De Facto Partner of a Critical Skills Employment Permit Holder, or of a Non-EEA Researcher on a Hosting Agreement

Following the announcement on the 06 March 2019, a new Preclearance scheme for De Facto Partners of Critical Skills Employment Permit Holders (CSEP) and De Facto Partners of Non-EEA Researchers on a Hosting Agreement, launches on the 01 April 2019.

Where Critical Skills Employment Permit (CSEP) Holder is mentioned in the information below, this will also apply to Non-EEA researchers on a Hosting Agreement.

If you intend to travel to Ireland for the purpose of joining your De Facto Partner who holds a Critical Skill Employment Permit (CSEP), you must apply for immigration preclearance to enter the State before you travel to Ireland. This scheme applies to both non-visa required and visa required nationals.

Please note: All applicants must be ordinarily resident outside the State when making an application for permission to come to join their De Facto Partner (CSEP holder) for a period longer than 90 days. Proof of residence outside the State may be requested, and the applicant must remain outside the State while their application is being processed. You will not be permitted entry to the State by an Immigration Officer at the Border for the purpose of joining your De Facto Partner (CSEP Holder), unless you can produce a Preclearance Approval Letter.

Do not apply for this permission if your intended stay in Ireland is for less than 3 months.

About this permission

The initial permitted period of residence under this Scheme is in line with the permission granted to your De Facto Partner as the holder of a Critical Skills Employment permit. Please see the information below for further details. If you are currently in the State as a De Facto Partner of a CSEP Holder please refer to FAQS.

Permission to enter the State as the De Facto Partner of a Critical Skills Employment Permit (CSEP) Holder allows you to seek employment in the State, on a Stamp 1G basis, without the need to obtain a separate work permit. The duration of the permission granted to you will be in line with the duration of permission granted to the CSEP holder, subject to the conditions below.

 

Permission to enter the State as the De Facto Partner of a CSEP Holder allows you to:

  • work on a full or part time basis without the need for an Employment Permit from the Department of Business Enterprise and Employment (DBEI)
  • do additional voluntary work
  • study
  • travel abroad for short periods (e.g. holidays and attending conferences) and return to Ireland
  • bring immediate family members (dependents) with you, meaning in this case minor children under 18 years of age. (or up to 23 years of age if they are in full time education)

 

With this permission you cannot:

  • bring any other family members, apart from those referred to above;
  • Remain in Ireland under this permission if your sponsor leaves the country
  • Retain your permission if your relationship ends
  • Rely on public services or claim any state benefits
  • Operate a business on the basis of being self-employed.

Eligibility and conditions

Who can make an application?

You may apply for permission to enter the State as a De Facto Partner of a CSEP Holder if you:

  • are aged 18 or older
  • are a non EU/EEA and non-Swiss citizen are being sponsored by an eligible person
  • are of good character and good standing, e.g. you can provide a police clearance certificate or equivalent not more than 6 months old for any country you have resided in in the past five years.
  • have resided with your De Facto Partner for at least two years prior to your application.
  • intend to live together permanently with your De Facto Partner in Ireland
  • have medical insurance from a company authorised by the Health Insurance Authority of Ireland to cover you and your dependent children (if applicable) in place on your arrival in the State for the entire duration of your stay in Ireland. (further details below)

 

Who can be a sponsor?

You must be invited to Ireland by an eligible sponsor. An eligible sponsor must:

  • hold a Critical Skills Employment Permit or a Hosting Agreement
  • intend to be resident in the State and be self sufficient i.e. not on social welfare benefits and must, if necessary, be able to support the applicant and any dependents financially without recourse to Public Funds.
  • not have sponsored anyone else in the 7 year period prior to the Preclearance application.
  • be of good character and good standing, e.g. he/she can provide a police clearance certificate or equivalent not more than 6 months old for any country he/she has resided in in the past five years.
  • have medical insurance from a company authorised by the Health Insurance Authority of Ireland (further details below)

Other Requirements

Medical Insurance

You must be covered by private medical insurance, from a company authorised by the Health Insurance Authority for the duration of your time in the State. Your sponsor may include you in their group insurance scheme. Travel insurance may suffice but only during the first year of your stay provided it covers you:

  • For the full period before you arrange private medical insurance
  • At a minimum of €25,000 for accident and €25,000 for illness and disease and
  • For any period of hospitalisation
  • In addition, it is advisable that applicants have insurance to cover repatriation in the event of serious illness or unforeseen events.

 

Fee

A non-refundable fee of €100 applies to this application and must be paid at the time of the Preclearance application. The fee must be paid by Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT). The bank details for EFT are set out on the application form. Other fees will apply if the Preclearance application is granted, including a fee in respect of a visa if applicable to you, and a registration fee, will also apply.

 

Non-EEA Nationals requiring an Entry Visa

If your Preclearance application is successful, you must then apply for a visa online and submit your Preclearance Letter of Approval as a supporting document alongside your passport, signed application summary form and photographs where applicable. (Visa Fees will apply in most cases).

However, persons resident in countries where biometrics are recorded as part of the visa application process must make their visa application at the same time that they make their Preclearance application, and have their biometric details recorded . The countries where biometrics are currently recorded are China, India, Pakistan and Nigeria.

When you have completed the online visa application process, you must follow the instructions on the summary application form that is created by the online system. The summary form will contain information on where you are to submit your passport. If you have already submitted all the required supporting documentation with your Preclearance application, you will not need to submit the documentation again for the visa application. You will just need to submit your signed visa application form with your passport as supporting documents. (Visa Fees and/or consular charges will apply in most cases)

AVATS is the online visa application system. To apply for a visa, use the link below and answer all questions fully and truthfully.

Apply for an Irish visa online via AVATS

 

Non-EEA nationals not requiring an Entry Visa

Non-EEA nationals not requiring an entry visa must have prior approval from the Department of Justice and Equality, Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) under this procedure to enter the State as the De Facto Partner of a CSEP Holder or as the De Facto Partner of a Non EEA Researcher on a Hosting Agreement.

If your application is successful, you will be granted a letter of approval. This letter of approval must be presented to the Immigration Officer at the port of entry on arrival in the State, who will verify its contents by reference to the applications system. You will not be permitted entry to the State for the purpose of the De Facto Partner of a CSEP Holder and/or will not be registered by INIS/GNIB as the De Facto Partner of a CSEP Holder, without prior approval obtained under this procedure before travel to the State.

Documents Required

You must submit the completed application form available at the link below with your Preclearance Application. Your application will not be processed if you do not attach ALL the supporting documentation required. If you or your sponsor submit any false or misleading information or false supporting documentation as part of your application, it will result in the refusal of your application. It may also result in you being prevented from making any further applications for a period of up to 5 years.

The Preclearance Section reserve the right to request the originals of documents at any time and reserve the right to request further information where it is deemed necessary. Full certified translations must accompany any documentation not in the English or Irish language.

 

Joint Documents

Both the applicant and sponsor must submit

  • A copy of current passport (all pages) and full copy of any previous passports
  • Police Clearance Certificates (not more than 6 months old) for the sponsor and the applicant from any country you have resided in in the past five years. These must be issued by the police force of that country and must include a full check of that country’s national and local records. Criminal record checks conducted by private companies will not be accepted
  • Bank Statements (for at least 6 months prior to the application showing incomings and outgoings i.e. living expenses)
  • Evidence of co-habitation of 2 years or more, for example
    • If renting, Letter from Landlord/ agency, rental contract/ book, dated tenancy agreement
    • If home owner, evidence of mortgage, house ownership (for example property deeds)
    • Utility bills from both the applicant and the sponsor
    • Proof of rent paid, or mortgage payments e.g. dated bank statements etc.
  • Evidence of financial inter-dependence (for example, transfer receipts, joint accounts, joint purchases, joint assets, or loans)
  • Evidence of contact (for example letters, messages, emails, phone calls etc.)
  • Detailed relationship history supported by verifiable documentary evidence
  • Evidence of private health insurance for the sponsor, applicant and/or child dependents (where applicable)

 

Applicant Documents

  • Evidence of Fee payment
  • Evidence of Residence outside of Ireland
  • Evidence of legal residence outside country of origin (if applicable)

 

Sponsor Documents

  • A copy of the valid Critical Skills Employment Permit issued by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation or Hosting Agreement
  • Copy of employment contract
  • Evidence of educational qualifications of holder of CSEP or Hosting Agreement
  • Evidence of work experience of holder of CSEP or Hosting Agreement

 

Children’s documents (where applicable)

  • Children’s Birth Certificate (s)
  • Full copy of current passport(s) of children (If they will join you in the State)
  • Full copy of previous passport(s) of children (If they will join you in the State)
  • Evidence that the applicant and/or sponsor is the children’s legal guardian
  • Evidence that the applicant and/or sponsor has the permission of any other guardian to have the children live with them in Ireland.

How to apply

You need to apply for immigration preclearance to join your De Facto Partner (CSEP holder) in Ireland before you travel to Ireland. 

Please complete the Preclearance Application Form and send it together with the required supporting documentation (listed above) to:

Preclearance Section
Visa Division
Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service
13/14 Burgh Quay
Dublin 2
DO2XK70
Ireland

After you apply

After we receive your application and documents, we will check that you have:

  • Answered all questions
  • Attached all requested documentation
  • Paid the application fee

Decision and next steps

In general you can expect a decision within a 8 week period after your application is received. Applications are generally processed in the order they are received.

 

If your application is approved

We will notify you if your application is approved, and will send you a Preclearance letter. Your Preclearance letter is an important document. You will need it to cross border control into Ireland and to finalise your permission to enter the State as the De Facto Partner of a CSEP holder and immigration registration after you arrive here.

The Preclearance letter is valid for 6 months. If you do not use it in time, you must submit a new application from the beginning.

 

If your application is refused

We will notify you by letter if your application is refused outlining the reasons why your application was refused. You can request an appeal of this decision by responding to the refusal reasons with extra supporting documents if required. This appeal must be received by us within six weeks of the date of the refusal letter. The appeal process is free of charge.

 

Appeal of the decision

If your appeal is approved, we will send you a preclearance letter as described above.  If your appeal is refused, we will send you a letter outlining the reasons. You cannot request another appeal. Do not attempt to come to Ireland without preclearance approval (and a visa if relevant) as you will not be allowed to enter the country.

 

Border Control

When you arrive in Ireland, you must show your original preclearance letter (and visa, if applicable) to the Immigration Officer at border control. If you cannot satisfy the Immigration Officer, you will not be allowed to enter the State. Both the letter and the visa must be valid on the date you arrive here. If you are given permission to enter, the officer will place a ‘landing stamp’ in your passport. The landing stamp gives you permission to stay up to the date indicated by the stamp (typically 90 days).

Important: A Preclearance letter and visa (if applicable) allows you to travel to Ireland only. They do not give you permission to enter the country or to stay here. An Immigration Officer at border control can refuse you entry even if you have a preclearance letter and visa.

 

Immigration permission and registration

After you enter the country, you must visit a registration office before your landing stamp expires to:

  1. extend your permission to stay for longer than 90 days (i.e. as the De Facto Partner of a CSEP holder or of a Non EEA Researcher on a Hosting Agreement) and to
  2. register your details with Immigration

If your visit is successful, you will be given immigration permission to stay as the De Facto Partner of a CSEP holder or of a Non EEA Researcher on a Hosting Agreement, in line with your sponsor’s permission, based on immigration stamp number 1G.

Read how to extend your permission and register for the first time.

Renew your immigration permission

You must visit a registration office to renew your permission and registration about 6 weeks before they expire.

 

Contact

Contact details for the Preclearance Unit

Preclearance Unit
Visa Division
Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service
13/14 Burgh Quay
DO2XK70
Dublin 2
Ireland

 

If you have questions, email preclearance@justice.ie

The immigration permission and application system described on this page is based on the Policy Document published 01 April, 2019 which outlines all of the relevant criteria for eligibility for this programme. The Department of Justice and Equality reserves the right to amend or suspend this policy at any time.

 

Contact

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Published: 1 April 2019

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