Although fans were shocked when Meghan Markle and Prince Harry announced their plan to “step back” as senior royals, Kate Middleton was reportedly relieved she wouldn’t have to cross paths with her sister-in-law.

Since the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s announcement, royal experts have claimed Kate has become more confident and stepped out of Prince William’s shadow.

Ingrid Seward told The Mirror that while Kate didn’t feel threatened by Meghan, the Duchess of Cambridge is relieved the “Suits” star has relocated to Canada.

“The recent fall-out between Harry and William would have been draining for her, so she’s probably feeling a huge weight off her shoulders that she doesn’t have to worry about Meghan’s influence anymore,” she explained.

The royal commentator claimed that Prince Harry and Meghan’s absence has strengthened Queen Elizabeth’s relationship with Kate. “The Queen is very reliant on Kate because she’s so stable – and she’s simply untouchable in everything she does at the moment. She’s delighted with her,” Seward said.

Meanwhile, body language expert Judi James noted that Kate’s appearance at the BAFTAs showed that the 38-year-old is embracing her high ranking position in the royal family.

“It has been a perfect storm for the Royal Family lately, but Kate has now taken on the biggest power position in the entire Firm. She’s the new matriarch because while the Queen is strong, she’s getting older and needs that kind of support from someone she can trust,” James stated

“In the early days, she would hide herself in William’s shadow, but it was clear from her appearance at the Baftas that all of that has totally changed. She’s not remotely dependent on him anymore.”

Rather than allowing Meghan and Prince Harry’s exit to send the royal family into a downward spiral, James claimed Kate and Prince William have picked up the slack.

“Seeing them hold court with superstars, it was obvious they have shifted into real power couple mode. It’s ironic, as that’s the path Harry and Meghan were meant to take, but Kate looks incredibly at ease in this new role.”

Meghan and Prince Harry are expected to step down as working royals in spring 2020.

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge are pictured attending the EE British Academy Film Awards on Feb. 02, 2020 in London, England. Jeff Gilbert - WPA Pool / Getty Images