USA and the UK
- Who is eligible for permanent residence in Ireland?
- How can Irish work permit holders apply for permanent residency?
- What is the application process for permanent residence in Ireland?
- Who is ineligible to become an Irish permanent resident?
- Can family members of Irish permanent residents apply for residency?
- What documents do spouses or civil partners of Irish citizens need to submit?
- How can IAS help?
- Frequently Asked Questions
Who is eligible for permanent residence in Ireland?
To be able to apply for Irish permanent residence status, you have to have been living in the country for a certain period of time. The period of time which counts towards permanent resident status and naturalization is called reckonable residence. To obtain enough time to apply for Irish residency, you usually will have had to have spent at least 5 years In Ireland with some type of work authorization.
Sometimes, however, this period can be shorter. For example, if you are in Ireland on the Critical Skills Employment Permit, you might be eligible to submit your application after just 2 years.
Keep in mind that during the period of reckonable residence, you have to have been living in Ireland continuously. Any time spent outside of Ireland during this period will not count towards reckonable residence.
If your application for Irish permanent residence is successful, you will receive Stamp 4 in your passport. This stamp is valid for 5 years and is renewable. After living in Ireland for a few years with Stamp 4, you will eventually be able to apply for Irish citizenship where you can obtain an Irish passport.
How can Irish work permit holders apply for permanent residency?
Foreign citizens who come to Ireland on an Irish work permit and spend a few years working there can usually apply for residency in Ireland after 5 years if they are on a Stamp 1 or Stamp 4. That is the case, for example, with the General Employment Permit.
If you are in Ireland on the Critical Skills Employment Permit, however, you can submit your application sooner, after spending just 2 years working and living in Ireland.
You have to be aware of the fact that not all types of work you might have done in Ireland count towards reckonable residence. For example, if you previously came to Ireland on a Working Holiday Visa, or you did an internship there, the time spent in Ireland under these visits does not qualify for permanent residence.
Moreover, to be able to apply for permanent resident status, you must be in employment at the time of applying, during the application process, and after it finishes. In addition, you must also be a person of ‘good character’ with a valid Irish residence permit at the time of application.
What is the application process for permanent residence in Ireland?
If you are applying for permanent residency as a work permit holder, you have to submit a copy of your work permit in Ireland, a copy of your Certificate of Registration, and a copy of your passport to the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS).
Immigration officials will then review these documents and will determine whether you meet the requirements for permanent resident status. If your application is successful, you will receive a letter of approval and you will have to pay the long-term residency fee of €500. You will have 28 days to settle the payment either by bank draft or postal order. All fees are payable to the Secretary-General, Department of Justice and Equality.
After you pay the fee, you will receive a letter from INIS confirming that you have been granted Long Term Ireland Residency on Stamp 4. To receive a stamp on your passport, you have to go to the Garda National Immigration Bureau.
Who is ineligible to become an Irish permanent resident?
If you are applying for long-term residency in Ireland, your application may be rejected if:
- You are a student in Ireland on Stamp 2 or Stamp 2A
- You are a citizen of a European Economic Area (EEA) country
- You are no longer working in Ireland
- You are a current resident under business permission
- You are working at a foreign embassy
- You have permission to remain on Stamp 4 after qualifying under the 2004 Student Probationary Extension
Can family members of Irish permanent residents apply for residency?
If you are married to, or in a civil partnership with an Irish citizen, you might be able to come to Ireland and live there permanently on the basis of your relationship.
If you do not need a visa to come to Ireland, you and your Irish spouse or civil partner have to go to a local immigration office so that you can receive permission to remain as the spouse or civil partner of an Irish National. If, however, you are from a non-EEA country and you need a visa to travel to Ireland, you have to obtain the Long Stay ‘D’ Join Family Visa before you travel to Ireland.
Irish citizens do not have an automatic right to bring their foreign spouses or civil partners to Ireland. To be eligible to receive the Join Family Visa and long-term residency status, you will have to provide extensive evidence proving that your relationship is genuine. You also have to demonstrate that you and your partner have enough money to support yourselves as a couple after you join them in Ireland.
Successful applicants will receive Stamp 4 in their passports, which means they will be able to live in Ireland long-term and work there without having to apply for an employment permit. After 5 years of continuous residence in Ireland, family members such as spouses and civil partners will be able to apply for a permanent residence permit.
What documents do spouses or civil partners of Irish citizens need to submit?
If you are the spouse or civil partner of an Irish citizen, you will have to submit the following documents:
- Application form signed and dated by you and your Irish citizen partner
- Original marriage or civil partnership certificate
- Your and your partner’s passports and birth certificates
- Bank statements for the previous 6 months for you and your Irish partner
- Proof confirming that your Irish partner has earned at least €40,000 in the previous 3 years
- Evidence showing that you and your partner have previously lived together
- Details of your partner’s address in Ireland.
All original documents will be returned to you after an immigration official reviews them. It is advisable that you hire an immigration lawyer to help you prepare your portfolio of evidence because the failure to submit some of the documents can lead to your application being delayed or rejected.
How can IAS help?
Applying for long-term residence in Ireland can be complex as not all your visits to Ireland count towards reckonable residence. Our lawyers can help you determine whether you meet the eligibility criteria and can guide you through each step of the process.
At IAS, our lawyers have expert knowledge of Irish immigration law and they have helped many people immigrate to Ireland permanently. Regardless of whether you are applying as an employment permit holder working in Ireland, or as a person wanting to join their Irish citizen spouse, our lawyers can help.
Thanks to the professional advice of an immigration lawyer, you can be sure that your application has been completed to the highest standard and that you submitted all the required supporting documents.
Call us today on +1 844 290 6312 to find out more about how our highly-qualified lawyers can help.
Last modified on September 8th, 2023 at 8:57 am
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On average, applications for Irish Permanent Residency are processed within 6 to 8 months. Nevertheless, applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis so the processing can take longer if your case is complex. Similarly, if you forget to include some of the required documents, you can expect to wait longer to hear the decision.
Make sure to apply only if you meet the reckonable residence requirement. Otherwise, if you have not lived in Ireland for at least 5 years, your application will be rejected right away.
Our lawyers can help you determine whether your current or any previous visas to Ireland make you eligible for permanent residency.
If you have lived in Ireland with work authorization for at least 5 years (2 years if you have the Critical Skills Employment Permit), you are eligible to apply for permanent resident status. Getting it should not be difficult provided that you are able to submit evidence confirming that you meet the eligibility requirements.
Our lawyers can help you calculate your reckonable residence to make sure you qualify for permanent long-term residence in Ireland. They can also help you prepare all the necessary documents to make the application as straightforward and stress-free as possible.
Yes, holders of Stamp 4 in Ireland have the right to work in Ireland without having to obtain work permits. If you receive Stamp 4, you can also establish and run your own business in Ireland and you are allowed to access state services.
Stamp 4 is initially valid for 5 years but after this period you can renew it. Moreover, after living in Ireland for 5 years with Stamp 4, you might be able to apply for citizenship by naturalization and later an Irish passport.
Ireland belongs to the European Union but it is not part of the Schengen Area. That is why, as an Irish permanent resident, you cannot travel freely to other EU countries. If you want to visit them, you have to obtain a Schengen Visa, which covers 26 countries.
Nevertheless, there are no border checks at internal borders in the Schengen area. That means that once you have the Schengen Visa and you go through passport control in one Schengen country, you will be able to travel freely within the area and visit other EU countries.