Irish Ancestry Visa: Irish Citizenship by Birth or Descent

If you’re looking from Irish Citizenship from the US, you’ve come to the right place. Obtaining Irish citizenship through birth or descent can be a tricky area to delve into. So to give you a helping hand, we’ve broken done what you need to know to explain the requirements as clearly as possible, as well as the relevant information in regards to your situation.

Born Outside of Ireland?

  1. Parents Born in Ireland

If either of your parents happened to be an Irish citizen who was born there, then you are automatically an Irish citizen even if you were born in the states. If you are as a result an Irish citizen, you can then apply for an Irish passport. Please note, you don’t need an Irish passport in order to officially be an Irish citizen, it is more just a form of evidence that you are a citizen.

  1. Parents Born Outside of Ireland

In the scenario where you were born outside of Ireland to an Irish citizen who was themselves born outside of Ireland, then you are entitled to become an Irish citizen. If for example you parent obtained citizenship through marriage, adoption or naturalisation, you can also become an Irish citizen.

If in the case your parent who derived from citizenship was decreased when you were born but would have been an Irish citizen if they were alive at that specific time – you would be classed an Irish citizen. Also, you derive citizenship through an Irish parent whether or not your parents were married to each other at the time of your birth.

  1. Descent from Irish Grandparents

If you’re someone who has grandparents that were born in Ireland, yet neither your mother or father were born in Ireland, you are eligible to become an Irish Citizen. For this to happen, you’ll need to have your birth registered in the Foreign Births Register – if you’re claiming Irish citizenship you’ll need to be registered on this and your citizenship will start from the registration date, not from your birth date.

  1. Ancestors

If neither your parent or Irish-born grandparent were a citizen at the time of your birth, you can’t claim Irish citizenship on the basis of previous ancestry. Claims based upon cousins, aunts or uncle’s do not apply.

The following table from the Irish Citizen Information website may help to further breakdown your situation and eligibility:

If you are: Then you are:
A

Born in the island of Ireland on or before 31 December 2004.

Entitled to Irish citizenship or you are an Irish citizen
B

Born on the island of Ireland on or after 1 January 2005.

Entitled to Irish citizenship if one or both of your parents:

  • Is Irish
  • Is British or entitled to live in Northern Ireland or the Irish State without restriction on their residency
  • Is a foreign national legally resident in the island of Ireland for 3 out of 4 years immediately prior to your birth
  • Has been granted refugee status in Ireland
C

Child of A, born outside the island of Ireland.

An Irish citizen

D

Child of C and a grandchild of A, born outside the island of Ireland.

Entitled to Irish citizenship, but you must first register in the Foreign Births Register

E A child of D and a great-grandchild of A, born outside the island of Ireland.

 

Entitled to Irish citizenship, by having your birth registered in the Foreign Births Register, but only if your parent D had registered by the time of your birth.

  1. Through Adoption

If the child who isn’t an Irish citizen is adopted by an Irish citizen or partners where one of the parties is Irish, their adopted child may be an Irish citizen. Where an Irish citizen living in the states adopts a child there, they will need to apply for the adoption to go through the register of intercountry adoptions – this will give it the same legal status as it would if it was done in the same State.

Wondering How to Apply for Irish Citizenship?

If you qualify for Irish citizenship but you’re unsure about how you go about how you can apply, why not get in touch with one of our specialists? We can provide you with the exact information you’ll need in order to secure your Irish citizenship. We can guide you through the process and tell you how you can go about securing your Irish passport.

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