Long Stay 'D' Visas Explained
Some wish to stay in the country for longer than the permitted time that is usually provided in Stamp form in their passport by an Irish immigration officer. To achieve this, the applicant will need to pass border control and then ultimately seek an Irish Residence Permit.
Alternatively, those who hope to travel to Ireland for no longer than 3 months might be better suited to a Short Term ‘C’ Category Visa, depending on the nature of the visit.
However, Irish immigration law can be quite complex when it comes to ticking all the boxes and thus residing in the State legally. There are lengthy and intricate requirements per each and every visa route that is encompassed under the Long Stay D Visa category. For this reason, it is always best practice to seek guidance from a certified and accredited legal professional.
Long Term ‘D’ Visa Application help
Here at the IAS, we are well versed in the convoluted arena of Irish immigration law. Your personally assigned lawyer will be able to guide you on which type of Long Stay ‘D’ Visa best suits your individual circumstances, whether you plan on moving to Ireland under a work transfer or whether you have an ancestry claim to join your Irish family members.
Each application is checked rigorously and approved by the Republic of Ireland’s governing immigration body which is the Department of Justice and Equality’s Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS). At the Immigration Advice Service, we do everything in our power to maximise your chances of success. We know exactly the qualifying criteria down each Long Term ‘D’ Visa pathway and can guide you every step of the way to polish your application.
Call us on (+353) 061 518 025 to begin your Long Term ‘D’ Visa application.
What are the different types of Long Stay Visas?
There are various routes that are encompassed under the Long Stay Visa umbrella, and you will have to apply separately for the visa that suits your circumstances and needs.
- The Study Visa
- The Family Member Visa – As Spouse/Civil Partner, Child or De facto Partner
- The Employment Visa – As General, Scientific Researcher or Van der Elst route
- The Minister of Religion Visa
- The Long-Stay Volunteer Visa
Each type of ‘D’ visa has its own unique series of rules and requirements that you must pass in order to successfully gain entry clearance into Ireland and to reside in the State legally. Eligibility is assessed on a case by case basis, however, applying for one of the above visas usually entails submitting documented evidence of your sponsor or endorsement as well as meeting a minimum income or savings threshold. This is to satisfy the Department of Justice and Equality’s immigration criteria. Without its pre-approval, you will not be allowed entry into Ireland.
Your IAS immigration lawyer will be able to inform you on which ‘D’ visa category best suits you and will guide you every step of the way throughout your journey to Ireland.
What are the Study Visa requirements?
To study in Ireland on a course that lasts longer than 3 months, you must meet the requirements of the Study Visa.
Not only does this entail being able to prove that you are enrolled on a course of full-time education, but you also must submit:
- Your Letter of Acceptance
- Details of your chosen course
- Evidence of any past exam results and/or qualifications
- Proof of English (or Irish) speaking ability to suit your course needs
- Proof that you are able to financially support yourself in Ireland without relying on public funds or employment
- A consent document from both parents or two legal guardians
- Proof of where you plan on living during your course
There are also rigorous rules pertaining to your finances and medical insurance which depends on your course, your chosen educational body and any funding you may be in receipt of.
How long your Study Visa lasts depends on the length of your course and which stamp the Irish immigration officer grants you upon entry. Normally, you will granted a Stamp 2 which will cover you throughout the length of your chosen course. Others may receive a Stamp 2A which is only given in the event of taking up just one semester in Ireland.
Contact IAS today to assess which Study Visa route best applies to you and your chosen course.
What are the different types of Family Member Visa routes?
At IAS, we understand the importance of joining your loved ones and watching your family grow – wherever in the world they may be. Fortunately, Ireland is especially family focussed and so it has a specific visa that you can apply for to join or settle with your existing family members in the State for a period of longer than 3 months.
Under the Family Member category, you can apply as:
That being said, this isn’t an exhaustive list: there may be other routes that better apply to your unique circumstances that your IAS immigration lawyer will suggest for you instead.
Many applicants trip over the intricate and complex requirements which differ from visa to visa. Applying for an Irish Family Visa without guidance or professional help can therefore not only be administratively burdensome but can come with a heightened risk of a negative outcome.
By entrusting the IAS with your case, you can rest assured that your application will be filled to the highest standard and will even come with a Letter of Representation which highlights your merits to ratify the Republic of Ireland Embassy’s stringent assessments.
How much does a Visa to Ireland cost?
Each and every visa category and sub-route within that category has its own costs. Many are further accompanied by additional, hidden fees such as registration for your compulsory Irish Residence Permit after 90 days (€300) and any private medical insurance you take out which must be included in your visa application.
Others such as students must have €7,000 in savings in order to qualify for a Study Visa whereas those seeking an Employment Permit can see costs rise to as high as €1,500. Fees are usually higher across the visa spectrum if you intend on bringing a dependent with you, including children or adult dependents too.
However, the general rules are as follows:
- A single journey visa costs €60 and will allow you to enter the State for a maximum of 90 days.
- A multi-journey visa costs €100 and will allow you to enter Ireland multiple time for a maximum of five years.
- A transit visa costs €25.
All applications submitted to the Embassy in Ireland are non-refundable. In certain circumstances, you may be able to receive your Employment Permit fee back from The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation if your visa application is refused.
For the avoidance of doubt, it is best to rely on an immigration professional with your application as doing so will dilute the risk of receiving a rejection letter and the possibility of losing your money.
What is the Minister of Religion Visa?
Ireland is a popular hub for practising faith and worship and has become home to many religious communities. The State is always ready to welcome you in its ranks if you can pass the criteria of the Minister of Religion Visa.
To achieve this and join a faith community or a religious body in the State, you must already be qualified, ordained or a professional religious person. You may be permitted to remain in Ireland under the Long Stay ‘D’ Category for as long as 3 years but no less than 3 months. To work as a religious volunteer for 90 days or less, you may need a Volunteer Visa instead.
A Minister of Religion Visa allows you to:
- Conduct spatial worship and/or ceremonies
- Provide pastoral care via preaching
- Conduct religious classes and teachings, including supervising prayer meetings
- Provide spiritual leadership
- Conduct pastoral visitation
- Provide administrative support to a religious institution, order or church
- Be a member of a religious community whose members take public vows of poverty, chastity and obedience
To qualify, an eligible religious organisation or faith community must sponsor you to come and work in Ireland and you must also have had 3 years prior experience in the role. There is an additional process under which you will be vetted by An Garda Síochána (the Republic of Ireland’s police force) in order to work with children and other vulnerable people.
Call us today on (+353) 061 518 025 to see how we can help you achieve your dream of becoming a Minister of Religion in the Republic of Ireland.
How do I Volunteer for longer than 3 months in Ireland?
Having permission to volunteer in Ireland via the Long-Term route allows you to stay in the State for at least 3 months and up to 2 years with an eligible organisation.
Under a Volunteer Visa, you will be able to work in:
- Arts, heritage and culture
- Youth services
- Religious and faith services
- Health support services
- Sport and physical recreation
- Welfare and work for the community good
Your volunteer work can be sponsored by a non-governmental agency or a not-for-profit, charitable body that is listed on the Charities Regulator’s Public Register of Charities. You can also be invited by a sports organisation that is recognised by Sports Ireland.
However, there is a set of supporting documents that you must submit to accompany your visa application. This includes presenting proof of sponsorship, bank statements covering the past six months from yourself, bank statements in the same time frame from your sponsor as well as evidence of any qualifications and/or past work and volunteer experience.
Obtaining a Volunteer Visa to Ireland, although appears seemingly straightforward, often trips genuine applicants up. People are often penalised for submitting too much supporting evidence as well as too little, leaving many with disappointing visa refusals and putting them out of pocket. To save yourself the stress, hassle and costs, it is vital you seek immigration advice on your application.
At the Immigration Advice Service, we can help you secure your Volunteer Visa by offering advice tailored to your circumstances. He or she is able to walk you through from start to finish and can even complete your application for you to increase your chances of obtaining a positive result.
What are the different types of Employment Visas?
Obtaining a work visa as a foreign national to come and work in Ireland can be quite a laborious and complex process. This is because, in order to qualify for a long-term Employment Visa, you must first obtain an employment permit from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (DJEI) – and there are nine to choose from.
These permits are:
- The General Employment Permit
- The Critical Skills Employment Permit
- The Dependent/Partner/Spouse Employment Permit
- Reactivation Employment Permit
- Contract for Services and Employment Permit
- Intra-Company Transfer Employment Permit
- Exchange Agreement Employment Permit
- Internship Employment Visa
- Sports and Cultural Employment Permit
In addition, there is also the Employment (Scientific Researcher) Visa, the Employment (Van der Elst) Visa, the Immigrant Investor Programme and the Start-up Entrepreneur Programme.
For those looking to find work for 3 months or less in Ireland, you may need a Short-Term C Visa which comes with its own permit types and requirements.
What are the Employment Visa requirements?
Obtaining a permit may be the hard part of seeking an Employment Visa, however, it is important to know the many intricate requirements and criteria.
For example, to gain an Employment Visa, you may need to earn €30,000 or more to qualify for a general permit. However, if you are looking into a job that requires critical skills, you will need to earn €60,000. In the event of your job being listed on the Critical Skills Occupation List, the income requirement will again drop to the €30,000 mark.
The general requirements to be successful for this visa means you will have to submit:
- Evidence of your employment contract
- A letter from your employer in Ireland confirming your job and your salary
- Evidence of any qualifications and past work experience
- A recent bank statement detailing the last six months
At IAS, our highly dedicated team of immigration lawyers are able to guide you through every step of this convoluted process. You can seek an Advice Session to talk you through the requirements of your specific permit or a full Application Package in which your IAS immigration lawyer in Ireland will fulfil your application on your behalf to the highest standard.
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Visa refusals can be quite common for those who attempt to apply without seeking legal guidance first. Unfortunately, a visa refusal will mean that you have no legal right to enter Ireland. This means you will be turned away by an immigration officer when you arrive at border control at the airport or in any Irish ports.
However, the Immigration Advice Service is able to pick up your case at any point and help you lodge an appeal against the decision via IAS’ Appeal Package service. If you choose to have an advice session or application session with IAS but your visa is still refused, IAS’ appeal service is free of charge.
Your IAS lawyer will be able to identify the problems with your initial application and will rectify the mistakes for you.
However, you need to act fast if you want to successfully have your visa refusal overturned: you have only 2 months to submit an appeal and the process can be quite lengthy and time-consuming.
In most instances, you should be waiting for around 8 weeks to receive a final verdict on your Long-Term ‘D’ Visa application. This is because it has to be sent and approved by numerous bodies and offices such as the Irish Visa Office, Embassy or Consulate.
Typically, Family Visas tend to take longer due to the complexity of this visa and its vast criteria that must be checked and verified. In most circumstances, it can take as long as 6 months to have an outcome on your Long-Term Spouse, Partner or other Family Member Visa application.
In severe circumstances, it can take 12 months or more to finally hear a result. Waiting times are especially exacerbated if the Irish immigration authorities require additional documents or evidence from you. It is therefore necessary to seek guidance on your application if you wish for a streamlined process in a faster turnaround.
The Immigration Advice Service offers a plethora of packages for you to choose from. Each service can be tailored to meet your unique circumstances.
By entrusting the IAS with your Irish Visa application, your immigration lawyer will assess whether you meet the requirements and will even fill your application to the highest standard on your behalf if you opt for IAS’ comprehensive Application Package service.
You may decide to opt for an Advice Session first. In this face-to-face or over the phone meeting, your immigration specialist will talk you through your circumstances, whether you meet the eligibility requirements and which documents you need to submit as evidence.
If your immigration query is urgent and you need to receive entry clearance and your visa into Ireland before a deadline, such as attending a wedding or graduation, IAS offers a Fast-Track Application Package. This will make your application a top priority, and will ensure that your application is watertight and fulfilled to an exceptionally high standard.
Others, however, prefer to have a simple Document Check. In this service, your IAS immigration lawyer in Ireland will assess your evidential proof that accompanies your visa application for you and will tell you if you need to submit anything else.
Call us today on (+353) 061 518 025 to see how we can help you. Our client care team are here to help you and match you with an accredited immigration professional based on your circumstances. You may also choose to meet your lawyer face-to-face, over the phone or via Skype.