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Spouse/Civil Partner Visa Ireland

The Ireland Spouse/Civil Partner Visa allows non-Irish nationals to join their partner in Ireland.

One of our professional, highly qualified immigration consultants at the Immigration Advice Service can assist with any enquiries you may have regarding how to join your spouse/civil partner.

Call us on (+353) 061 518 025 to speak to one of our immigration experts.

We are here to help you in person, via telephone or online.

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    Joining your spouse/civil partner who is residing in Ireland

    If you wish to join your spouse/civil partner who is an Irish citizen or who is lawfully resident in Ireland and you wish to stay for longer than three months, you may be eligible to do so under Ireland’s Family Reunification scheme.

    The individual who is residing in the State – your spouse/civil partner – will be considered your ‘sponsor’ throughout the entire immigration process.

    The reason for your spouse/civil partner being considered your ‘sponsor’ is that the application is viewed as a joint undertaking based on the shared wish that the applicant be allowed to live in Ireland.

    The term ‘sponsor’ also represents that your spouse/civil partner will take responsibility for you throughout the duration of your stay in Ireland.

    The ability to join your spouse/civil partner residing in Ireland is dependent on many factors, including:

    • Your spouse/civil partner’s nationality (whether they are an Irish/EU/non-EEA national)
    • The immigration permission they have been granted whilst residing in Ireland (whether they are allowed to bring family members such as their spouse/civil partner to reside in Ireland with them depends upon the immigration stamp they have been given)
    • If your spouse/civil partner is a recognised refugee in Ireland
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    Requirements for non-EEA nationals joining their spouse/civil partner in Ireland?

    Whilst each case will demand unique requirements depending on your personal circumstances, your partner’s circumstances and their own immigration permission, there are some primary requirements which apply to all non-EEA nationals hoping to join their spouse/civil partner in Ireland.

    This includes:

    • Both you and your spouse/civil partner must commit to living together permanently as husband and wife or civil partners as soon as circumstances permit
    • Spouses must be a minimum of 18 years old
    • All applicants and their spouse/civil partner, regardless of their nationality, must provide evidence of the claimed relationship to prove that the relationship is genuine
    • The marriage certificate/civil partnership certificate must be capable of recognition under Irish law
    • It is not sufficient for a relationship to have developed solely over the internet/via telephone etc., a relationship must include a number of face-to-face meetings

    Do I need to apply for a visa to join my spouse/civil partner in Ireland?

    If you are from a non-EEA visa required country, it is essential that you apply for a long stay (join family) visa.

    One of IAS’ dedicated, friendly and OISC-accredited immigration consultants in Ireland can provide high quality legal assistance with your spouse/civil partner visa application.

    This application can be both lengthy and complex, with a significant amount of supporting documentation required.

    Currently, there is no form of preclearance required for those non-EEA nationals who are from non-visa required countries.

    At the moment, these individuals who wish to join their spouse/civil partner can travel to Ireland without having to apply for a visa to gain entry to the State.

    However, non-EEA nationals from both visa required and non-visa required countries must provide sufficient supporting documentation upon arrival to Ireland.

    This must be presented to an immigration officer at the border. Our team of experts can provide the same advice as an immigration lawyer.

    Required documents for the Irish Spouse visa

    You will have to provide a range of supporting documentation with your Spouse visa application. These include the following:

    • Completed application form, signed and dated by yourself and your Irish spouse/partner
    • Your original marriage/civil partnership certificate
    • Your and your Irish spouse’s passport
    • Your birth certificate
    • Divorce papers (if applicable)
    • Bank statements from the past 12 months (both from yourself and your spouse/partner)
    • Proof of private medical insurance (for yourself only)
    • Proof that your Irish spouse/partner has earned at least €40,000 in the past 3 years, such as P60s, employment detail summaries, P21 revenue commissioner statements, financial statements or payslips
    • Proof of joint accommodation, such as rent books, tenancy agreements or mortgage payments
    • Evidence of a shared address between you and your spouse, such as utility bills, letters from children’s schools, etc

    Note that you must include photocopies of all of your documents in addition to the originals.

    Is my spouse/civil partner eligible to sponsor my application?

    For your spouse/civil partner to be eligible as your sponsor, they must fall under one of the following categories of individuals residing in Ireland:

    • An Irish citizen residing or intending to reside in Ireland
    • A lawfully resident foreign national who is an Employment Permit Holder in Ireland
    • A lawfully resident foreign national with Stamp 4 immigration permission (including long term residents)
    • A lawfully resident foreign national with an immigration Stamp 5 (indicating that their residence is without condition as to time)
    • A Researcher under a Hosting Agreement (including those who hold a Critical Skills Employment Permit)
    • A PhD student studying for a doctorate accredited in Ireland
    • A Minister of Religion with Stamp 3 immigration permissions

    Unfortunately, even if your spouse/civil partner is eligible to make an application as your sponsor, this does not indicate or assume a successful outcome of the application.

    An IAS immigration law specialist can strengthen your chances of success by providing a detailed Letter of Representation alongside both your own application and the application of your sponsor. For professional legal assistance with your long stay (join family) visa application, contact IAS on  (+353) 061 518 025.

    Get in touch with our expert immigration consultants for advice on your Spouse/Civil Partner Visa. Contact us

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      How can I join my spouse/civil partner who is an Irish citizen residing in Ireland?

      Marrying or entering a civil partnership with an Irish citizen does not grant you automatic residency rights in Ireland. If you are a non-EEA national, you are required to apply for permission to remain in the State.

      As explained above, non-EEA nationals who are from visa required countries and are married/in a civil partnership with an Irish national must apply for a long stay (join family) visa prior to travelling to Ireland.

      One key condition is that your sponsor (your Irish spouse/civil partner) must not have relied predominantly on benefits from the Irish State for a continuous period of 2 years immediately prior to the application.

      Additionally, your Irish spouse/civil partner must have earned, over the three years prior to application, a cumulative gross income over and above any State benefits of no less than €40,000.

      All non-EEA nationals – visa required or not – must register for permission to remain in Ireland for over 90 days (3 months).

      You may be granted right to enter the State, however only once you have registered with immigration and have gained permission to remain are you entitled to reside in Ireland with your spouse/civil partner for longer than 3 months.

      Once you have entered the State, both you and your Irish spouse/civil partner must visit your local Garda National Immigration Bureau Registration office with the following:

      • Your original marriage/civil partnership certificate
      • Your original passport
      • Your Irish spouse’s/civil partner’s original passport
      • Evidence of your joint address

      How can I join my non-EEA spouse/civil partner residing in Ireland?

      If you are a non-EEA national and would like to join your spouse/civil partner who is also a non-EEA national currently residing in Ireland, your ability to do so depends largely on the immigration status of your partner.

      In order for your spouse/civil partner to sponsor you and to be eligible for immediate family reunification, they must be residing in Ireland as one of the following:

      • Critical Skills Employment Permit holders
      • Investors/Entrepreneurs
      • Business Permission holders
      • Researchers
      • INIS Approved Scholarship programme students
      • Intra Corporate Transferees
      • PhD Students (subject to conditions)
      • Full time non-locum doctors

      Or, to be eligible to sponsor your application for family reunification after 12 months, your partner may be:

      • A non Critical Skills Employment Permit holder
      • A Stamp 4 holder who is not covered by more favourable arrangements
      • A Minister of Religion

      Any other non-EEA national residing in Ireland will not be eligible to sponsor your application for family reunification.

      The reason for this is, if your spouse/civil partner falls within one of the above categories, this infers a certain desired level of income earnings.

      Therefore, their immigration status correlates with their ability to support you and your application to join them.

      How can I join my spouse/civil partner who is an EU national in Ireland?

      If you are a non-EEA national and wish to join your spouse/civil partner who is an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen residing in Ireland, you must apply for a ‘Residence Card of a Family Member of a Union Citizen’.

      This is also known as an ‘EU Treaty Rights’ application since your spouse/civil partner must use their EU Treaty Rights to sponsor your application.

      The application process involves the submitting of several forms complete with supporting documentation.

      It can take up to 12 months to process.

      There are two types of residence card which may be applied for, however those who are joining their spouse/civil partner must apply for the residence card ‘for a qualifying family member of a Union citizen’.

      An IAS immigration consultant can provide you with practical assistance throughout this application process.

      After submitting your application for this residence card, you will be sent a letter which may give you temporary permission to reside in Ireland until a decision on your application has been reached.

      If you are granted permission, you must then register to extend your permission in order to stay over 90 days.

      How to apply for the Irish Spouse visa

      The application for the Irish Spouse visa must be made by post.

      You must first visit the official Irish government website and download the Spouse/Civil Partner of an Irish National application form. You must then print it out and complete it in full, before packing it securely with your supporting documents and sending it by registered post to the following address:

      Spouse of Irish National Section
      Unit C – Domestic Residence and Permissions Division
      Immigration Service Delivery
      Department of Justice
      13-14 Burgh Quay
      Dublin 2, DO2 XK70

      Ireland Spouse visa processing time

      It may take up to 12 months or even more for your Irish Spouse visa to be processed.

      Up-to-date processing times can be found on the Irish Immigration Service Delivery website on their visa decisions page. Here, you will be able to to find a table with each visa category and the most recent date of applications received that the ISD are currently processing.

      As of the time of writing, the last update to the table was 7 May 2024, and the most recent applications for the Spouse of an Irish national visa that were being processed at that time was from 16 June 2023.

      Be aware that wait times may vary based on the time of year, how busy the ISD are, and how complex your case is.

      Spouse visa application cost

      There is no official fee or cost associated with the Irish Spouse visa.

      This is because certain family members of Irish citizens are exempt from paying fees when applying to join their Irish family member in Ireland.

      Other exempt family members include widows/widowers, children under 18 and adopted children under 18.

      Note that you may still have to pay additional fees for your application, such as if you need to have documents translated.

      Do you require legal assistance with a Spouse/Civil Partner visa application? Contact Us

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                  Frequently Asked Questions

                  Once you have registered with immigration authorities for residency permission in Ireland, you will be given an immigration stamp to indicate the conditions of your stay.

                  Those who are granted permission to reside in Ireland with their spouse/civil partner who is an Irish citizen will be given a Stamp 4 and may be entitled to stay in the State for an initial period of 36 months.

                  A Stamp 4 allows you to reside and work in Ireland without the need to acquire an Employment Permit. It will also detail the exact length of time that you are permitted to reside in the State.

                  Stamp 4 is also reckonable as residence when applying for citizenship by naturalisation. This means that any time spent on this immigration permission will be counted towards the necessary time required for Irish citizenship.

                  If your spouse/civil partner is a non-EEA national residing in Ireland, your immigration permission will be subject to employment permit requirements as set out by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.

                  If you wish to extend your stay in Ireland, you may be eligible to renew your immigration. This must be done before your current permission expires.

                  An IAS immigration consultant can help with your extension/renewal.

                  Contact us on (+353) 061 518 025.

                  If you separate with your spouse/civil partner who sponsored your application to reside in Ireland, you must notify your local Garda National Immigration Bureau Registration Officer within 7 days of this change of circumstances.

                  You are also required to write to the Spouse of Irish National Unit at least 3 months prior to the expiry of your current immigration permission and must detail the change of circumstances surrounding your separation.

                  A general requirement for the retention of your immigration status in the event of a divorce/separation is that you must have been married/in a civil partnership for at least 3 years before the separation with at least the last 2 years spent residing in Ireland.

                  The sponsor (your spouse/civil partner) cannot be joined by a further spouse or partner until a minimum of 7 years have elapsed from the date of the first spousal permission.

                  Your Irish spouse or partner needs to have earned €40,000 in the last 3 years in order to be eligible to sponsor you.

                  How long it takes to get a Spouse visa for Ireland can vary based on a number of factors such as the time of year and complexity of cases presented.

                  However, you can expect to wait around 6-12 months for a decision on your case.

                  The ISD website regularly posts updates for visa wait times for the Dublin visa office.

                  At IAS, we can help with every step of your Spouse/Civil Partner application for residency in Ireland.

                  Whether you need help with a Long Stay (Join Family) Visa, help with immigration registration or renewal, require advice regarding your eligibility, or perhaps need assistance with going to the right consultant for appealing a decision, our immigration experts in Ireland are able to help.

                  Our team of competent specialists provide the same expertise as an immigration lawyer.

                  Take a look at our comprehensive packages to consider which best suits your needs; our advice package, application package and document check package are sure to be invaluable throughout your immigration journey.

                  We provide advice sessions in person, via Skype or telephone.

                  To get in touch with one of our immigration specialists, please call (+353) 061 518 025.

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