Samantha did not attend Meghan’s wedding to Prince Harry in 2018. Despite the estrangement, Samantha has not shied away from talking about Meghan in the press.

“My half sister, who I hadn’t seen for over a decade – and that was only for a day and a half – suddenly, it felt like she was everywhere,” Meghan said in her and Harry’s 2022 Netflix docuseries. “I don’t know your middle name. I don’t know your birthday. You’re telling these people that you raised me and you’ve coined me ‘Princess Pushy.’”

Meghan was just two years old when her parents separated and she admitted that she didn’t recall Samantha being around when she was at her dad’s house as a child. “The last time that I saw her, that I remember, is when I was in my early twenties,” she claimed. “I hadn’t had a fallout with her. We didn’t have a closeness to be able to have that. And I wanted a sister.”

However, Samantha has insisted that she and Meghan “had a close relationship until 2018.” 

Despite Meghan and Samantha not being close, the former blogger did develop a relationship with Samantha’s daughter, Ashleigh, who was raised by her grandparents. “[When Meghan and Harry started dating,] Samantha pretty quickly began expressing a lot of angry words about Meg towards me,” Ashleigh said. “What was communicated to me was maybe some resentment. Some people you just can’t reason with.”

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