Succession to the throne
Members of the royal family who marry without permission of Parliament forfeit their right to succeed to the throne and their membership of the Royal House.
When the Prince of Orange becomes King, the children of Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien will be related to the monarch in the third degree. They will still be in line to succeed to the throne, but they will not be members of the Royal House. While their grandmother remains Queen, they are related to the monarch in the second degree, thus members of the Royal House.
The order of succession to the throne
The right to the throne passes to the eldest descendant of the monarch and, in turn, to his or her descendants. Accordingly, the first in line to the throne is currently the Prince of Orange and, after him, his children, Princess Catharina-Amalia being the eldest.
After the children of the heir apparent, the next in line to the throne is the next descendant of the monarch. As Prince Friso is no longer in line to succeed, Prince Constantijn is the first in line after the children of the Prince of Orange. After Prince Constantijn come his children, then the descendants of the previous monarch (Queen Juliana) up to and including relatives in the third degree of consanguinity.
The spouses of the monarch's relatives to the second degree are members of the Royal House, but are not in line of succession to the throne.
Current line of succession to the throne
- The Queen
- The Prince of Orange
- Princess Catharina-Amalia
- Princess Alexia
- Princess ArianePrince Constantijn
- Countess Eloise
- Count Claus-Casimir
- Countess Leonore
- Princess Margriet
- Prince Maurits
- Prince Bernhard
Prince Maurits and Prince Bernhard will no longer be eligible to succeed to the throne once the Prince of Orange becomes King.
Degrees of consanguinity
Under the Membership of the Royal House Act, membership of the Royal House is reserved to relatives of the monarch in the first and second degree of consanguinity and their spouses. Under the Constitution, succession to the throne is reserved to relatives of the monarch in the first, second and third degree of consanguinity.
The spouses of relatives of the monarch may never succeed to the throne. However, the spouses of relatives of the monarch in the first and second degree are members of the Royal House. Degrees of consanguinity express the distance from a shared ancestor, in either the direct or the collateral line.
The direct line runs as follows: great-grandparent, grandparent, parent, child. The distance from grandchild to grandparent is two degrees in the direct line, while that from parent to child is one degree. For example, Princess Catharina-Amalia is related to the present monarch in the second degree. When the Prince of Orange becomes King, she will be related to the monarch in the first degree.
A relationship in the collateral line involves more steps than one in the direct line. The degrees in the collateral line measure the distance to a brother or sister, an aunt or uncle or a cousin. Degrees in the collateral line are determined by counting back to the shared ancestor, and from there to the relatives in the collateral line (two steps means a relative in the second degree, three steps means a relative in the third degree). For example: Princess Margriet is related to the Queen in the second degree, and to the Prince of Orange in the third degree. There is no parent-child relationship, but the people in question share a parent/ancestor: Queen Juliana.
N.B. Brothers and sisters cannot be related in the first degree; that is only possible between parent and child.