KEY POINTS

  • Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's lawyers sent the BBC a letter calling a report on their daughter's name "defamatory"
  • The BBC report claimed they did not discuss baby Lilibet's name with Queen Elizabeth before it was announced
  • Their lawyers also sent the letter to other U.K. media outlets warning that the claims in the report "should not be repeated"

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have rejected the claims made in a report that they did not consult Queen Elizabeth II before bestowing her childhood nickname, Lilibet, on their daughter.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex named their baby girl, whom they welcomed last week, Lilibet Diana Mountbatten-Windsor after Prince Harry's grandmother and his mom Princess Diana. However, BBC reported that they "never asked" the Queen's permission before announcing it.

Prince Harry and Markle's lawyers at Schillings sent the BBC a legal letter calling royal correspondent Jonny Dymond's report "false and defamatory," Deadline reported. The letter, which warned that allegations within the article "should not be repeated," was also sent to other U.K. broadcasters and publishers, according to the BBC.

In a statement to multiple outlets, including the BBC, a spokesperson for Prince Harry and Markle said the Queen was the first person the duke had told about their desire to name their daughter Lilibet and that the royal couple would not have used the name if they had not received his grandmother's permission.

"The duke spoke with his family in advance of the announcement - in fact his grandmother was the first family member he called," the spokesperson said.

"During that conversation, he shared their hope of naming their daughter Lilibet in her honor. Had she not been supportive, they would not have used the name," the statement continued.

The name Lilibet is significant because it stems from Queen Elizabeth's childhood when the then-princess was unable to properly pronounce her own name. Her grandfather, King George V, called her by the nickname, and it was eventually used by the rest of the royal family.

During his April 17 funeral, the Queen also signed the handwritten card she placed on top of Prince Philip's coffin with "Lilibet."

In the BBC report, the royal correspondent quoted an unnamed palace source as saying that Prince Harry and Markle did not consult the Queen about their plans to name their daughter after her.

"The source disputed reports in the wake of the announcement of the name that Prince Harry and Meghan had spoken to the Queen before the birth," the report said.

Dymond has updated his report on the BBC website to reflect the Sussexes' statement but did not change or remove its original claim that the couple "never asked." The correspondent's tweets about the story also have not been deleted.

This came a month after Markle won her final copyright claim against Mail on Sunday over the private letter she sent to her estranged father, Thomas Markle Sr., that was published by the outlet in 2019.

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry and Queen Elizabeth LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 26: Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Queen Elizabeth II at the Queen's Young Leaders Awards Ceremony at Buckingham Palace on June 26, 2018 in London, England. Photo: John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty Images