Immigration Advice Service
+353 061 518 025 (local rate)

Mon - Sun, 8.30 am - 8 pm

Menu

We are Ireland's leading immigration specialists
Accredited Irish immigration lawyers
We've had over 5000 applications approved
Get the correct advice from qualified immigration experts
4.7 rating 414 reviews
Dozens of Migrants’ Passports Lost or Misplaced by Irish Government

Dozens of Migrants’ Passports Lost or Misplaced by Irish Government

The Irish government has lost or misplaced dozens of passports belonging to migrants according to the Immigrant Council of Ireland.

The Immigration Advice Service is continuing to provide invaluable support and guidance to those who require help with any immigration matter, including immigration permit renewals.

Contact our client care team today on (+353) 061 518 025 to find out how we can assist you.

Request a call back from our immigration experts

Fill out the form

Dozens of Migrants’ Passports Lost or Misplaced by Irish Government

The Irish government has lost or misplaced dozens of passports belonging to migrants according to the Immigrant Council of Ireland.

Migrants have even resorted to setting up a WhatsApp group to try to reunite people with their lost documents.

Valeria Aquino, an immigration officer with the Immigrant Council of Ireland, explained that in September, the organisation discovered at least ten cases of people either having their passports lost, or receiving passports in the post which did not belong to them.

As part of the process of immigration permission renewal, migrants are required to post their passport to Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Services (INIS). Ms Aquino explained that she discovered that a WhatsApp group had been created after a growing number of migrants received passports which did not belong to them.

Ms Aquino said:

“The group is very active. I’m aware of maybe 30 cases so far. By itself, misplacing someone’s passport is a huge GDPR breach but there is also the issue of a passport going to someone with bad intentions,”

She went on to say:

“Passports are sold on the dark web, and with more services going online during Covid-19 they could be used to apply for a loan.”

Ms Aquno said that she was aware of cases where people had to pay to replace a passport that had been lost. Also, a number of migrants struggled to get a response from the Department of Justice after they complained about their missing documents.

In some cases, migrants have been given tracking numbers which either don’t work or claim that their passport has been delivered already.

The Problems of Not Having a Passport

If a migrant does not have a passport, it can cause significant problems for them in Ireland. They will not be able to open a bank account for the purposes of a new job, which could potentially lead to more people claiming social welfare.

Ms Aqunio said:

“It’s a domino effect. A fail in the immigration system can increase the burden on the social welfare system.”

Also, if a migrant does not have a passport, this could lead to problems with their immigration permission in Ireland both short-term and long-term.

In response, the Department of Justice said it was aware of a number of cases where passports “have inadvertently been sent to the wrong address” after people had sent their passports to renew their immigration permission.

The Department stated that it was aware of only a “very small number” of incidents in the “low single digits”.

A spokesman for the Department said:

“The Department always strives to rectify any errors that may occur as quickly as possible. We also comply fully with our GDPR reporting obligations.”

Problems with Registration

Over the past few months, a new online immigration registration process has been rolled out. Migrants have been posting their passports to INIS as part of this process.

There was a backlog in the processing of applications which was caused by the office being closed for four months during the first lockdown. INIS is now processing around 12,000 applications, with 800 being sent each week.

The Department said “it recognises the difficulties that delays may cause for applicants”.

Immigration Advice in Ireland

If you want to renew your immigration permission in Ireland, the Immigration Advice Service can help.

Our experienced immigration lawyers in Ireland deal in all areas of Irish immigration law and can help you to secure your status in the State.

For more information, please call us now on (+353) 061 518 025.

 

Passport Ireland

Valeria Aquino, an immigration officer with the Immigrant Council of Ireland, said she was aware of “maybe 30 cases” of migrants’ passports being lost and/or migrants receiving the wrong passport.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Department of Justice and Equality Building

The Department of Justice said it was aware of only a “very small number” of cases.  [Image credit: The Journal]