Prince Harry Has Considered Becoming A U.S. Citizen. Here's How That Would Impact His Royal Status

After Prince Harry married Meghan Markle, the couple moved to the United States, stepping down as senior members of the royal family in pursuit of a new life. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Harry considered becoming a U.S. citizen after moving to California and deciding to raise his family stateside. Harry has officially lived in the Golden State since March 2020, when he and Markle purchased a sprawling mansion in the swanky Montecito neighborhood. And while the father of two has returned to the UK on a handful of occasions, he seems happy with his decision to leave and isn't looking back.

In February 2024, the youngest son of King Charles and the late Princess Diana spoke about his time living in the U.S. "It's amazing. I love every single day," he told William Reeve on "Good Morning America." When Harry was asked if he "felt American" he responded, "Do I feel American? Um, no. I don't know how I feel." He then admitted that he was considering applying for citizenship but said it wasn't a "high priority" for him. If Harry were to apply for his citizenship, however, a few things would change.

Prince Harry would need to renounce his royal titles if he obtained U.S. citizenship

If Prince Harry were to apply for U.S. citizenship, there wouldn't be many loopholes for him to shorten the process. The Duke of Sussex would need to complete the process from start to finish, including sending in appropriate forms, undergoing a biometrics appointment, and being interviewed by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Aside from the numerous steps Harry would need to take to obtain dual citizenship, he would also have to forgo his royal titles if he went through with it. According to the Norris McLaughlin law firm, Harry would "be forced to expressly renounce any title or order of nobility he holds before he acquires U.S. citizenship, according to the Immigration and Nationalization Act."

As noted by the law firm, Harry's decision to leave the UK has already cost him to give up some of his royal patronages, though he has been permitted to keep his Duke of Sussex title. If he were to become a United States citizen, however, his dukedom would be scrapped, thanks to the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act.

Moreover, he would no longer be known as "Prince" Harry. He'd just be, well, Harry. Or Henry Charles Albert David Mountbatten-Windsor, to be precise.

Meghan Markle considered becoming a UK citizen

Though Meghan Markle married Prince Harry, she didn't automatically become a UK citizen after saying "I do" — but she was planning on it. Markle talked about studying for the UK citizenship test on an episode of her now-canceled "Archetypes" podcast. "That citizenship exam is so hard! I was studying for it, and I remember going, 'Oh my goodness.' I would ask my husband, 'Did you know this? Did you know this?' And people went, 'Oh, I had no idea,'" she shared. Markle did end up taking and passing the test but never obtained her citizenship because she left the UK before living there for three years, which is required.

For what it's worth, Markle and Harry's two kids, Archie and Lilibet, have dual citizenship thanks to their parents. In 2022, they both obtained the titles of Prince and Princess once their grandfather became king and are able to keep those titles because they automatically became citizens of both countries when they were born.