Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, has officially changed his country of residence from the United Kingdom to the United States in recent business filings, marking a significant shift in his ties to his homeland four years after stepping back from royal duties. The move, which comes amid ongoing legal battles and deportation concerns, has raised questions about his ability to continue serving as a Counsellor of State, a role that allows him to deputize for the Monarch.

According to documents filed with Companies House, the UK's registrar of companies, Prince Harry updated his personal details in connection with Travalyst, his eco-tourism non-profit. The filings, which became public on Wednesday, list his "New Country/State Usually Resident" as the United States, a change from the previously recorded United Kingdom.

The timing of the change, cited as June 29, 2023, coincides with the day Buckingham Palace confirmed that Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, had officially moved out of Frogmore Cottage, their former UK residence. The couple lost access to the property last year after being evicted by the royal family, leaving them without a permanent base in Britain.

The decision to list the US as his primary residence suggests a renewed commitment to the Sussexes' new life in California and a lack of urgency to replace Frogmore Cottage. In a 2022 interview with NBC, Harry stated, "Home for me, now, for the time being, is in the States. And it really feels that way, as well. We've been welcomed with open arms and have got such a great community up in Santa Barbara."

However, the move has raised concerns about Harry's ability to continue serving as a Counsellor of State, a role that requires a UK domicile by law. Dr. Craig Prescott, an expert on constitutional law, noted last year that the situation is unprecedented, stating, "We are really in uncharted waters here: the Prince Harry situation is not something the law easily allows for."

The change in residence also comes as pressure mounts on the US government to release Harry's visa records, following comments made by the American ambassador to London suggesting that the prince would not be deported while President Joe Biden was in office. The conservative Heritage Foundation think tank in Washington, D.C., has gone to court to seek the release of the file, citing the ambassador's remarks as part of its case.

Questions about Harry's visa status have arisen due to his admission of past drug use in his memoir, "Spare." Under US law, admitting to drug use can be grounds for blocking a visa application. The Heritage Foundation has been pushing the Department of Homeland Security to open its dossier on Harry under America's freedom of information laws.

The prince's relationship with the UK has been complicated in recent years. He unsuccessfully appealed against the British government to have his police protection team reinstated, affirming his commitment to the country of his birth in the process. However, he later stated that the lack of police protection made it too dangerous for him and his family to return to the UK.

The loss of Frogmore Cottage has further strained Harry's ties to the UK, as the property provided not only a home but also a level of security within the police cordon surrounding Windsor Castle. The couple had their police protection team stripped away when they stepped back from royal duties, making Frogmore an oasis of de facto police protection.

As the situation continues to unfold, the implications of Harry's change in residence remain uncertain. The move has raised questions about his future role within the royal family and his ability to fulfill his duties as a Counsellor of State. It has also fueled ongoing legal battles and deportation concerns, with the release of his visa records potentially shedding light on the process by which he was granted entry to the United States.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's decision to make the US their primary residence marks a significant shift in their relationship with the UK and the royal family. As they continue to navigate their new life in California, the coming months and years will likely bring further developments and challenges as they seek to establish their place in both the US and the UK.