Meghan Markle reportedly failed to get citizenship in the United Kingdom despite moving to London in 2017 to marry Prince Harry.
A report from Us Weekly cites that the Duchess of Sussex did not stay in the U.K. long enough to start the process of her British citizenship since she moved back to the United States with the Duke of Sussex in 2020.
Meghan needed to stay in the U.K. for a minimum of three years to facilitate her citizenship. She arrived in the country in 2017, as the Sussexes announced their engagement that November. The couple married in May 2018 but by late 2019, Meghan and Harry were in and out of the country until March 2020 when they permanently settled in California.
Insiders said that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex intend to set their roots in Santa Barbara, where they bought a mansion to raise their kids in the quiet neighborhood of Montecito. The source also said that Harry doesn't regret uprooting his life to start a new path with Meghan as they enjoy the freedom of deciding for themselves and earning their own keep, as opposed to being working royals.
But the couple hasn't left the U.S. since the pandemic, despite making a promise to Queen Elizabeth that they will spend half of their time in the U.K. Because of this, an immigration expert has warned Harry that he has to fix his status with the U.S. in the next nine months to avoid a legal problem.
In an interview with Daily Star, David Lesperance said that foreigners "trapped" in the U.S. due to the pandemic crisis has had some relief from the IRS in the past year. However, the clock will run out on them, including the Duke of Sussex, by late summer.
Lesperance said that Harry has likely gotten advice from his lawyers about his situation as a British diplomat with an A-1 visa. But since he's no longer a working member of the royal family, he'll eventually lose this option. The expert said that Harry should fix his status sooner rather than later or face a huge tax bill from the American government.
This was also the warning of tax lawyer David Holtz after Harry reached his 183rd in the U.S. last year. On top of the U.S. federal taxes, the Duke of Sussex will also need to pay his California taxes.
In April 2020, royal sources told The Times that Harry will not apply for dual citizenship or an American green card as he will have to give up his allegiance to the Queen. If his visa as a British diplomat expires, Harry could still apply for an O-1 classification meant for individuals with "very high level of accomplishment" in their field of expertise.