Oirish passport by naturalisation processbtaining Irish citizenship holds significant advantages for individuals seeking to connect with Ireland’s rich cultural heritage and vibrant society. It grants the right to live, work, and study in Ireland without restrictions, as well as unrestricted travel within the European Union (EU).

As an Irish citizen, it also provides access to Ireland’s world-class healthcare and education systems. Additionally, Irish citizens can participate in the democratic process, including voting in elections and referendums.

Overall, obtaining Irish citizenship provides practical benefits and offers a chance to become part of a welcoming and diverse community deeply rooted in a country with a storied history and a bright future.

Benefits of Irish Citizenship

What are some of the advantages of being a citizen of Ireland? Here are a few reasons why you should rejoice if you’re entitled to Irish citizenship:

EU and UK privileges

Irish citizens enjoy a unique status, granting them EU and UK privileges. As citizens of Ireland, they are automatically EU citizens, providing them with the right to live, work, and travel freely in any other EU member state. Additionally, due to the Common Travel Area (CTA) arrangement between Ireland and the UK, Irish citizens also have special privileges in the UK.

They can live and work in the UK without applying for a residency permit, accessing many of the rights British citizens enjoy. This dual status not only reflects the historical ties between Ireland and the UK but also underscores the reciprocal nature of the relationship, allowing Irish citizens to integrate seamlessly into both the EU and UK communities.

Access to an Irish passport

Irish passports are recognized as one of the most powerful globally, offering visa free or visa on arrival access to 174 countries. Countries include those that provide electronic travel authorization, simple e-visas, and visa applications upon arrival. This passport facilitates enhanced mobility and serves as solid proof of your right to permanently reside in Ireland.

Voting rights and political participation

As an Irish citizen, you can vote in local and national elections and referendums. You’re also eligible to stand for public office, allowing you to actively participate and influence the political landscape of your community and country.

Free healthcare

Another significant advantage is access to Ireland’s free health service, which provides free healthcare to all Irish citizens. This includes a wide range of medical services, ensuring your health and well-being are taken care of without the burden of medical expenses. Additionally, Irish nationals can seek free health treatment in any other EU member state with a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), further enhancing the benefits of an Irish passport.

Eligibility for public funds

Unlike visa holders, who are often restricted from public funds, Irish passport holders can claim benefits in Ireland. This includes financial support such as a jobseeker’s allowance or child benefit, offering a safety net in times of need.

No work restrictions

There are no restrictions on your right to work in Ireland. The Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act allows Irish citizens to pursue any career or job without additional permissions or work visas.

How to Obtain Irish Citizenship

Irish citizenship confers legal membership in the Republic of Ireland, granting individuals a set of rights and responsibilities. It allows one to work, study, and live in Ireland without restrictions.

Irish citizenship by birthright

irish citizenship acts as eu citizenshipIrish citizenship by birth is determined by the principles of jus soli and jus sanguinis, which respectively refer to citizenship based on where a person is born and the citizenship of their blood relatives.

Prior to 1 January 2005, a person born on the island of Ireland was automatically considered an Irish citizen. This applied regardless of the nationality of the child’s parents and included people born on the entire island of Ireland, including Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom.

The 27th Amendment to the Irish Constitution introduced a new law to the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act, altering the eligibility criteria for individuals born in the Irish State to incorporate the

status of their parents. Based on the new law, a child born in Ireland after 31 December 2004 must have had at least one parent who was an Irish citizen or resided in Ireland legally for at least three of the four years before birth for them to qualify for Irish citizenship.

The Adopted child of an Irish citizenship is also entitled to Irish citizenship, provided the parent acquires immigration clearance in advance from the Department of Justice.

Irish citizenship and the Good Friday Agreement

The Belfast Agreement, commonly called the Good Friday Agreement, was signed on 10 April 1998. Part of the agreement entitles people born in Northern Ireland to both Irish and British citizenship or dual citizenship in both countries. Entitlement to Irish citizenship for children born in Ireland includes those with British parents based on this agreement between the Irish and British governments.

Irish citizenship by descent

Irish citizenship by descent allows individuals born abroad to become Irish citizens based on their familial connections. Any persons born abroad with at least one parent born on the island of Ireland who had Irish citizenship at the time of their birth is automatically considered an Irish citizen.

Children born abroad without a parent born in Ireland or with a foreign parent who was entitled to Irish citizenship at the time of their birth may still be granted citizenship, provided they have their birth registered in the Foreign Births Register. Foreign birth registration allows descendants of Irish nationals living abroad to apply for Irish citizenship.

Citizenship through Irish grandparents

Applications for Irish citizenship based on Irish descent or Irish associations extend to those with Irish grandparents. A child with at least one grandparent born on the island of Ireland is entitled to Irish citizenship, provided they fulfill the foreign birth registration requirement. Additionally, a child can claim citizenship if they have a great-grandparent born in Ireland; however, their parent who was entitled to Irish citizenship must have been entered into the Foreign Births Register at birth.

Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) maintains the Foreign Births Register and is the only government department that can approve or deny an Irish ancestry application. All rights to ancestral Irish citizenship depends on foreign birth registration.

Irish citizenship by marriage

Obtaining Irish citizenship through marriage to an Irish citizen is a well-established process. It involves several steps and criteria. Typically, you must have been married for at least three years and lived with them in Ireland for three out of the last five years before you can apply for Irish citizenship by marriage.

In some cases, the civil partner of an Irish national may hold the right to be granted citizenship, but this is assessed on a case-by-case basis.

The last crucial criterion is a character of good standing. This means having a clean criminal record and not being involved in any illegal activities. Additionally, you should have a genuine and ongoing commitment to the relationship with the Irish citizen.

Other factors to consider:

  • You’ll need to provide your marriage certificate, passport, proof of residence, and evidence of your spouse’s Irish citizenship.
  • Irish “reckonable residence” includes 12 months of physical residence in Ireland before applying for citizenship.

Irish citizenship by naturalization

Iirish citizen born in irelandrish citizenship through naturalization is a process by which foreign nationals can be granted Irish citizenship and an Irish passport. This process allows individuals not born in Ireland to become legal citizens, provided they meet specific criteria set forth by Irish law.

Typically, individuals must have lived in Ireland for a specified period before they are eligible to apply for naturalization, which is currently five out of the last nine years (reckonable residence). Also, you must have one year’s continuous residence in Ireland immediately before the date of application.

To become an Irish citizen, you must prove:

Typically, individuals must have lived in Ireland for a specified period before they are eligible to apply for naturalization, which is currently five out of the last nine years (reckonable residence). Also, you must have one year’s continuous residence in Ireland immediately before the date of application.

To become an Irish citizen, you must prove:

  • You are of good character and standing
  • Committed to Irish laws and values
  • Will attend a citizenship ceremony and make the declaration of fidelity.

If you are a non-EU/EEA or Swiss national, you additionally have to prove:

  • You have been, and are now, legally resident in Ireland
  • Have built up enough reckonable residence in Ireland

Nonetheless, Ireland is one of three European Union countries that does not have a language requirement to fulfill its criteria for naturalization. Irish citizenship requirements don’t include proving proficiency in the Irish or English language to qualify for citizenship.

How to Apply for Irish Citizenship

To apply for Irish citizenship, you must complete several forms depending on your circumstances and the grounds for your claim to Irish citizenship.

If you were born outside of Ireland to a parent who was an Irish citizen at the time of your birth or you have an Irish-born grandparent, your birth must first be entered into the Foreign Births Register. The personal documents required are:

  • Completed, signed, and witnessed application form.
  • Original civil birth certificate showing parental details.
  • Original civil marriage certificate (if applicable)
  • Photocopy of current state-issued ID document
  • Two separate original proofs of address

Additionally, to prove your Irish associations, you must also provide:

  • Original civil birth certificate of Irish citizen parent
  • Original civil marriage certificate of Irish parent
  • Photocopy of current state-issued ID document
  • Original civil death certificate (if applicable)

The same documentation must be provided for your Irish-born grandparent if that’s the most recent tie to the country.

When you submit all the necessary documents, you’re required to pay the €278 application fee, which covers the foreign birth registration, an official certificate, and postage and handling.

Applying for Irish citizenship by naturalization

  1. Confirm eligibility and gather the necessary documents: Verify that you meet the residency requirements through the Department of Justice’s reckonable residence calculator. Gather necessary documentation, including proof of residence, evidence of good character, and other supporting documents.
  2. Complete the citizenship application form: Fill out the application form for naturalization on the Irish Immigration Service website.
  3. Pay application fees: Pay the applicable fees for processing the application.
  4. Wait for a decision: The Immigration Service Delivery (ISD) will review and approve your application on behalf of the Minister for Justice.
  5. Make your citizenship declaration: Successful applicants must attend a citizenship ceremony and take an oath of fidelity.
  6. Receive your certificate of naturalization: After taking an oath of fidelity, you will receive a certificate of naturalization, and you can then apply for an Irish passport.

Citizenship ceremony

The final step in becoming an Irish citizen is to go through the citizenship ceremony. This is a special occasion to complete the naturalization process, after which you can apply for an Irish passport.

Citizenship ceremonies are conducted in the country where you live, and you will receive an invitation to your ceremony by post or e-mail. At the ceremony, you will take an oath of fidelity to the nation.

You do not become an Irish citizen until you have made your declaration, after which your certificate of naturalization will be issued by registered post in the weeks following the ceremony.

Irish Citizenship Processing Time

Applications for Irish nationality through foreign births are processed in strict date order. This means you can’t skip the line to get ahead of others to hasten your application. If someone else applied before you, their application will be processed first.

According to the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs, the process can take up to nine months before you become an Irish citizen.

Irish Dual Citizenship

retain irish citizenshipIreland allows dual citizenship, meaning individuals can hold citizenship from Ireland and another country simultaneously. This stance is reflected in Irish law, and the Irish government does not require individuals to renounce their previous citizenship when acquiring Irish citizenship.

This also means that Irish nationals retain Irish citizenship when they become legal nationals of another country.

Dual citizens enjoy the full rights and privileges of citizenship in both countries. This includes the right to live, work, and vote in each country, as well as access to social services, education, and healthcare. They can also travel freely between their two countries without the need for visas or other travel restrictions.

However, there are some things to keep in mind. When you obtain Irish citizenship and become a dual citizen, you are subject to the laws and responsibilities of both countries. This includes tax obligations, military service (if applicable), and adherence to other legal requirements.

Irish Citizenship and the Irish Free State

Irish citizenship refers to the legal status of being recognized as a citizen of Ireland, a sovereign nation located on the island of Ireland. The concept of Irish citizenship has evolved over time, and its historical context includes the establishment of the Irish Free State.

The Irish Free State was created in 1922 as a dominion within the British Commonwealth following the Anglo-Irish Treaty. It marked Ireland’s partial independence from the United Kingdom. However, it was not until 1949 that Ireland officially became a republic, severing its ties to the Commonwealth and establishing itself as a fully sovereign state. This transition had implications for citizenship.

How to Get an Irish Passport

You can request an Irish passport through the following:

  • Online: An online passport application service is offered by the Department of Foreign Affairs.
  • Post office: A local Post Office can verify your documents and send them to HM Passport Office by Special Delivery. This requires an additional fee.

Irish citizens living abroad must submit passport applications to their nearest Irish Embassy or Consulate.

Required documents

Irish passport applications require original documents to prove citizenship. Depending on how you obtain citizenship, these may include:

  • An Irish birth certificate
  • Proof of parents’ immigration status and residency status at the time of your birth
  • Certificate of your parents’ or other eligible relatives’ foreign birth registration.
  • A marriage certificate
  • A certificate of naturalization
  • Your supporting documents
  • Verification of your identity by a member of An Garda Síochána in Ireland or an appropriate witness outside of the State, such as an individual with a professional standing

Non-English or Irish documents must be accompanied by sworn translations.

How Can Global Citizen Solutions Help You?

Global Citizen Solutions is a boutique migration consultancy firm with years of experience delivering bespoke residence and citizenship by investment solutions for international families. With offices worldwide and an experienced, hands-on team, we have helped hundreds of clients worldwide acquire citizenship, residence visas, or homes while diversifying their portfolios with robust investments.

We guide you from start to finish, taking you beyond your citizenship or residency by investment application.

Frequently Asked Questions about How to Get Irish Citizenship

Can a US citizen get Irish citizenship?

US citizens can claim Irish citizenship through descent, marriage, residency, or naturalization, provided they meet all the requirements. Numerous US nationals have acquired Irish citizenship based on familial connections, diplomatic relations, and a shared historical background. Both the United States and Ireland allow dual citizenship, meaning Americans can hold US dual citizenship with Ireland.

Is Ireland an easy country to get citizenship?

That depends on how strong your application is. In most cases, it is a fairly straightforward process, and if all your documents are in order and you meet the legal requirements, there should be a reason for your application to be denied.

How do I become an Irish citizen through marriage to an Irish national?

To become an Irish citizen through a marriage, you must be legally married to an Irish citizen, and the marriage must be recognized under Irish law. In some cases, a civil partnership is also recognized. Typically, you must have lived in Ireland for three out of the last five years before you can apply for citizenship through marriage.

Is there a residency requirement for obtaining Irish citizenship through naturalization?

Yes, there is. Individuals must have lived in Ireland for a specified period of time before they are eligible to apply for naturalization, which is currently five out of the last nine years. Also, you are required to have one year’s continuous residence in Ireland immediately before the date of application.

How long does it typically take to get Irish citizenship after applying?

You should have a lot of patience when you apply for Irish citizenship. Depending on your route, the process can take anywhere from nine months to two years.

Are there language or integration requirements for Irish citizenship applicants?

Generally, there are no language tests that you’d have to complete, and there are no formal integration requirements within an Irish citizenship application.

Can British citizens get Irish citizenship?

British citizens find it relatively easier to obtain Irish citizenship due to historical, legal, and cultural connections between the two nations. The Belfast Agreement, signed in 1998, reinforced the close ties between the United Kingdom and Ireland, promoting peace and cooperation. This agreement allows a British citizen from Northern Ireland to choose British, Irish, or dual citizenship.

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