A former aide to the Duchess of Sussex spoke to her father "repeatedly" as he tried to offer support, lawyers have claimed.
Jason Knauf, who was Harry and Meghan’s communications secretary, was trying to protect Thomas Markle from "media intrusion", his lawyers said in a letter to the Mail On Sunday’s legal team.
His assistance continued to be offered "even after the Mail On Sunday reported that Mr Markle had allegedly been co-operating with press photographers" shortly before the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s wedding, the note added.
The information is contained in a letter rebutting allegations made by the newspaper’s publisher, Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL), that Mr Knauf co-wrote a letter Meghan sent to her 76-year-old father, parts of which it printed.
That would mean the letter belonged to the Crown, ANL argued.
But Mr Knauf’s lawyers, Addleshaw Goddard, said their client "made only a very minor suggestion on the text of the letter".
Meghan did send Mr Knauf a "series of text messages in August 2018" about a draft of the letter – which she composed on her mobile phone before transcribing it by hand – his lawyers admitted.
Their letter said: "Given that Mr Knauf was a trusted adviser who had spoken to Mr Markle repeatedly and supported the duchess by trying to protect her father from media intrusion, there was nothing unusual about her asking for his opinion on the electronic draft."
Addleshaw Goddard added that "Mr Knauf did not suggest any specific wording".
Yesterday, the Duchess won her copyright claim against ANL.
Regarding Mr Knauf’s efforts on behalf of her father, his lawyers wrote: "From 2016, Mr Knauf led extensive efforts to protect the privacy and reputation of the duchess and, as and when directed by her, the privacy of her parents.
"This included drafting a press statement in November 2016, issued in his own name, condemning racist and sexist coverage of Ms Markle, as she then was, and other regular interventions – directly to media and through the Independent Press Standards Organisation (Ipso) – to request privacy both for her and for her parents."
Mr Knauf was also "involved in providing advice and offering support with a view to protecting her father from media intrusion", including "many conversations with Mr Markle and a number of interventions, through Ipso and directly with publications, to object to intrusions into Mr Markle’s privacy", the letter added.
"Mr Knauf and his colleagues made significant efforts over many months to protect Mr Markle and to object to intrusions into his privacy, in addition to the steps that were regularly taken to object to coverage of the duchess herself, where this was perceived to be unfair or untrue," it continued.