The Sussexes have the all-clear to move to North America – and experts believe they should choose Canada over the United States.
Prince Harry's grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, head of the Commonwealth and effectively CEO of the family business, gave him and his wife Meghan Markle their public blessings for their likely partial move to Canada.
Experts agree that the couple will have ample opportunity to benefit from their celebrity status once they are independent of the royal family and have a North American base.
The queen confirmed that she would have preferred the couple to remain in the family business as “working members of the royal family”. She confirmed that they would no longer be dependent on public funds after a transition period.
The statement followed a "Sandringham Summit" by senior members of the royal family and advisors on the Queen's estate. Meghan Markle was not there in person, but was reportedly planning to attend the summit by phone from Vancouver. Prince Philip left the house before the meeting and Prince William is said to have had only 15 minutes left.
Experts generally agree that once the couple is independent of the royal family and has a base in North America, the couple will have ample opportunity to benefit from their celebrity status.
You have already introduced the "Sussex Royal" label as a trademark, which is causing speculation that a range of branded kitchen towels, kitchenware and other consumer goods could soon appear in Nordstrom
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Life in Canada offers significant tax benefits
The couple appears to be moving to Canada rather than the United States. Observers note several key financial benefits, including the fact that moving to Canada keeps Prince Harry out of the complex web of US international tax law.
The United States, almost unique among countries, tax citizens and others worldwide, even if they move abroad and never return. If Harry were resident in the U.S., he would be subject to U.S. tax law, which could result in a situation where the Internal Revenue Service sent notifications to Buckingham Palace requesting that the British royalty file accounts and U.S. Tax pays.
Meghan and Harry may have a lot of taxable income as they hope to follow in the footsteps of Oprah Winfrey, Martha Stewart and the Kardashians. Martha Stewart sold her branded goods company for $ 350 million in 2015, although she was reportedly once worth over $ 1 billion. More recently, Kylie Jenner has launched a cosmetics store that has reportedly made her a billionaire.
Canada makes more sense in terms of security
Canada is a member of the British Commonwealth and the Queen is the head of state, so the couple may be able to ask the Canadian state for security help. When the Sussexes spent six weeks on vacation in Canada, Scotland Yard offered protection with the help of the Canadian police.
However, it will be easier for them to ensure security in Canada at the expense of the state than in the United States. “The Governor General who represents the Queen in Canada is protected by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and as Prince of the Canadian Empire. Harry and his family are protected by the same team of guards that needs to be expanded, ”said the London Evening Standard.
"Royal protection by armed police officers in the metropolitan area is ordered by the Home Office," he added. "So far, their official roles mean that the Duke and Duchess and their son are classified as internationally protected persons."
A problem for the pair is that Brexit has made the British pound very weak on the international stock exchanges. As a result, Harry's royal fortune, inherited from his mother, late Princess Diana and great-grandmother, will go much less on this side of the pond than a few years ago. The pound is about 20% below the highs before the 2016 Brexit referendum.
"It is a smarter move than moving to the US," said lawyer David Lesperance, who helps wealthy individuals and families from all countries cope with cross-border immigration and tax problems.
Lesperance, founder and managing partner of Lesperance & Associates, is a Canadian citizen and lives in Gdansk, Poland. A number of its customers, including wealthy Brazilians, Mexicans, and Europeans, consider Canada to be a smart tax destination. You are close enough to America to travel without participating in the country's tax laws.
According to Lesperance, Canada does not levy capital gains tax on homes that increase in value as long as the place is a person's or family's primary residence. If Meghan and Harry bought a palace that was gaining value, perhaps because it was them or because they had done some renovation work, the couple could take the entire profit minus the brokerage fees.
In the United States, the Internal Revenue Service only allows a couple to exclude the first $ 500,000 in capital gains from the sale of a main house. However, homeowners can deduct mortgage interest on their taxes every year, but Canadians don't have such depreciation, Lesperance added.
Divorce law is less complicated in Canada than in the United Kingdom or the United States.
But what happens to all the assets earned in the event of a split? 2020 is highly unlikely, but what will it be like in years or decades? The Canadian Divorce Act generally divides all new goods in the same way. This is good news if the couple manages to benefit from their celebrity status, even if their adventure ends up in tears.
Meanwhile, Canadian family law experts confirm that, under Canadian law, if the couple separated, Harry would be entitled to half of the new assets they had built up during their marriage. "Essentially … any form of property built up during the relationship would be split 50%," said Sophie Bartholomew, a family lawyer with Maclean Law, a Vancouver-based law firm.
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This applies to both assets acquired during marriage and increases in value that occurred during marriage, says Denise Whitehead, a professor of family and law at the University of Waterloo in Canada. (There are wrinkles that explain the "excluded" fortune, usually the money each party has brought into a marriage, and to reflect things like debt, she adds.)
In the event of a divorce, neither Harry nor Meghan could claim the property that the other party brought into the marriage, experts say. But all the money, for example, from the Sussex Royal Collection at J.C. Penney
"? You would share this 50/50. (In the United States, divorce law depends on which state applies for divorce.)
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And in the UK? "The marriage and property division law is lengthy and complicated," said Bennett Oakley Solicitors. "Unfortunately, the law is not clear on what constitutes marriage property."
"If the marriage has lasted for many years, any property that was acquired before the marriage is likely to be considered part of the spouse," the company added. "However, if the marriage was short, less than five years, then one party to the marriage is less likely to be entitled to the other party's extramarital property."
(Andrew Keshner contributed to this story.)