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Immigration & Work Permits

Work Permits

Foreign workers are required to have the proper visas and work permits in Ireland, as established by immigration laws. Work permits must be secured for employees, and sponsored by a locally licensed and incorporated entity, which can be a problem for companies just entering the Irish market. If you have yet to complete the incorporation process, you can use an outsourced management company or GEO to sponsor the employee for the necessary permits.

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When in the process of hiring EEA nationals or foreigners, employers should proceed as follows:

EEA nationals do not require employment permits to work in Ireland. Swiss nationals are also exempt from any requirement to obtain an employment permit to work in Ireland. An employment permit will generally not be granted where to do so would result in more than 50 per cent of a company’s employees being non-EEA nationals.

Special dispensation may be made where the employer is a start-up company with enterprise agency support, that are applying for critical skills, general or intra-company transfer employment permits. In such instances the requirement may be waived, by up to two years from the date the start-up registered with the Revenue Commissioners as an employer.

The Employment Permits Acts 2003–2014 apply significant penalties for employing non-EEA nationals without a valid employment permit. The maximum penalty for such an offence is a fine of up to a maximum of €250,000, up to 10 years’ imprisonment, or both. Most employment work permits will be for up to two years, however, these can be renewed, if required. There is no requirement under the relevant legislation in Ireland to keep a register of foreign workers, however, it is good practice that the employer keep a note of all work permits, in particular their expiration date, to ensure that all employees have a valid work permit in place. 

Process of sponsoring worker

The first step of the sponsorship process is for the employer to obtain an employment permit from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation (DJEI).

There are different types of employment permits issued by DJEI including Critical Skills Employment Permits and Work Permits. DJEI will shortly introduce a new range of employment permits. The correct visa type for a holder of any type of employment permit issued by DJEI is the Employment (Permits etc.).

It is possible to apply for an Employment (Permits etc.) visa up to 3 months before the date the employee will travel to Ireland. If employees are visiting another state prior to travelling to Ireland, they must have the relevant visa for that state in their passport before be considered for an Irish visa.

Employer Documentation Required

Upon completion of the online application process, it is necessary to follow the instructions on the summary application form that is created by the online system. The summary form will contain information on where employees sponsored have to submit their supporting documentation. The summary form which they must print, sign and date must be submitted with their supporting documentation.

Employees may be required to provide their biometrics information as part of the application process.

If applicants submit any false or misleading information, or false supporting documentation as part of their application, it may result in the refusal of their application without the right of appeal. It may also result in them being prevented from making further Irish visa applications for a period of 5 years.

The supporting documentation is as following:

  • Two colour passport sized photographs not more than 6 months old
  • A current passport and a full copy of any previous passports, that must be valid for at least 6 months afterthe intended date of departure from Ireland.
  • A signed letter of application including your full contact details:
  • Employment Permit from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation
  • Employment Contract (if any)
  • Letter from employer in Ireland
  • Evidence of qualifications and previous work experience
  • Finances
  • Medical/Travel Insurance
  • Previous Visa Refusals

 

Supporting documentation

If applicants submit a document that is not in English, 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 from 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).

Time

Applications for Employment Permits are processed in date order. Applicants can generally expect a decision within 8 weeks from the date on which your application is lodged at the Visa Office/Embassy/Consulate.

The application may take longer if e.g. applicants have not submitted the necessary supporting documentation, their supporting documentation needs to be verified or because of their personal circumstances (e.g. if they have a criminal conviction).

It is possible to check the processing times for the Visa Office/Embassy/Consulate that is handling your application on their website.

Cost

The fees for visas are as follow:

  • Single entry €60
  • Multi entry €100
  • Transit €25

The visa fee is an administration fee which covers the cost of processing your application. This fee cannot be refunded if the application is refused or withdrawn.

Activities not permitted with this Visa

Applicants are not permitted to take up any form of employment, other than that for which you have already been approved.

Use the Shield GEO Employer of Record Solution

Once you get in touch with us, one of our consultants will take all the work off your hand, co-ordinate with our local partners to get all the required permits organised, provide the processing time, costs, document-checklist and keep you informed through the process. Contact us to know more.

Types of visas in Ireland

Category Description of Visa
Employment Visa (Atypical Working Scheme) It is possible to apply for an employment visa (Atypical Working Scheme) upon approval from the Atypical Working Scheme Division of the Irish Naturalization and Immigration Service to take up short term employment in Ireland.

It is possible to apply for the visa up to 3 months before your date of travel to Ireland.

When visiting another state prior to travelling to Ireland, it is necessary to have the relevant visa for that state in your passport before applying for an Irish visa.
 
1. How to apply

Upon completion of the online application process, applicants must follow the instructions on the summary application form that is created by the online system. The summary form will contain information on where the applicant must submit the supporting documentation. The summary form which must be printed, sign and date must be also submitted with the supporting documentation.

Applicants may be required to provide their biometric information as part of the application process.
 
2. A guide to supporting documentation.

If applicants submit any false or misleading information, or false supporting documentation as part of their application, it may result in the refusal of their application without the right of appeal. It may also result in them being prevented from making further Irish visa applications for a period of 5 years.

The supporting documentation is as following:

• Two colour passport sized photographs not more than 6 months old;
• Your current passport and a full copy of any previous passports. Your current passport must be valid for at least 6 months after your intended date of departure from Ireland;
• A signed letter of application including your full contact details;
• Valid Atypical Working Scheme Approval Letter;
• Evidence of your obligations to return to your country of permanent residence;
• Medical/Travel Insurance;
• Previous Visa Refusals.
 
3. Fees

The fees for visas are:

• Single entry €60
• Multi entry €100
• Transit  €25
 
4. How long it will take

Applications are processed in date order.
Applicants can generally expect a decision within 8 weeks from the date on which their application is lodged at the Visa Office/Embassy/Consulate.
 
5. Activities not permitted with this Visa
With the present visa you are not permitted to:

• undertake other paid or unpaid work,
• access any public funds.
 
6. Supporting documentation

If applicants submit a document that is not in English, 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 from a business, company or other organizations 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 organization, telephone number (landline), website, and email address (email addresses such as Yahoo or Hotmail are not accepted.
Long Stay Visas (Longer than 3 months) If foreigners wish to travel to Ireland for more than 3 months, for example to pursue a course of study, for work or to settle permanently in Ireland with family members who are already resident in Ireland, then they can apply for a long stay ‘D’ visa for a single entry.

Before making an application for a long stay ‘D’ visa please make sure that you are familiar with the immigration arrangements that apply to persons seeking to come to Ireland for more than 3 months, whether to study, to work or to settle permanently with family members who are already resident in Ireland.

If applicants are granted a long stay ‘D’ visa and wish to remain in the State for longer than 3 months, or beyond the period of leave granted to them by an Immigration Officer at an Irish port of entry they will be required to register and obtain a residence permit.
Employment (Van der Elst) It is possible to apply for this visa when applicants are:

• lawfully resident in the EU Member State in which the employer is established;
• lawfully employed by the employer in the sending EU Member State;
• on the payroll of the employer in the sending EU Member State;
• coming to Ireland to provide services on behalf of your employer;
• coming to Ireland on a temporary/short term contract, up to a maximum of 12 consecutive months.

It is possible to apply for an Employment (Van der Elst) visa up to 3 months before the date of travel to Ireland.
When visiting another State prior to travelling to Ireland, applicants must have the relevant visa for that State in their passport before applying for an Irish visa.

2. How to apply

Upon completion of the online application process, applicants must follow the instructions on the summary application form that is created by the online system. The summary form will contain information on where applicants must submit their supporting documentation.
The summary form which they must print, sign and date must be submitted with their supporting documentation.
Applicants may be required to provide their biometrics information as part of the application process.
 
3. A guide to supporting documentation is set out below.

If applicants submit any false or misleading information, or false supporting documentation as part of their application, it may result in the refusal of their application without the right of appeal. It may also result in them being prevented from making further Irish visa applications for a period of 5 years.

The supporting documentation is as following:

• Two color passport sized photographs not more than 6 months old;
• Your current passport and a full copy of any previous passports. Your current passport must be valid for at least 12 months after your intended date of departure from Ireland;
• Evidence of your right to reside and work in the sending EU Member State and of permission to return there following the termination of the contract in Ireland;
• A signed letter of application including your full contact details;
• Letter from your employer in the sending EU Member State;
• Letter from the Irish based host company;
• Medical/Travel Insurance;
• Previous Visa Refusals.

4.  Fees

Please refer to the table of Fees for information on the fee that you are required to pay.
Some applicants are exempt from the requirement to pay the visa fee. Read more here.

You may be required to pay additional charges e.g. relating to the submission of your documents.
You may be able to pay the fee in local currency.
The website of the Visa Office/Embassy/ Consulate will have details about additional charges and local payment options.
 
4.  How long it will take

Applications are processed in date order.
You are advised not to purchase travel tickets before you know the outcome of your visa application.

Processing times can vary between countries. They can also vary during high volume periods during the year. However, you can generally expect a decision within 8 weeks from the date on which your application is lodged at the Visa Office/Embassy/Consulate.  

Your application may take longer if e.g. you have not submitted all necessary supporting documentation, your supporting documentation needs to be verified or because of your personal circumstances (e.g. if you have a criminal conviction).
You can check the processing times for the Visa Office/Embassy/Consulate that is handling your application on their website.

If your application is being processed by the Visa Office, Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service, Department of Justice and Equality, 13-14 Burgh Quay, Dublin you can check the date of the applications currently being processed on our Following your Application page.
 
5.  Activities not permitted with this Visa

You are not permitted to:
• undertake other paid or unpaid work, other than that for which you have already been approved,
• access any public funds.
 
6.  Supporting documentation

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, 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 from 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.
Business Visa It is possible to apply for this visa when working outside Ireland and willing to come to Ireland to carry out activities relating to a personal job e.g.attend meetings, attend trade shows for promotional work, arrange deals or negotiate or sign trade agreements or contracts, carry out fact finding missions.

It is possible to can apply for a business visa up to 3 months before the date of travel to Ireland.

If applicants are visiting another state prior to travelling to Ireland, they must have the relevant visa for that state in your passport before applying for an Irish visa.
 
2.  How to apply

Upon completion of the online application process, applicants must follow the instructions on the summary application form that is created by the online system. The summary form will contain information on where they have to submit their supporting documentation.
The summary form which applicants must print, sign and date must be submitted with their supporting documentation.
Applicants may be required to provide their biometric information as part of the application process.
 
3. A guide to supporting documentation.

If applicants submit any false or misleading information, or false supporting documentation as part of their application, it may result in the refusal of their application without the right of appeal. It may also result in them being prevented from making further Irish visa applications for a period of 5 years.

The supporting documentation is as following:

• Two color passport sized photographs not more than 6 months old;
• A current passport and a full copy of any previous passports, that must be valid for at least 6 months after the intended date of departure from Ireland;
• A signed letter of application including your full contact details;
• Accommodation and travel details;
• Finances;
• Link to Host Company in Ireland;
• Evidence of your obligations to return to your country of permanent residence;
• Suggestions on how to show evidence of your obligations to return;
• Details of any family members;
• Evidence of any property you own/rent;
• Medical/Travel Insurance;
• Previous Visa Refusals.

3.  Fees

The fees for visas are:
• Single entry €60
• Multi entry €100
• Transit €25
 
4.  How long it will take

Applications are processed in date order. Applicants can generally expect a decision within 8 weeks from the date on which your application is lodged at the Visa Office/Embassy/Consulate.  
 
5.  Activities not permitted with this Visa

With this visa it is not permitted to:
• undertake other paid or unpaid work,
• access any public funds.
 
6.  Supporting documentation

If applicants submit a document that is not in English, 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 from a business, company or other organization 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 organization, telephone number (landline), website, and email address (email addresses such as Yahoo or Hotmail are not accepted.
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