What Prince Andrew's Future As A Royal Looks Like Following His Settlement

Prince Andrew has been caught up in a legal battle for months now following the arrest and prosecution of his former friend and convicted sex trafficker, Ghislaine Maxwell (via CNBC). The allegations against Prince Andrew by his accuser, Virginia Giuffre, claims she, "was regularly abused by Epstein and was lent out by Epstein to other powerful men for sexual purposes." Most notable of these men was Prince Andrew.

News broke on Tuesday that Prince Andrew and Giuffre had settled out of court (via NPR). David Boies, an attorney for Guiffre, claims that Prince Andrew will "make a substantial donation to Ms. Giuffre's charity in support of victims' rights," and the case will be dismissed within 30 days.

Court documents read, "Prince Andrew has never intended to malign Ms. Giuffre's character, and he accepts that she has suffered both as an established victim of abuse and as a result of unfair public attacks."

Now that the case has been settled, many are wondering what the future looks like for Prince Andrew, especially when it comes to his role in the royal family.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Life will not go back to normal for Prince Andrew

Before the case was settled, Prince Andrew was stripped of his military titles (via CNN). The statement released by the royal family read, "With The Queen's approval and agreement, the Duke of York's military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to The Queen. The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen."

According to People, royal experts believe that Prince Andrew will likely keep his title as the Duke of York, as well as his place in line for the succession of the throne, but that is all that will remain the same for the disgraced prince. The experts believe that Prince Andrew will no longer use the title "His Royal Highness" in any capacity.

On top of that, likely, Prince Andrew will not take on any public work. Documents read that Prince Andrew, "pledges to demonstrate his regret for his association with Epstein by supporting the fight against the evils of sex trafficking, and by supporting its victims." However, the damage has already been done. Royal life as he knew it has come to a close for Prince Andrew.

The settlement is not the end of Prince Andrew's lawsuit headlines

Prince Andrew doesn't believe he will disappear. Sources close to the prince told The Mirror he still "wholly maintains his innocence" and "believes he can still find a way back into public life." But it doesn't mean he'll be in the spotlight the way he wants to be.

As preparations for the Queen's platinum jubilee get under way, the Palace is focused on the future — a future that involves as little of the prince as possible. The Daily Mail reports the prince had been getting pressure from "senior royals" to put an end to the lawsuit before the Jubilee celebration.

Unfortunately for Andrew, and Buckingham Palace, news of this lawsuit will likely continue after the Jubilee. The Daily Mail reports Virginia Giuffre will be "banned from speaking publicly about her claims against Prince Andrew" until after the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations, a term that was agreed to in the settlement.

Giuffre did not have to sign a non-disclosure agreement as part of the settlement, meaning she is free to tell her story, but she can't until later this year. Once Giuffre does finally speak out, it's likely to dominate headlines in a way that would overshadow any other piece of royal news.

The FBI may also want more information about Prince Andrew's friends, Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell, The Mirror reports. Legal sources believe the prince could end up being a witness in further criminal inquiries.

Prince Andrew will be missing from the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations

While the lawsuit against him was taken care of before the Queen's Platinum Jubilee, sources are doubting Prince Andrew will be allowed to attend, even as a private citizen. There was even doubt he would even be able to attend the memorial service for Prince Philip, who died last year, but the Daily Mail is reporting Andrew will attend. It is expected to be the last public event the prince does with the rest of the royal family.

"People will understand that he would want to join the family at his father's memorial," says Royal expert Ingrid Seward. "But after that he will certainly have to lay low and just disappear for at least a year or two." But without a major image rehabilitation and admission of guilt, it's unlikely the public would ever be able to move past what Prince Andrew did, or his associations with someone like Jeffrey Epstein.

This means not only will the prince be missing from the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations, a Palace aide told the Daily Mail, but he also won't be at "formal events, nor would he be pictured on the balcony at Buckingham Palace for official events, and is unlikely to attend society accessions such as Royal Ascot."