Buckingham Palace issued a statement on Friday confirming the news, noting that Harry and his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, had spoken about the decision. Queen Elizabeth shared that 36-year-old Harry and 39-year-old Meghan would be giving up their royal patronages, as well as his honorary military appointments.
A source close to Harry tells ET that he's disappointed he can't retain his honorary military appointments. As for Harry's relationship with his older brother, the source says that "it's not where it once was."
"However, they are brothers and will support each other and are committed to coming together to honor their late mother's legacy," the source says.
As for when Harry will return to England to see his family, the source says it's all up in the air.
"The Sussexes would have definitely been back and forth somewhat already but of course the pandemic changed things," the source says. "When the world opens up again, there will be plans to return and all the rest of it. We just don't know at the moment."
The Sunday Times reported on Sunday that 38-year-old William is "really sad and genuinely shocked" about how his brother chose to exit royal life, particularly, Harry and Meghan's statement pushing back on the Queen's statement. The Queen's statement read in part, "Following conversations with The Duke, The Queen has written confirming that in stepping away from the work of The Royal Family it is not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service." Harry and Meghan's statement pointedly referenced the Queen's message, reading in part, "We can all live a life of service. Service is universal." According to the British newspaper, William finds Harry and Meghan's behavior "insulting and disrespectful" and is upset about the situation.
Meanwhile, a second royal source tells ET that conversations with Prince Harry and members of the royal family about his patronages started late last year and were primarily done by letter, and Harry was informed of the decision earlier this month. According to the source, Harry discussed matters with the Queen over the phone and the rest of the discussions were done via written communication.
"The review is now complete," the source says. "Ultimately it was for the Queen and the Palace to make a determination as to who is the patron for the Royal roles."
However, several of Harry and Meghan's charities and patronages announced their plans to continue working with the duke and duchess even after their exit, such as the Invictus Games Foundation, which helps wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel and their associated veterans. The organization released a statement regarding Harry's involvement, which reads, "We are proud to have the Duke of Sussex as our patron. The Invictus Games was founded by him, it has been built on his ideas, and he remains fully committed to both the Games and to the Invictus Games Foundation."
For more on Harry and Meghan's royal exit, watch the video below.