Celebrity | Royals

Prince Harry And Meghan Markle's Baby Can Become An American, But There's A Catch

Kensington Palace/Instagram

On October 15, Kensington Palace made the announcement we've all been waiting for - Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are expecting their first baby!

While the new addition to the royal family won't be here until Spring, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will have to make several plans involving their little one.

Along with choosing a fitting name for their child - it's rumored they plan on calling the baby Diana if it's a girl - the royal couple need to decide if their child will have dual citizenship in both the United Kingdom and United States.

The Criteria

Although the palace reported Meghan planned on becoming a British citizen following her marriage to Harry, a source told PEOPLE it was "too early to say" if the Suits alum would denounce her American citizenship once the lengthy process is completed.

According to the US Travel Department, a baby born abroad in wedlock to a American and a person belonging to a foreign country or nation is entitled to US citizenship if their American parent meets certain credentials.

The department states that the child can be granted American citizenship if the US citizen parent has been "physically present in the US or one of its outlying possessions for five years prior to the person’s birth, at least two of which were after the age of fourteen."

But, there's a catch.

Should the newlyweds chose to make their baby an American citizen, TMZ reports they wouldn't retain it automatically.

Harry and Meghan would have to sign "special paperwork" in order to make it official, and have up until their child's 18th birthday to decide on the matter.

Should this occur, the future royal would not only be seventh in line for the British throne, but will also be eligible to become the President of the United States.

Prince Harry with former President George W. Bush
Prince Harry with former President George W. BushDefense Department photo/EJ Hersom

Whether or not Meghan and Harry's baby will be the first royal to have duel citizenship, they will still make history in a very exciting way - the Duke and Duchess' child will be the first member of the royal family of mixed heritage.

"It is so beautiful at every level."

Although historians have suggested that Queen Charlotte - who earned her royal title when she married King George III in the 18th century - was the UK's first black or biracial queen, it's still unproven if the rumors have any merit to them.

Queen Charlotte
Queen CharlotteWikimedia Commons

However, Meghan's mother Doria Ragland is black and in 2015, the former Deal or No Deal model wrote a piece for Elle magazine, where she explained how proud she was to be mixed-race.

"While my mixed heritage may have created a grey area surrounding my self-identification, keeping me with a foot on both sides of the fence, I have come to embrace that. To say who I am, to share where I’m from, to voice my pride in being a strong, confident mixed-race woman," she told the publication.

"That when asked to choose my ethnicity in a questionnaire as in my seventh grade class, or these days to check ‘Other,’ I simply say: ‘Sorry, world, this is not Lost and I am not one of The Others. I am enough exactly as I am.'"

While Meghan and the maternal side of her family must be thrilled about having a mixed-race child join the succession to the throne, they're not the only ones.

Tessy Ojo, who is the chief executive of the Diana Award and guest at Meghan and Harry's wedding, spoke to People about her excitement.

"It is so beautiful at every level," Tessy said. "It is has so many stories to it. And it all continues from the wedding. We all can’t wait to see what the baby will be and what the baby will look like, what this beautiful gorgeous bundle will look like."

Of course, Tessy isn't the only one to voice her delight over the upcoming arrival.

Family Reactions

While the royal family and the Markles are both said to be thrilled with the baby news, it's Meghan's father and sister who are the most outspoken - even though they're estranged.

Although Samantha Markle has been known to criticize Meghan, she sang a different tune when she heard about her famous sister's bun in the oven.

"I'm so excited, I'm so happy for you and I really, really am sorry for any of the past tension and confusion and misunderstandings and asinine things I've said when I just didn't understand what was going on and I wanted things to work out for my dad,"  Samantha told the Daily Mail.

"But this is just a great time for you guys and Meg, I love you. Congratulations to both of you. Let's just let it all go and you two be wonderful happy parents—I'm so happy for both of you."

And even though Thomas Markle hasn't spoken to Meghan since her wedding day, the father-of-three said in an interview with the Mail on Sunday, he said he was ecstatic over the news.

"I was sitting in line waiting to cross the border when I heard the baby announcement on the car radio," Thomas said. "The first thing I thought about was holding Meghan in my arms as a newborn 37 years ago."

"I thought, 'My baby is having a baby.' It was a very proud moment."

"I was filled with love, joy and happiness for both my beautiful daughter and my son-in-law. A new baby is a blessing and I look forward to seeing a little Meghan or a little Harry."

But while they're over the moon, only time will tell if they'll have any role in the newborn's life.

[H/T: TMZ, PEOPLE]

Do you think Harry and Meghan's child should have American citizenship? Let us know in the comments!

Maya has been working at Shared for a year. She just begrudgingly spent $200 on a gym membership. Contact her at maya@shared.com