Succession from the British Monarchy is governed by religion, inheritance, and gender. Under common law the Queen is the heir apparent to the throne of the House of England, succeeding her deceased husband the Prince of Wales. If the King is not alive or dead, then a successor can be chosen by the Sovereign. If there are no heirs, then the Sovereign may appoint a deputy or his High Chamberlain. In Scotland, Wales, Ireland and the Isle of Man, there are also special bodies that provide a legal avenue for the Sovereign’s successors, called Regent Regents, to select an heir.
Succession by way of marriage to the Monarch’s direct offspring is usually referred to as “concurrent succession” in legal terminology. Under common law, a Queen’s son may choose her daughter-in-law, as long as the son does not have more than half of the line’s male heirs. The line of the Royal Family in the United Kingdom consists of the Queen, Prince and Princess of Wales, Earl and Countess of Wessex, Lord and Lady Mountbatten-Windsor, the Duke of York and Earl and Countess of Wessex. If either of these Royal Family members dies, then another member of the family may succeed them to become the Sovereign.
As the Sovereign’s representative, they are responsible for maintaining and protecting the rights, privileges and immunities of the Monarchy.
Sovereign of England and Scotland
A King and Queen are naming the “Sovereign of England and Scotland” because they hold the hereditary right to the throne. There are two classes of hereditary monarchs, the Elective and the hereditary. If you are born within the Elective class and the Elective line has no female members, then you are still able to become a Sovereign, but you must pass the hereditary test. Otherwise, you will need to pass the Elective test in order to become a Sovereign.
Both male and female members of the Elective class have the right to become hereditary monarchs. Male members of the Elective class cannot become hereditary crowns; however, female members have the same right as male members to become hereditary crowns. There are also exceptions for children born into the Elective class who may become a Sovereign, but it is generally rare.
The hereditary class is divided into two. The first class has the largest number of members and the second class has the fewest members. The first class of hereditary monarchs consists of the members of the House of Windsor (the daughters of the present and former Princesses); the next, second and third class have members who are members of the House of Windsor and Princes in the same name; and, lastly, those who are members of the Royal House of Windsor.
The first class of hereditary monarchs, in terms of size, also includes the Princess Royal, Prince Charles, the Princesses of York, Cornwall and Northumberland, and the Princesses of Scotland are the largest; while, in terms of members, only the Princes of York, Cornwall, and Northumberland are the smallest.
If the Sovereign dies without leaving any heirs, then there are three options available for the Crown. They include: the Sovereign’s Will, which is accepted by the Queen, who sign a letter of appointment to be the Protector of the Sovereign’s estate, and the Protector, or the Sovereign’s Commissioners, appointed by the Sovereign to hold office until the Sovereign’s death; the Crown in Place of the Sovereign, who are appointed to govern the affairs of the crown; and the Crown in Place of the Crown Prince, who holds the regency when the Sovereign dies.
The Crown Prince is the most important event during British Monarchy Succession, because he is the one who represents the crown. He is the most powerful person in the Kingdom, as well as the ruler of the country. In terms of succession, the succession of the Sovereign’s crown depends on the following conditions: the Sovereign’s will, if he has one, and the Protector’s commission; the Protector’s commission, if he does not have one; the Protector’s commission if the Protector dies; and, finally, if the Protector dies.