Tax man will be all over British royal baby

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. / AFP / FADEL SENNA

NEW YORK — Talk about being born with a silver spoon in your mouth: the royal baby of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will have a particularly glittery one.

And US tax authorities will be keen to know how much that utensil is worth.

That’s because the baby will have dual nationality: British because of his father and US from his American mother, whose official title is the duchess of Sussex.

“When one of the parents is American and has resided in the US for five years with at least two after the age of 14, the baby is automatically a citizen,” said David Treitel, founder of American Tax Returns, a consultancy for US expatriates living in Britain.

“This is the case with Meghan,” said Treitel, noting this case is a first in the British royal family.

US nationality comes with a bevy of restrictive conditions: like any American who is born, grows up and dies anywhere in the world, year after year Meghan and Harry’s child will have to show the Internal Revenue Service his or her tax status is clean.

From the moment of birth, money deposited in banks by the royal parents — eager to ensure a bright future for their progeny — must be duly reported to the tax man.

The same would apply to money that comes in if mom and dad decide, say, to have the child follow in the footsteps of his ex-actress mother to become a star on TV or in movies.

Forget about privacy, said Treitel. The IRS will “get to know a lot more about the couple’s wealth” through the tax returns of the couple and their mother. “A lot more information is gonna get to the US,” he added.

To wit: the IRS will demand that any valuable gifts from non-Americans to Harry and Meghan’s child — and he will be feted, won’t he? — also be declared as assets.

“Imagine the queen giving the baby some nice beautiful book of art from the royal collection, with paintings by Van Gogh or Miro. If this gift is worth more than $100,000, it is reportable,” said Treitel.