How to get sponsorship to work in Ireland
To get sponsorship to work in Ireland, you should apply for a role with an organisation that offers sponsorship to non-EEA nationals. When you have a formal job offer, you can apply for an employment permit. Next, you can apply for your work visa and if this is approved, you may come to Ireland to work.
The first point to note is that not everyone will need sponsorship to come and work in Ireland. If you are a citizen of the UK or an EU country, you will be able to work in the UK without needing to apply for sponsorship.
Those who may need sponsorship include people from non-EEA countries (outside the UK, EU, and Switzerland). Individuals who wish to come to Ireland will need to apply for an employment permit.
There are nine different employment permit types in Ireland. Some of the most popular routes include the Critical Skills Employment Permit, the General Employment Permit, and Dependent Partner Employment Permits.
The full list of employment permits in Ireland include:
Critical Skills Employment, Dependent/Partner/Spouse Employment, Intra-Company Transfer Employment, General Employment, Contract for Services Employment, Reactivation Employment, Internship Employment, Sport and Cultural Employment, and the Exchange Agreement Employment
It is recommended to apply for the category that is most appropriate to your personal circumstances to maximise your chances of a successful application. You should be aware that the employment visa requirements vary widely according to the category.
Immigration permission to work in Ireland
Below are two of the most common routes to get sponsorship for work.
Critical Skills Employment Permit
The Critical Skills Employment Permit visa category has been designed for highly skilled candidates who wish to come to Ireland to work in key roles identified as being in short supply in the Irish job market.
Some of the roles within this category include IT professionals, engineers, scientists, health professionals, researchers, and statisticians.
Because there is a skills shortage, employers are not required to undertake a Labour Market Needs Test for these roles.
Another benefit of this permit is that it allows for relatively straightforward family reunification for dependent family members. Eligible family members will then be allowed to work.
General Employment Visa
The General Employment Visa has been designed for all occupations not on the critical skills occupation list or the ineligible occupations list.
In most cases, the role must pay a salary of at least €30,000, except in some circumstances. Employers must be registered with the appropriate Revenue Commissioner and Companies Registration Office.
In most cases, before sponsoring a non-EEA individual, employers will need to conduct a Labour Market Needs Test to ensure that the job cannot be offered to existing candidates already in Ireland.
As well as this, the individual applying for the visa must successfully demonstrate that they possess the relevant qualifications, skills and experience level required for the role.
How can I get immigration stamps to work in Ireland?
If you intend to come to Ireland for work purposes and you are from outside the EU or UK, you will be required to apply for the relevant immigration permission (also known as immigration stamps placed in your passport).
The visa system is divided into a number of different stamps that relate to different conditions of stay.
Stamp 4 permissions
This stamp is one of the most popular immigration permissions. Many foreign nationals apply for Stamp 4 permission as it counts towards reckonable time spent in the country if the applicant wishes to apply for Irish citizenship.
Further, the Stamp 4 holder does not need to apply for an employment permit in order to work in Ireland.
The holder is allowed to work for an organisation, be self-employed, set up a business, or study on a course.
To obtain a Stamp 4 permission one of the following should apply to your case:
- You are married to or in a civil partnership with an Irish citizen
- You are an unmarried (de facto) partner of an Irish citizen
- You have a child who is an Irish citizen
- You hold refugee or subsidiary protection status
- You qualify for family reunification with a person granted refugee or subsidiary protection status
- You have been granted humanitarian leave to remain
- You have successfully applied for the Immigrant Investor Programme
- You have successfully applied for the Start-Up Entrepreneur Programme
- You have held a Critical Skills Employment Permit for at least 21 months
- You have held a General Employment Permit for at least five years
Other stamps to work in Ireland
If you are ineligible to apply for a Stamp 4 permission based on your personal circumstances, you may still be able to apply for other stamps.
If you are in any doubt, it is recommended to consult with a qualified immigration solicitor who can advise you on the best approach for your situation.
Some of the following permissions may apply to your circumstances:
Stamp 1: Issued to individuals who intend to travel to Ireland on a temporary basis and who have been granted permission to work or operate a business, or alternatively, if you have been granted Working Holiday Authorisation
Stamp 1G: Allows individuals who have graduated from a degree course at Level 8 or above on the National Framework for Qualifications. Allows holders to work under some limited conditions (e.g., maximum 40 hours per week)
Stamp 2: Allows students on some eligible courses to work under some limited conditions
How to apply for an employment visa in Ireland
If you are looking for a sponsorship to work in Ireland, you will first need to obtain a formal job offer from an eligible organisation.
Following this, you should use the Employment Permits Online System (EPOS) application page to apply for your permit.
You will be required to provide the following information:
- Passport details
- Details of the employer or sponsor organisation
- Further details about the applicant
- Details related to the employment
- Details related to remuneration
- Other relevant details
You will be required to submit the required documents and pay the relevant application fee. The application for the employment permit should be submitted at least 12 weeks in advance of the proposed employment start date.
As well as this, you should aim to complete the online application within 28 days or it will be deleted from the EPOS system.
How can IAS help?
As a leading immigration law firm with offices across Ireland and the UK, you can be confident in trusting us with your case.
Some of the services we provide include:
- Checking your immigration status and eligibility criteria
- Advising whether you meet the qualification criteria for a working visa
- Making recommendations on the most appropriate route based on your circumstances
- Check that your documents are appropriate for the application
- Supporting you in preparing your visa application to the highest standard
- Liaising with the Department of Justice throughout the application process
Some of the packages we offer include the following:
Call us now on (+353) 061 518 025 to find out more about how we can assist you with seeking sponsorship for work purposes in Ireland.
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