What you need to know about #Ireland's immigration requirements. #Travel #studyabroad #moveabroad

Disclaimer: Official policy and legislation regarding immigration continually changes. This information is meant to be used as a guide only. Please refer to the Irish Immigration and Naturalisation website for the latest and most up to date information. 

Immigration Process

Outlined is the immigration process for relocating to Ireland, including:

Unless you are an EU/EEA citizen then the Irish immigration process can be time consuming and frustrating. Please be aware that this is only meant to be used as a guide. You can access free immigration legal advice through the voluntary service Free Legal Advice Centres (FLAC). The FLAC website provides details of their telephone and referral services, Legal Advice Centres, and online legal information.

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Refugees

Refugee’s arriving in Ireland can access support and advice through the Irish Refugee Council and Refugee Legal Services through the Legal Aid Board.

Short Stay Visas in Ireland

EU/EEA/Swiss Nationals

Visitors from these countries (including British dependent territories) do not need a visa to visit Ireland and can enter using either their passport or their national identity card.

Irish Short Stay Visa Waiver Programme

Under this programme, citizens of holders of certain categories of Short Stay ‘C’ UK visas can travel to Ireland within the time remaining on their current leave to remain in the UK without the requirement to obtain an Irish visa.

The countries included in the Programme are:

Eastern Europe: Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Russian Federation, Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine

Middle East: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates

Asia: India, Kazakhstan, Peoples Republic of China (excluding Chinese nationals of the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau), Thailand, Uzbekistan.

Visa Exempt Countries

To find out if you need to apply for a visa to visit Ireland, refer to the list of visa exempt countries.

Non-Visa Exempt Countries

All other citizens from countries not on the ‘Irish visa exempt list’ or the ‘Irish Short Stay Visa Waiver Programme list’ will need a full passport as well as a short stay ‘C’ visa to visit Ireland. This short visit visa is valid for a maximum of 90 days and you can apply for either a single entry or a multiple entry short stay ‘C’ visa.

Applying for a Short Stay Visa

To obtain an Irish short stay visa, you need to apply to the Irish embassy or consulate in your country of permanent residence. You may be required to attend an interview. If there is no Irish embassy or consulate in your country of residence then you may apply to any Irish embassy or consulate, or directly to the Visa Office in Dublin.

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      Studying in Ireland

      EU/EEA and Swiss National Students

      EU/EEA and Swiss nationals are free to study in Ireland and there are no special requirements. You do not need to register with the immigration authorities.

      Non EU/EEA and Swiss National Students

      Non EU/EEA and Swiss nationals must gain a place in an Irish educational institution in order to come and study in Ireland. Please be aware that you cannot move to Ireland to do a part-time or distance learning course. However, you can come to Ireland to undertake a short term English language course.

      Students from Visa Exempt Countries

      To find out if you need to apply for a visa to visit Ireland, refer to the list of visa exempt countries.

      Your passport will need to be valid for at least six months after the completion of your course. In addition, all non-EU/EEA students must register with the local Garda National Immigration Bureau.

      Students from Non-Visa Exempt Countries

      Students from countries requiring a visa to enter Ireland must apply for a student visa. When you arrive in Ireland you must also register with the local Garda National Immigration Bureau.

      Applying for a Student Visa

      You must apply for your student visa online using the AVATS online facility. The application will only be processed once the online form is completed and the required documentation, passport photograph, and appropriate fee are received by the relevant office.

      As part of the application process you will need to demonstrate that you have access to €7,000 to support yourself financially during your stay. You will need to have a letter from your course provider (e.g. college or university) confirming that you have been accepted and evidence that the course fees have been paid in full. Your passport will also need to be valid for at least six months after the completion of your course.

      What you need to know about #Ireland's visas and work permit requirements #Travel #studyabroad #moveabroad
      Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
                     

      Student Permission to Work

      Non-EU/EEA students are not entitled to Irish social welfare. However, those with a Stamp 2 are permitted to work up to 20 hours a week during term time. During the holiday periods May to August and from 15th December to 15th January, you can work up to 40 hours per week.

      Students with Stamp 2A permission are not permitted to work.

      Non EU/EEA Students Arriving in Ireland

      All non-EU/EEA citizens, whether visa-required or not, are subject to ordinary immigration controls when they arrive in the country. Although you may have successfully obtained a visa (or be exempt from needing one), you may still be refused entry by Irish immigration officials when you arrive. When arriving in Ireland you should show your acceptance letter from your school, college, or university to the immigration officer so that you receive the correct immigration permission stamp in your passport.

      Please note:

      • The Immigration Officer decides who is allowed to enter Ireland.
      • They will stamp your passport for either one or three months.
      • This means that you must register with the Garda National Immigration Bureau within the time limit stamped on the passport if you plan to stay longer.
      • To ensure that you have no difficulties, it is recommended that you have your documents ready to show the immigration officer when you arrive in Ireland.

        Registering with the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB)

        Non EU/EEA students need to register at the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB). In order to register, you need to visit your local immigration registration office and ask for the registration officer as soon as possible following your arrival in Ireland. Refer to the Garda website to find your closest GNIB.

        You will need to provide the following information:

        • Valid passport (and entry visa if applicable)
          • Valid Student card
            • Evidence of financial support:
            Students from visa exempt countries: If you plan to stay less than six months, then you must demonstrate that you have access to €500 per month to support yourself during your stay. If you plan to stay longer than six months, then the requirement is €3,000.
            Students from countries that are required to have a student visa: You must demonstrate that you have access to €7,000 to support yourself during your stay.

              The registration officer may also take your fingerprints, signature, and photo and may ask for further details.

              On successful completion of your GNIB registration you will be issued with a GNIB Card/Residence Permit. This is valid for one year or for single semester students, to the end of their course. Your GNIB card is valid for one year (unless you are a single semester student). It must be renewed each year by the expiry date.

              Tips
                Moving to Ireland: A Practical Guide

                Irish Work Permits

                EU/EEA/Swiss Nationals

                EU/EEA/Swiss Nationals have the right to stay in Ireland with their family members for up to 3 months. However, if you plan to stay more than 3 months, you must either:

                • Be engaged in economic activity (employed or self employed) or
                • Have sufficient resources and sickness insurance to ensure that you do not become a burden on the social services of Ireland or
                • Be enrolled as a student or vocational trainee or
                • Be a family member of a Union citizen in one of the previous categories.

                You do not need an Irish employment permit or residence card to live here and are entitled to be treated the same as Irish workers.

                Learn more about the residence rights of EU/EEA nationals in Ireland.

                UK Citizens

                Are entitled to live and work in Ireland without any conditions or restrictions and are entitled to be treated the same as Irish workers.

                Other Countries

                If you are from outside the EU/EEA or Switzerland then you need a permit in order to live and work in Ireland. These can be very difficult to obtain depending on your circumstances. When you apply for a work permit, you will be required to pay a fee.

                General Employment Permit (formerly work permit)

                These permits are available for occupations with an annual salary of €30,000 or more. Only in exceptional cases will jobs earning less than this be considered. Normally, a labour market needs test is required. After 12 months of working in Ireland, General Employment Permit holders can apply for their family members to join them. 

                Critical Skills Employment Permit (formerly Green Card permit)

                This permit is available for most occupations with an annual salary of over €60,000. They are also available for occupations on the Highly Skilled Occupations List that pay an annual salary of at least €30,000. There is no requirement for a labour market needs test, but, you must secure a 2 year job offer. However, the good news is, if you decide to change jobs, you can after a minimum of 12 months, but you will need to submit a new application for an employment permit and you need to switch to a similar job or a job in another area that is on the Eligible Occupations List. Critical Skills Employment Permit holders can apply for immediate family re-unification.

                Dependant/Partner/Spouse Employment Permit

                This permit applies to spouses, recognised partners, civil partners and dependants of holders of Critical Skills Employment Permits or researchers under a hosting agreement. There is no requirement for a labour market needs test.

                Reactivation Employment Permit

                Allows foreign nationals who entered the State on a valid employment permit but who fell out of the system through no fault of their own, or have been badly treated or exploited in the workplace, to work again. Applicants for a Reactivation Employment Permit must first apply to the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) for a temporary immigration permission Stamp 1. You can find the eligibility criteria, guidelines and application form on the inis.gov.ie website.

                Contract for Services Employment Permit

                Foreigners undertaking work with a contract to provide services to an Irish entity. These permits allow the transfer of non-EEA employees to work on an Irish contract in Ireland while remaining on an employment contract outside the State. Generally, a labour market needs test is required.

                Intra-Company Transfer Employment Permit

                Allows senior management, key personnel and trainees working in an overseas branch of a multinational company to transfer to the Irish branch. They must be earning at least €40,000 a year (trainees must be earning at least €30,000 a year) and have been working for the company for a minimum of 12 months.

                Internship Employment Permit

                Available to non-EEA national full-time students who are enrolled in a third-level institution outside Ireland and have a work experience job offer in the State.

                Sport and Cultural Employment Permit

                For employment in the State for the development, operation and capacity of sporting and cultural activities.

                Exchange Agreement Employment Permit

                For those employed in the State under prescribed agreements, e.g. the Fulbright Program for researchers and academics.

                Working Holiday Maker Program in Ireland

                Citizens of Argentina, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, USA, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea and Taiwan may apply for a Working Holiday visa as part of a reciprocal agreement between these countries and Ireland. You also need to have sufficient funds to support yourself while looking for work. As a non-EU national, you must register with the Garda National Immigration Bureau. There is a fee of €300 for the issue of a Garda registration card.

                US Work & Travel Program in Ireland

                US citizens can enter Ireland on a Work and Travel visa, but they must either be in post-secondary education or have graduated within the last 12 months. In addition, they will need to:

                • Present an original bank statement showing that they have access to €1500 and a return ticket or access to €3000
                • Medical/travel insurance
                • Paid the relevant fee.

                  Students Working in Ireland

                  Non-EU/EEA students are not entitled to Irish social welfare, but those with a Stamp 2 are allowed to work up to 20 hours a week during term time. During the holiday periods May to August and from 15 December to 15 January, you can work up to 40 hours a week.

                  Students with stamp 2A permission are not allowed to work.

                  Arriving in Ireland with a Work Permit

                  All non-EU/EEA citizens, whether visa-required or not, are subject to ordinary immigration controls when they arrive in the country. Although you may have successfully obtained a work permit, you can still be refused entry by the Irish immigration officials when you arrive. Make sure that you have all of your documents ready and easily accessible as you go through immigration. As well as your work permit, you should also have all of the documents that you submitted as part of your permit application.

                  Please note:

                  • The Immigration Officer makes the decision on who is actually allowed to enter Ireland.
                  • They will stamp your passport for either one or three months. This means that you must register with the Garda National Immigration Bureau within the time limit stamped on the passport if you plan to stay longer.
                  What you need to know about #Irelands immigration requirements. #Travel #studyabroad #moveabroad
                  The Garda National Immigration Bureau operate the airport Passport Control on arrival into Ireland

                  Registering with the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB)

                  In order to register, you need to visit your local immigration registration office and ask for the registration officer as soon as possible following your arrival in Ireland. Refer to the Garda website to find your closest GNIB.

                  You will need to provide the following information:

                  • Your passport
                  • Your nationality, how and when you acquired it and your previous nationality (if any)
                  • Date and place of your birth e.g. your birth certificate
                  • Your profession or occupation
                  • Documentation supporting your residence permission, e.g. your work permit.
                  • Your Irish employment contract
                  • Your Irish address
                  • The address where you last lived outside the State
                  • A credit/debit card for payment of €300 fee.

                    The registration officer may also take your fingerprints, signature, and photo and may ask for further details.

                    On successful completion of your GNIB registration you will be issued with a GNIB Card/residence permit.

                    Retiring to Ireland

                    Irish Citizens

                    Irish citizens returning to Ireland have an automatic right to reside here.

                    UK Citizens

                    May live in Ireland without any conditions or restrictions.

                    EEA and Swiss Nationals

                    Can remain in Ireland with your family for up to 3 months without restriction. But if you are retired and plan to stay more than 3 months, you need sufficient resources and sickness insurance to ensure that you do not become a burden on the State.

                    Other Countries

                    If you are not from a visa exempt country then you will need to obtain a visa to get into Ireland. Once you arrive in Ireland, you must obtain permission to remain by registering with your local Garda National Immigration Bureau and prove that you have sufficient resources and health insurance to support yourself to ensure that you do not become a burden on the State.

                    Since March 2015, the Ireland Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) changed the standards by which non-EU retirees are determined to be financially suitable for residency. The new rule requires that retirees have an annual income of no less than €50,000 per person, (€100,000 for a married couple) for the remainder of their lives in Ireland, regardless of their existing cash on hand or lack of debt.

                    Retirees have also had their immigration status changed from Stamp 3 to Stamp 0, which, according to the INIS website is “a low level immigration status which is not intended to be reckonable for Long Term Residence or Citizenship. It is granted to persons who have been approved by INIS for a limited and specific stay in Ireland.”

                    Arriving in Ireland to Retire

                    All non-EU/EEA citizens, whether visa-required or not, are subject to ordinary immigration controls when they arrive in the country. Although you may have successfully obtained a visa (or not even need one), you can still be refused entry by Irish immigration officials when you arrive.

                    Please note:

                    • The Immigration Officer makes the decision on who is actually allowed to enter Ireland.
                    • They will stamp your passport for either one or three months. This means you must register with the Garda National Immigration Bureau within the time limit stamped on the passport if you plan to stay longer than three months.

                    To ensure you have no difficulties, it’s recommended that you have your documents ready to show to the officer.

                    Registering with the Garda National Immigration Bureau

                    In order to register, you need to visit your local immigration registration office and ask for the registration officer as soon as possible following your arrival in Ireland. Refer to the Garda website to find your closest GNIB.

                    You will need to provide the following information:

                    • Your passport
                    • Your nationality, how and when you acquired it and your previous nationality (if any)
                    • Date and place of your birth e.g. your birth certificate
                    • Documentation supporting your residence permission, e.g. visa if required.
                    • Proof that you have sufficient resources and health insurance to support yourself to ensure that you do not become a burden on the State.
                    • Your Irish address
                    • The address where you last lived outside the State
                    • A credit/debit card for payment of €300 fee.

                      The registration officer may also take your fingerprints, signature, and photo and may ask for further details.

                      On successful completion of your GNIB registration you will be issued with a GNIB Card/residence permit.

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