27 January 2016
Application for a Change of Immigration Status. General Guidelines
The purpose of this note is to provide clarification for applicants and legal practitioners as to the procedures involved in applying for a change of immigration permission (change of status).
All non-EEA nationals need permission to remain in the State. Permission to remain will be in the form of an endorsement in your passport confirming the conditions and period of time for which you have permission to remain in the State.
It is only possible to apply for a renewal or variation in immigration permission when you are currently in permission. Applications for change of status made on the basis of Section 4(7) of the Immigration Act 2004 can only be considered when the applicant has a valid current permission to be in the State. Applications made on this basis by or on behalf of persons who are not lawfully resident will not be considered.
An application for a change of immigration status can include changing from one category or stamp to another (with various conditions attaching to different categories of migration) or a variation of the duration of the permission.
If you have an existing immigration permission which you wish to change, the key issue to be determined is whether you meet the criteria for the new status sought. You should consult the information on this site relating to the different categories of permission. For instance a person who has held a critical skills employment permit for two years has a route to a Stamp 4 permission. A person may also be entitled to an upgraded immigration status on the basis of marriage to an Irish national.
If you currently have immigration permission to be in the State (Stamp 1, 2 or 3) and a valid in date GNIB card you may apply to change that immigration permission.
If you do not have current immigration permission you may not apply for a change of status in this way.
Note: Any person seeking to change their immigration status should do so well before their current immigration permission expires. The fact that an application for change of status has been made and is under consideration does not affect or extend the applicants current permission.
Further information is available at the following links