What is the cost of Irish Citizenship?
Irish citizenship costs vary depending on the route you take to become a citizen. For example, if you choose to become a citizen via the naturalization route, you will incur costs for visas, financial requirements for the visa, renewal fees for the visas, and other visa and residency registration costs.
However, if you are becoming a citizen by birth, you may only need to pay for registering in the foreign birth register or any other registration process as required by the Irish immigration authorities.
Also, note that there may be other costs as well as costs for the citizenship ceremony, residency in Ireland, and so on. We have covered the costs for each route to Irish citizenship below.
1. Irish citizenship through Naturalisation
To become a naturalized Irish citizen, you must first show “reckonable residence” by living in Ireland for at least five of the last nine years. You may live there on and off during your lifetime, but you must reside in the state for a year before submitting an application. You must also have lived in the country for at least 1,460 days within the last eight years.
You must keep your immigration residence up to date throughout the period. You’ll need to be able to show that you were lawfully in Ireland at all times during that time span. Permission stamps from Irish immigration officials provide evidence of this.
If you are in a civil partnership or married relationship with an Irish national, you may be able to apply for naturalisation after three years of reckonable residence. The same goes if you have dependent children who are Irish citizens. You may need proof of your identity, address, and marital status as part of your application.
The standard requirements
Depending on your age, origin, and present conditions, you must fill out various application forms to be eligible for Irish citizenship by naturalisation. These are the standard requirements:
- Are 18+ or have been married to an Irish national for over three years.
- Intend to settle in Ireland.
- At an official citizenship ceremony, you declare fidelity.
- Have intentions to continue living in Ireland.
- Make a declaration of fidelity at an official citizenship ceremony.
- Meet marriage or residency requirements (marriage certificate).
- Bear a good moral character.
However, if you don’t meet the requirement for reckonable residence, you might still become an Irish citizen through other measures.
If you have Irish connections or work for the state, you may be eligible for citizenship without fulfilling these criteria. You can also apply for citizenship if you are a refugee or “related by affinity” to an Irish citizen. These are just a few circumstances under which the Minister for Justice and Equality might grant you citizenship outside the normal procedure.
The application process
The process depends on how you prove reckonable residence in Ireland for naturalisation, if you are a Swiss citizen, and other factors. Here is a general overview of what you can expect.
If you think you might be eligible for Irish citizenship through naturalisation, the first step is to complete an application form. The forms and any other documentation that may be required can be found on the INIS website.
Ensure you have all of the required supporting documents before going through the process. These papers differ based on the application type.
You’ll sign the form before a witness and submit it when you’ve gathered all the correct papers and the form is complete and accurate. Each application form has a checklist to assist you in completing each stage correctly.
A non-negotiable fee of €175 must be paid for each application, which must be paid through bank drafts made payable to the Secretary General, Department of Justice.
One must pay for a Certificate of Naturalisation once the application is approved as per the following:
- For each adult: €950
- For each minor: €200
- For each widower, widow or Surviving Civil Partner of an Irish citizen: €200
- For every recognised refugee or stateless person: Free
The fees must be paid using bank drafts made payable to the Secretary General, Department of Justice.
Though processing time varies from case to case, it takes an average of 23 months currently for the application to be processed, i.e., from the date of receiving the application to the date of the decision.
However, to avoid delay in the process, make sure to
- Use the correct version of the application form.
- Submit a complete application with all the necessary documents.
- Pay the application fee.
- Complete the required statutory declarations.
- Respond to any requests for additional information or clarification in a timely manner.
You have 28 days to turn in any missing documents. If you don’t, your application may not be accepted.
This is the final step for completing the naturalisation process for successful applicants. After your application is approved, you’ll be invited to attend an Irish citizenship ceremony (with one guest). You must attend this event and take the Oath of Allegiance or make the solemn declaration required by law unless you are a minor. You’ll get your Certificate of Naturalisation at the ceremony.
2. Irish citizenship by birth or descent
You may be eligible for Irish citizenship by birth or descent if you were born outside of Ireland and either of your grandparents or parents was an Irish citizen. You can only become a citizen through registration in the Foreign Births Register under the Department of Foreign Affairs.
The Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956, as amended, authorises the Minister to waive certain conditions if they deem it appropriate. Some examples of this might be applicable if the person is of Irish descent or has family members who are Irish citizens.
The Act allows for discretion and must not be interpreted as a policy simply because of Irish ancestry or ties. Even if the applicant fits within the precise circumstances described, there is no privilege or right to have a part or full statutory criteria waived. It is at the Minister’s power, and this discretion is rarely used only in the most compelling and exceptional circumstances.
The standard requirements
If any of your parents was an Irish citizen when you were born, then you are already an automatic Irish citizen. There is no need to go through a lengthy application process in this instance.
Other general conditions that must be met if the applicant is claiming Irish citizenship by descent are as follows:
- One of your grandparents was an Irish citizen by birth, or;
- Even if your parents were not born in Ireland (including Northern Ireland), one of them was an Irish citizen when you were born.
The Minister will only allow an application under Section 16 of the Act to move forward if it relies on Irish ties, affinity, and substantive evidence that demonstrates the applicant’s exceptional circumstances and how their application fits into those normal pathways. A relationship that extends back 2 generations and has no other tie to the country is usually deemed insufficient to justify consideration or suspend statutory residency requirements.
- Applicants seeking to benefit from the discretion granted by Section 16 of the Act must have a lawful occupancy in the State for at least three years, demonstrating a substantial and real connection with the local society.
- An Irish connection through a great-grandparent (or a grandparent if they acquired citizenship through naturalisation) would generally not be recommended if there is negligible or no reckonable residency.
- In the absence of exceptional and compelling reasons, an application appropriating an Irish connection by ‘ascent’ (i.e. based on being one of the parents of Irish citizen children) or on being the siblings of an Irish citizen will not be accepted as satisfactory to warrant or to be justified for a recommendation for the Minister waive statutory conditions.
The application process differs from applying for citizenship by naturalisation, but the general requirements and process are similar.
Visit the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade if you were born outside the country and want to acquire Irish citizenship. The first step in applying for foreign citizenship is registering your foreign birth with the Foreign Births Registry.
You must submit passport-sized photographs with your registration with the Foreign Births Registry. You’ll also need to personally sign and date your application, as well as have to arrange the signature of a witness.
Please note that anyone can not be a witness. Police officers, physicians, lawyers, and school teachers, nurses, accountants are some examples of good witnesses.
For Irish Association cases, extensive investigation is required, often including third-party involvement. These comprise originality and financial verifications (for money laundering and terrorist financing), so the processing time can vary greatly. The current processing time for an application, from receiving to the decision, is more than 30 months on average.
The following payment, as applicable, is to be made online when entering your application.
- Registration fee + Certificate fee: €270
- Postage & handling fee (Non-refundable): €8
- Total: €278
For people under 18:
- Registration fee + Certificate fee: €145
- Postage & handling fee (Non-refundable): €8
- Total: €153
Irish citizenship is a complicated process with many requirements. In addition to the general procedure, the concerned minister is empowered to waive certain statutory conditions and requirements in “exceptional cases”.
The IAS team has a wealth of experience and knowledge in processing Irish citizenship application and can guide you through the process at every step. Our team is on hand to answer any queries that you may have and offer advice on your application. Contact us (+353) 061 518 025 today for a consultation.
Last modified on December 15th, 2023 at 3:20 pm
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No, you cannot get investment-based citizenship in Ireland. The only way to obtain Irish citizenship is by descent, marriage, and naturalisation.
You can only get Irish citizenship if you have ancestors from Ireland, marry someone who is a citizen, or live in Ireland for a certain amount of time.
The processing time for an application is 23 months for naturalisation and more than 30 months on average through ancestry.
It is difficult to get Irish citizenship if you don’t have ancestors from Ireland or are married to one. The process takes a long time, and many requirements must be met.
Irish passport is ranked 5th in the world in terms of travel freedom. Irish citizens can live and work freely in any country within the European Union. In addition, they also have access to free education and healthcare in Ireland.
Yes, Ireland does allow dual citizenship. You can become a dual citizen of Ireland and another country through marriage, naturalisation, or descent.
No, you cannot get residency in Ireland by buying property. To live in Ireland, you must apply for a naturalisation citizenship permit.