Joining your UK national family member in Ireland

With effect from 11pm on 31 December 2020 following the end of the Brexit transition period, all non-EEA family members of UK nationals seeking to join, or accompany, their UK national family member in Ireland will need to apply (depending on nationality) through a preclearance or visa scheme. This scheme applies to both visa required and non-visa required nationals. You must apply before you travel to Ireland. Do not apply under this scheme if your intended stay is for less than 3 months.

The Preclearance Scheme only applies when a UK national has come to live in Ireland after 31 December 2020. If a UK national is living in Ireland on or before that date they and their eligible non-EEA family members will be a beneficiary under the Withdrawal Agreement. 

UK citizens are not considered ‘non-nationals’ for the purpose of Irish immigration law, and will continue to enjoy arrangements under the Common Travel Area (CTA) including the freedom to live in the State after the UK leaves the European Union (EU). 

This scheme allows certain non-EEA nationals to apply to join their UK national family member in Ireland. There is no automatic entitlement to family reunification but UK nationals will be permitted to act as a sponsor of such applications.

The immigration permission and application system described on this page is based on the Policy Document published 23/12/2020. The Department of Justice reserves the right to amend or suspend this policy at any time. The information below is intended as a guide only, the policy document outlines all of the relevant criteria for eligibility for this programme.

I am outside of Ireland, am I eligible to apply under this Scheme?

  • Are a non-EEA, non-Swiss national,
  • Are being sponsored by a UK national,
  • Are ordinarily resident outside of Ireland,
  • 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
  • Are in a position to show documentary evidence of your relationship to the UK national,
  • Intend to live together permanently with your UK family member in Ireland,
  • Have medical insurance from a company authorised by the Health Insurance Authority of Ireland (see below for further details).
  • And fall into one of the following categories:

Category 1:

  • Spouse,
  • civil partner or
  • de facto partner (you must be aged 18 years or older if applying in this category).

Category 2: Dependent child of:

  • sponsor
  • spouse;
  • civil partner; or
  • de facto partner.

Category 3: Dependent parents (who are aged 66 or older) of:

  • sponsor;
  • spouse;
  • civil partner;
  • or of de facto partner.

Eligibility to apply does not mean that it is automatically assumed that the non EEA national’s application will be granted under this Scheme.

Who can sponsor me?

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

  • Be a UK national
  • Intend to be resident in the State or already be in the State and be self-sufficient, i.e. not on social welfare benefits and must be able to support the applicant(s) financially without recourse to Public Funds
  • In the case of a spouse/civil partner/de facto partner, not have sponsored anyone else in the 7 year period prior to the preclearance/visa application
  • Not have been completely or mainly reliant on benefits for a period of two years or longer immediately prior to the application. Furthermore, the sponsor must have earned a gross income in each of the 3 previous years in excess of that applied by the Department of Social Protection (DSP) in assessing eligibility for Working Family Payment (WFP).  The WFP does not apply in the case of a married couple, civil partner / de facto partnership where there are no children and consequently a minimum level of assessable income for couples without children is €20,000 per annum, over and above any entitlement to State benefits. This figure will rise for UK nationals seeking to be joined by multiple family members and where dependent parents are involved.

 

Further consideration will be given to the following in assessing eligibility to sponsor:

  • The conduct of the sponsor
  • Whether the sponsor has come to the adverse attention of An Garda Síochána or the immigration authorities,
  • Capacity of the sponsor to support the family member financially for the duration of their proposed stay in the State, and the
  • Closeness and genuineness of the relationship between the sponsor and non-EEA national.

Eligibility to act as a sponsor does not mean that it is automatically assumed that the non EEA national’s application will be granted under this Scheme.

How do I apply?

You can check if you are visa required or non-visa required (preclearance required), using our nationality checker.

Do I need a visa?

To apply under this Scheme, you must, before you travel to Ireland, apply for a Visa or preclearance.

You should take into consideration the current processing times for preclearance/ visa applications when making an application.

You must apply from your home country or a country where you are a legal resident. Proof of residence outside the State may be requested, and the applicant must remain outside the State while their application is being processed.

IMPORTANT: You will not be permitted entry to the State for the purpose of joining or accompanying your UK family member by an Immigration Officer at the Border, nor will you be registered in the State unless you can produce the appropriate Preclearance Approval Letter or a long stay ‘D’ Join Family UK National Visa.

A Preclearance Approval Letter and visa allows you to travel to Ireland only for a specific purpose. 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 /long stay visa.

  • Non-Visa Required nationals will apply for a preclearance letter of approval.
  • Visa-Required nationals will apply for a long stay ‘D’ visa.

Your application has 3 parts:

  1. APPLICATION FORM:

Fill in the online application form. This will generate an application summary form and declaration at the end which must be printed, signed and dated.

When you are filling in your information on the online application form

If you are a visa required national,

  • You will need to select Visa type as ‘Long Stay (D)’
  • Journey Type as ‘Single’ entry or ‘Multiple’ entry
  • And select ‘Visa –Join Family (UK National) as your reason for travel at the link above.

If you are a non-visa required national

  • You will need to select Preclearance type as ‘Long Stay (D)’
  • Journey Type as ‘Single’
  • And select ‘Preclearance – Join Family (UK National)’ as your reason for travel at the link above.

Do not provide false or misleading information on the application form. Doing so can result in you being prevented from making further visa/preclearance applications for a period of up to 5 years.

 

  1. ORGANISE YOUR DOCUMENTS AND PAY FEE

You must organise your supporting documents and pay the visa/preclearance application fee. Different offices accept fees in different ways. The summary application form will tell you to which office you need to pay your fee.

 

  1. SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION

To complete the process, you must submit your passport & supporting documents for processing. Where you submit your application depends on where you are living. The summary application form will direct you to the relevant office.

It is very important that you submit your documents and fee to the correct office within 30 days of completing the online application form.

Each non EEA person (regardless of age) will have to make a separate application following the steps above for preclearance or a visa depending on their nationality.

If you are asked to submit your documents by post to an office (recorded delivery only), put them into a strong padded envelope and make sure to pay the correct postage. You may send all your applications together if you are applying for more than one person. To send together:

  • Place each person's application documents into separate envelopes
  • Write the name and Application Transaction Number of each applicant on each envelope
  • Place each envelope into a larger envelope send it to the application office.

Do not use any clips, staples or files to attach sheets together in your application.

Applications for children under the age of 18 should be made by their parent / legal guardian.

What supporting documents are required?

If you find that you cannot submit a document requested below, you should provide an explanation as to why you cannot provide it, and any other documents for consideration by the Preclearance / Visa Officer. The documents below are important because they provide information about your personal circumstances in the country from which you are applying.

The onus is on you to satisfy the Visa Officer that a visa should be granted for the purpose sought.

The submission of any or all of these documents does not guarantee that your application will be successful.

Original documents must be provided.

If you submit a document that is not in English/Irish, it must be accompanied by a full translation. Each translated document must contain:

  • confirmation from the translator that it is an accurate translation of the original document;
  • the date of the translation;
  • the translator’s full name and signature; and
  • the translator’s contact details.

All letters submitted by a business, company or other organisation should be on official headed paper and give full contact details so that they can be verified. These must include a full postal address, name of contact, position in the organisation, telephone number (landline), website, and email address (email addresses such as Yahoo or Hotmail are not accepted).

The Visa Officer considers each application on its merits and may request additional information or documentation.

Documentation required from all applicants

  1. Application Summary Form

Fill in the online application form. This will generate an application summary form and declaration at the end which must be printed, signed and dated. The online application form is signed by the parent or legal guardian of the child when under the age of 18 years.

When they are filling in their information on the online application form:

If they are a visa required national,

  • They will need to select Visa type as ‘Long Stay (D)’
  • Journey Type as ‘Single’  entry or ‘Multiple’ entry
  • And select ‘Join Family (UK National)’ as their reason for travel on the link above.

If you are a non-visa required national

  • You will need to select Preclearance type as ‘Long Stay (D)’
  • Journey Type as ‘Single’
  • And select ‘Preclearance – Join Family (UK National)’ as their reason for travel at the link above. 

Do not provide false or misleading information on the application form. Doing so can result in you being prevented from making further visa/preclearance applications for a period of up to 5 years.

 

  1. 2 x passport sized photographs - [Rules for Photographs.]  

 

  1. Passports

​You are required to submit your current passport with a Visa / Preclearance application.

It must be valid for at least 12 months from your proposed date of entry.

If you have held previous passports, you must also submit a good quality colour copy of all pages of these passports. (All pages includes blank pages.)

If you are unable to provide copies of your previous passports, a written explanation must be provided along with any relevant police reports for consideration.

If you have changed your name in the past, for example by marriage or for any other reason, you must provide full details to us.

 

  1. Evidence of fee payment

Please read the information on fees below. Some applicants do not have to pay the visa fee.

A non-refundable fee of €60 applies to preclearance/visa applications and must be paid in full at the time of the preclearance application. If you are visa required and selecting a ‘Multiple’ entry visa the fee will be €100

Please include, with your application, proof that the application fee has been paid – for example a copy of the transfer receipt from your bank.

The visa / preclearance fee is a non-refundable administration fee which covers the cost of processing your application. This fee cannot be refunded even if your application is refused or withdrawn.

You may be required to pay additional charges e.g. relating to the submission of your documents. The website of the office to which you must submit your documents will have details about additional charges and any local payment options. Details of the relevant office will be available to you once you complete the online application.

 

Information on fee exemptions

Some visa applicants are exempt from the requirement to pay the fee. Check below if the fee does not apply to you.

Nationalities exempt from visa / preclearance fees:

  • Bosnia
  • Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
  • Ecuador
  • Indonesia
  • Jamaica
  • Kosovo
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Montenegro
  • Morocco
  • North Macedonia
  • Peru
  • Serbia
  • Sri Lanka
  • Tunisia
  • Uganda
  • Zambia

 

  1. Medical insurance

You must provide evidence of medical insurance for a period of 1 year from your proposed date of entry into Ireland with your preclearance or visa application that satisfies the criteria outlined below:

You must be covered by private medical insurance, from a company authorised by the Health Insurance Authority . The sponsor may include you in their group insurance scheme so long as this insurance plan covers you from the date of entry into the State at a level which provides for private healthcare for any period of hospitalisation in a private hospital.

 

  1. Up to date 6 months bank statements

Bank statements must be on headed bank paper. You may use a printed internet statement but it must be officially certified by your bank. This means that every page must be notarised by the bank and the statement must be accompanied by a letter from the bank. We will not accept uncertified internet statements.

They must show:

  • The full name of the owner of the account
  • Address
  • The bank account number and account type
  • Money paid in and out of the account over the last six (6) months immediately prior to the application. (i.e. income and expenditure) and
  • If you are also sending a bank statement from a deposit/savings account, you must
    • Include a letter from your bank confirming that you can take money from that account.

Please note that handwritten entries or details on a bank statement are not accepted.

 

  1. A Letter of Application

Your letter of application must include the following:

  • Your full name, postal address and application number.
  • If applicable, include details of all accompanying family members including their application transaction numbers
  • Your reason for travelling to Ireland, and how long you plan to stay.
  • The date you started living at your current address, and any previous addresses you have resided at in the previous 5 years, including the dates and amount of time in each location.
  • You must provide details of any passports you hold issued by any other country outside the nationality you are applying under.
  • Details of your family members residing in Ireland or in any other EU/EEA State (including the United Kingdom).
  • For family member residing in Ireland please provide name, nationality, date of birth, relationship to you, and registration number if applicable.
  • That you will obey the conditions of any permission which may be granted to you, and not become an unreasonable burden on the State.

 

  1. Police Clearance

You must, if over the age of 16 years, submit a Police Clearance Certificate (not more than 6 months old, to also include a criminal records check) from your country of current residence and any country you have resided in, in the 5 years prior to your application.

This 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.

 

  1. Other Requirements - (if applicable)
  • Biometrics are required from residents of Pakistan, Nigeria, China, Hong Kong and India who make a visa application (some exemptions apply). Please ensure you read our biometrics information page.
  • If you are resident in a country outside of the country which issued your passport or travel document you must submit:
    • A full colour copy of your residence permission. If you have a residence card you must photocopy both sides.
    • Documentation on previous visa refusals, other immigration issues (including deportation, overstaying) and Criminal Convictions.

For all visa / preclearance applications, if you have been refused a visa / preclearance in the past for any country, you must provide details to us. The original letter issued to you by the authorities of that country must be provided with your application.

In addition if you have:

  • Been deported from any country;
  • Been refused entry to any country; or
  • Been otherwise required to leave any country (including overstaying in any country)

You must provide original documentation issued by the authorities of that country with your application and a full explanation for consideration.

You must also provide official documentation of any criminal convictions or pending criminal charges.

Failure to do so may result in your application being refused.

Failure to disclose this information, where applicable, may result in your application being refused.

 

Relationship Categories

In all cases you must provide evidence of the claimed relationship. The onus of proof as to the genuineness of the relationship rests on you and your sponsor. If the family has elected to separate for many years it does not follow that the State is obliged to facilitate its reconstitution in the State.

 

Category 1

Spouse/civil partner of UK national

Marriages/civil partnerships must be capable of recognition under Irish law for other purposes outside of the immigration system. For immigration purposes it is not sufficient for a relationship to have developed solely over the internet or by telephone or text message. A relationship must include a number of face to face meetings (excluding webcam) between the parties.

You must provide:

  • A State issued marriage certificate/civil partnership certificate from the country in which you were married. If you married in a religious ceremony, you must also provide the religious certificate.
  • If you or your sponsor have ever been previously married/divorced you must provide your previous State issued marriage/divorce/death certificates.
  • If you have been residing with your spouse/ civil partner since your marriage, you will have to provide evidence of this. For example, lease agreements, mortgage agreement, and evidence of joint address since marriage.
  • If your sponsor (spouse/civil partner) and you have not resided together since your marriage/civil partnership, you must also provide a full account of your relationship history (where and when you met evidenced by e.g. visas, entry/exit stamps on the passport of your spouse, photographs, correspondence by e-mail, telephone etc.)

De Facto Partner of UK national

Refer to Section 6.3, 6.8 and 6.9 of the Policy Document for information on what a de facto partner is.  You must provide:

  • A full account of your relationship history (where and when you met evidenced by e.g. visas, entry/exit stamps on the passport of your partner, photographs, correspondence by e-mail, telephone etc.)
  • If you or your sponsor have ever been previously married/ divorced you must provide your previous State issued marriage/ divorce/ death certificates. If you or your partner are separated, evidence of legal separation must be supplied or evidence of cessation of cohabiting arrangements or other evidence suggesting a complete severance of the committed relationship
  • Evidence of co-habitation at least 2 years will have to be provided.

Examples of documentation which should be submitted:

  • Registration certificate of partnership (if applicable),
  • Evidence of common ownership of property,
  • Joint tenancy of property,
  • On-going correspondence addressed to both partners at the same address,
  • Financial dependence/interdependence or any other relevant documentary evidence.

 

Category 2

Children under 18

Children under 18 years, living with their parents are assumed to be automatically dependent. You cannot apply for a child cared for by the sponsor, spouse, civil or de facto partner by virtue of an informal fostering/caring arrangement.

If making an application for a child under 18 years, you are required to also provide:

  • The child’s original birth certificate or adoption certificate with their application documents.
  • Evidence of the child’s current location (for example, school attendance record)

 

If you are applying for a child where a parent is deceased:

  • You must include the original death certificate of the deceased parent.
  • If you applying for more than one child, include the original death certificate in one application and a photocopy in each other application.
  • You must provide evidence of where the child is residing.

 

If you are applying for a child where one parent has sole custody:

  • You must include the original Court Order that granted sole custody to the parent concerned.
  • If you are applying for more than one child, include a separate Court Order for each individual child (as appropriate)

 

If there are any other custody (shared/joint) arrangements in place:

  • The original Court Order must be submitted
  • evidence that the child is permitted to travel outside of country of origin/residence to reside in the State
  • The consent of the other parent is required, which should also show that they understand if the child’s application is granted, the child’s presence in the State gives no rights to visit or reside in the State to them.     
  • A clear colour copy of the biodata page of the parent’s passport or, in the absence of a passport, national ID which displays their photo and signature.
  • Evidence that the child is a full-time member of the household.

Children over 18 years

You must submit:

  • The birth certificate / adoption certificate of the child.
  • Evidence of pre-existing sustained support:
    • Financial support – including amount of, frequency and duration of the support provided by your sponsor. This can include copies of your sponsor’s bank statements showing transfers to your account, copies of your bank statements showing receipt of those amounts, etc.
    • Any other supports you wish to have considered.
  • Evidence of current address.
  • Any other source of income they have.
  • Details of any other family members in their country of origin / residence.

If they are under 23 years, and remain in full time education:

  • Documentary evidence that they are in full time education, and will continue their education in this State. This, for example, would include letters from school/college/university, transcripts, exam results and attendance records. Any letters from school/colleges/universities should outline all relevant details of your current course and prospective course, including year of study, fees etc.

If they are over 18 years and not in full time education:

  • If they have no other source of income, evidence of why they are unable to work, why they are not eligible for state benefits etc.,
  • Their living costs (e.g. evidence of mortgage/rent, utility, food, medical, education payments etc.),
  • Their medical condition (where relevant),
  • Any guardianship (or equivalent legal) order (where applicable).

 

Category 3

Dependent Parents

If you are making your application as an elderly dependent parent, you must provide documentary evidence to establish that you are actually dependent on your sponsor and there is no viable alternative to you coming to the State.

You must satisfy the criteria set out in detail in Section 8 of the Policy Document.

While the nature of the documentary evidence may vary from case to case evidence of the following will normally be relevant.

  • You must provide documentary evidence to demonstrate the familial link (State issued birth certificates, marriage certificates.)
  • You must provide documentary evidence of the amount, frequency and duration of the financial support provided by your sponsor (for example, copies of your sponsor’s bank statements showing transfers to your account, copies of your bank statements showing receipt of those amounts),
  • Evidence of all sources of income that you may have, if you have no other source of income, evidence of why you are unable to work, why you are not eligible for state benefits etc.,
  • Evidence of all your living costs (for example, evidence of mortgage/rent, utility, food, medical, education payments)
  • Details of all other family members in your country of residence/ home country,
  • Evidence of your medical condition (where relevant)
  • Evidence of your current address and who you reside with
  • Evidence of ongoing contact with your sponsor

Sponsor documents

  • You, as the sponsor, must provide:
  • A full colour copy of your current UK passport. 
  • A full colour copy of any other current passport you hold.
  • A full colour copy of all previous passports you have held.
    • A letter of sponsorship which includes the following
    • Your full name, postal address and the applicant’s application number.
    • If applicable, details of all accompanying family members including their application transaction numbers.
    • Confirmation that you are acting as the sponsor of this application.
    • The date you started living at your current address, and any previous addresses you have resided at in the previous 5 years, including the amount of time in each location.
    • Details of any passports you hold issued by any other country.
    • If you have resided in Ireland in the past, your PPSN.
    • If you have any criminal convictions or pending criminal charges in any country.
    • If you have come to the adverse attention of Gardai, you must provide the details (and supporting documentary evidence)
    • If you have acted as a sponsor for any other family members in the past 7 years
  • Your sponsor will need to provide detailed evidence of accommodation and its suitability.
  • Your sponsor must sign a legal undertaking to the effect that they will bear complete financial responsibility for the dependent parent and that any State funds availed of by the relative will be reimbursed by the sponsor.

 

Police Clearance

You must submit a Police Clearance Certificate (not more than 6 months old, to also include a criminal records check) from your country of current residence and any country you have resided in, in the 5 years prior to your application.

This 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.

Finances

  • Up to date 6 months bank statements for all accounts held - Bank statements must be on headed bank paper. You may use a printed internet statement but it must be officially certified by your bank. This means that every page must be notarised by the bank and the statement must be accompanied by a letter from the bank. We will not accept uncertified internet statements.

They must show:

  • The full name of the owner of the account
  • Address
  • The bank account number and account type
  • Money paid in and out of the account over the last six (6) months immediately prior to the application. (i.e. income and expenditure) and
  • If you are also sending a bank statement from a deposit/savings account, you must
    • Include a letter from your bank confirming that you can take money from that account.

Please note that handwritten entries or details on a bank statement are not accepted.

  • Your tax returns for the previous 3 years
  • Evidence of your current employment
    • A copy of your work contract,
    • A letter from your employer confirming how long you have worked there and your current job title and
    • 3 recent payslips

 

  • If self-employed, you will need to provide
    • Tax assessment from the Revenue Commissioner/ Tax authorities of the country in which you live for the previous 3 financial years, and
    • Bank statements of the business for the last six months.
    • Evidence of any earnings since the last tax return was filed.  
    • You must also provide evidence of how you intend to support the applicant and any dependents, if applicable, in Ireland without recourse to public funds.
  • If you are residing with sufficient resources you must also provide documentary evidence of the financial resources (for example the amount, the source etc.)
  • Evidence of employment or self-employment in Ireland that demonstrates that you are capable of earning a sufficient level of income (the amounts are specified in the Policy Document) to support your family members for the duration of proposed residence in Ireland. 

Accommodation

You must provide evidence that you have sourced appropriate accommodation for your family members in Ireland without recourse to public funds. Evidence of the accommodation and costs should be outlined in your application.

What happens after I apply?

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

  • Selected the correct reason for travel on your application form
  • Attached supporting documentation
  • Paid the application fee

 

Applications are processed in the chronological order they are received.

Please note that the onus is on the applicant to supply the relevant documentation to us and to satisfy the processing officer that the visa or preclearance sought should be granted.

Applicants are advised to allow up to 6 months for the processing of applications.

My application has been approved, what happens now?

Non Visa Required Nationals:

We will notify you if your application is approved, and will send you a preclearance letter of approval. It is important that you check your details on this letter for any errors. Your Preclearance letter is an important document. You will need it to present to an Immigration Officer at border control and, if granted entry, for Immigration Registration.

The preclearance letter is valid for 6 months. If you do not use it to travel to Ireland within the validity period on the letter, you must recommence the application process and submit a new application.

Do not travel to Ireland with an expired Preclearance letter of approval.

It is also recommended that you have clear evidence of your medical insurance cover with you when you arrive at the border.

Visa Required Nationals:

We will notify you if your application is approved and a Long Stay D visa (Join Family UK National) will be placed in your passport by the relevant office. You will need this to travel to Ireland. You will need it to show it to an Immigration Officer at border control and, if granted entry, for Immigration Registration. It is important that you check your visa for any errors.

Your visa will be valid for 6 months from the date of approval. If you do not use your visa during the validity period, you must recommence the application process and submit a new application.

You will not be permitted to travel to Ireland unless your visa is valid.

It is also recommended that you have clear evidence of your medical insurance cover with you when you arrive at the border.

For further information on travelling to Ireland: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/travel-with-children

My application has been refused can I appeal?

We will notify you by letter if your application is refused. This letter will outline the reasons why your application was refused.

The refusal letter will also tell you if you are permitted to appeal the decision. In some cases you may not be permitted to appeal (for example if you provide false or misleading information in your application).

The appeal process is free of charge.

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 8 weeks of the date of the refusal letter.

You must submit appeals by post only. We cannot accept faxes or emails.

Non Visa Required Nationals

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 as you will not be allowed enter the country.

If your appeal is refused, you cannot request another appeal. Only one appeal is permitted per application. In most cases you may make a fresh application.

Visa Required Nationals

If your appeal is approved, a Long Stay D visa (Join Family – UK National) will be placed in your passport by the relevant office as described above. If your appeal is refused, we will send you a letter outlining the reasons.

You cannot request another appeal. Only one appeal is permitted per application.  Do not attempt to come to Ireland without a visa as you will not be allowed enter the country. In most cases you may make a fresh application.

I have travelled to Ireland as the De Facto Partner of an Irish National with preclearance approval or on a long stay ‘D’ Irish visa, and I am now in Ireland. What happens next?

Immigration permission and registration

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

  • Extend your permission to stay for longer than 90 days (i.e. as the family member of a UK National) and to
  • Register your details with Immigration.

If your appointment is successful, you will be given immigration permission to stay as the family member of a UK national for an initial 12 month period.

Please note that children under 16 years are not required to register. For further information: application for a re-entry visa for a minor under 16.

If the dependent parent of a UK citizen, your permission will be based on immigration stamp 0.

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. You must continue to meet the criteria set out in the Policy Document.

I am here as a visitor, can I apply for permission to stay as the family member of a UK citizen while I am in Ireland?

No you cannot enter Ireland as a visitor and then seek to remain as the family member of a UK citizen under this Scheme. You must apply from outside of Ireland, from your country of legal residence, and remain outside of the State while your application is being processed. Applications will not be accepted from inside the State.

If my circumstances change who do I contact?

You must notify the Department of Justice of any change in circumstances within 2 weeks of such change in circumstances arising. 

Department of Justice (Immigration Service Delivery)
Domestic Residence and Permissions Division
Unit 2, 13-14 Burgh Quay
Dublin 2

This includes:

  • death of the sponsor,
  • departure from the State of the sponsor,
  • divorce or annulment of a civil partnership,
  • breakdown in de facto relationship.


In such circumstances, you may request permission in writing to reside in the State on an individual and personal basis from the Department in accordance with the procedures and policies in place. Such requests are dealt with on a case by case basis.

Consideration will be given (not limited to) to the following:

  • ​the length of time the sponsor resided in the State before they died or departed the State,
  • character and conduct of the sponsor,
  • duration of marriage/civil partnership or de facto relationship,
  • any children of the relationship,
  • the length of time the applicant resided in the State,
  • the current relationship status of the applicant,
  • previous and current activities of the applicant, for example, history of employment, self-employment, periods of study, dependency on sponsor or other person or dependency on Irish State support,
  • any other relevant information.

In the case where your permission is based on being the family member of a UK citizen, and you are the victim of domestic violence, you may apply for an immigration permission in your own right. 

Victims of Domestic Violence Immigration Guidelines

Does the preclearance/visa procedure apply if I am already in the State on another valid permission stamp (Stamp 1,2,3, etc. )?

Where you hold a separate immigration permission within the State for the purpose of study, work etc, and subsequently becomes the spouse, civil partner or de facto partner of a UK citizen, a change of status request may be made to the Department of Justice.

Department of Justice (Immigration Service Delivery)
Domestic Residence and Permissions Division
Unit 2, 13-14 Burgh Quay
Dublin 2
D02 XK70

Published 23/12/2020