Marriage Visa Application
The Marriage Visa is a type of Short Stay ‘C’ visa available to the partner of an Irish citizen or resident who wishes to marry their partner in Ireland.
This visa can only be applied for after both partners have received acknowledgement from the Registrar confirming the date of receipt of notification of the intention to marry/enter into a civil partnership in Ireland.
Do I need to apply for an Irish Marriage Visa?
If you are a citizen of Switzerland or a country in the European Economic Area, you will not need to apply for a marriage visa.
However, if you are a citizen of a country which is not a non-visa required country, you must apply for a marriage visa if you intend to marry in Ireland.
You need to inform the Registrar of Civil Marriages in Ireland that you wish to marry before you begin the process of the marriage visa application.
Specifically, you need to have acknowledgement from the Registrar indicating the date you officially notified the Registrar of your intention to marry in Ireland.
It is important to note that your application to the Registrar must be done a minimum of three months before you intend to get married in Ireland.
What is the application process for a marriage visa?
Once you have received acknowledgement from the Registrar, you can begin the marriage visa application process.
The application process is as follows:
- Complete an online application
- Pay the application fee
- Gather all required documents together
- Send the application to the visa application office
After you have completed the online application, an application summary sheet will be displayed.
The application summary sheet is a crucial document which you need to print out. On it you will find your Visa Application Tracking Number, which can be used to track the status of your visa application, as well as the address of the office which you need to send your marriage visa application to.
Am I eligible for the marriage visa?
In order to be eligible for a marriage visa, there are a few fundamental conditions which must be met:
- You must have a passport which is valid for at least six months after your proposed leave date from Ireland
- You are able to support yourself financially during your time in Ireland
- You can provide sufficient evidence of the relationship between you and your partner
Which documents do I need to include in a marriage visa application?
Whilst the specific required documents may differ somewhat depending on your individual circumstances, there are a number of documents which will definitely need to be included in any marriage visa application.
The required information/documents are:
- Your passport
- Signed and dated application summary sheet
- A signed letter of application showing full details of your reasons for travelling to Ireland, how long you intend to stay for, who you plan to stay with and how you will fund the trip. You will also need to confirm your commitment to the conditions of the visa and that you won’t become a burden on the State
- Two colour passport-sized photographs with your Visa Application Tracking Number and name on the back of each
- Details of your accommodation plans
- Financial information and evidence
- Evidence of your relationship history and intention to marry
- Documents which show your obligation to return to your home country
All the information and documents which you provide need to be in their original form. Photocopies will almost certainly not be accepted.
Also, any documents which are not in Irish or English must be fully translated by an official, accredited translator.
Once you have all the relevant documents together, you will need to send them, along with your application summary sheet, to the visa application office stated on the summary sheet.
It can be difficult to establish the exact documents which you need to include in a marriage visa application. Here at the Immigration Advice Service, we have helped countless couples tie the knot in Ireland utilising our unrivalled Irish immigration law expertise.
Call us now on (+353) 061 518 025 to see how we can help make your marriage in Ireland a reality.
Which documents do I need to provide to prove my relationship?
You need to provide certain information which proves the relationship between you and your partner. For instance, you could provide evidence showing your prospective spouse/civil partner has travelled to your country of residence to visit you a number of times. Also, correspondence can be used as demonstrable evidence.
Do note that you must have met face-to-face with your partner on a number of occasions to be considered for the marriage visa. If the relationship was formed solely over the internet or through text messages, your application will not be considered.
If either yourself or your partner were previously married or in a civil partnership, you must provide:
- Marriage/civil partnership certificate
- Divorce/dissolution of civil partnership certificate
As well as the evidence of the relationship, you will need to provide evidence of your intention to marry/enter into a civil partnership.
You must provide one of the following:
- Acknowledgement from the Registrar which confirms the date of the receipt of notification of your intention to marry in Ireland
- Marriage Registration Form
- Civil Partnership Registration Form
What financial information do I need to include?
A key component of the marriage visa application is financial evidence. Essentially, Irish immigration officials want you to provide evidence that you can fund your expenses whilst you are in Ireland (whether through your own finances, or through the finances of someone else).
You will need to include an up-to-date bank statement, showing money going out and coming into your account over the past six months. (This rule applies regardless of whether you are funding your expenses or if they are being funded by a third party).
If someone else is funding your expenses in Ireland, you will need to be able to show how you know this person.
Also, keep the following guidelines in mind:
- Your name, address, account number and type of account must be visible on statements
- Bank statements must be on official headed paper
- If sending a bank statement from a savings or deposit account, you need to include a letter from the bank stating how much you can withdraw from the account
How can I prove my obligation to return to my home country?
With any short stay ‘C’ visa application, you need to provide evidence demonstrating strong family, social or economic ties to your home country.
This information is required in order to satisfy Irish immigration that you will leave Ireland within the 90-day period of the Marriage Visa.
If you are employed, you will need to provide the following information:
- Your three most recent payslips
- A letter from your employer indicating how long you have been employed at the company, the dates which you were absent from the company and the proposed date of your return to work
If you are a student, you will need to provide a letter from your college which states:
- The course you are studying
- How many years you have been a student at the college for
- The number of years/terms you have remaining at the college
Are there any rules regarding translated documents?
Any translated documents need to adhere to the following rules:
- Date of the translation
- The translator’s full name and signature
- Confirmation from the accredited translator that the documents are an accurate translation of the document
- The translator’s contact details
What is the fee for a marriage visa application?
At the time of writing, the fees are:
- €60 for a single-journey visa
- €100 for a multiple-journey visa
When will my marriage visa application be processed?
Processing times vary by country, and there is no definitive turnaround time for marriage visa applications. Also, during busy periods, it will take longer for your application to be processed.
The Department of Justice & Equality officially states that all marriage visa applications will be processed within eight weeks from the date the application office receives your application.
There will be delays in the processing of your application if you provide any incorrect documents, or documents which do not adhere to the stipulated guidelines.
If your visa application is accepted, you will be granted with the marriage visa and permission to travel to Ireland. If your visa application is rejected, you will receive a letter which sets out the reasons for the refusal.
After your visa application has been processed, your passport and any birth/death certificates will be returned to you. You can also request in your visa application for other documents to be returned to you.
Your documents can be returned to your home address, or to an Irish embassy or consulate.
What should I do when I arrive in Ireland?
When you arrive in Ireland, you need to report to Irish border control. As we alluded to, even if your marriage visa application is accepted, you are not guaranteed entry into Ireland.
You will need to show your passport, visa and acknowledgement from the Registrar of Civil Marriages to immigration officials. Also, it is likely that you will be asked to provide other important documentary evidence. Therefore, you ought to bring photocopies of the important documents which formed your marriage visa application.
Border control will consider your documents and information and if they are satisfied, you will be granted with official permission to enter. Unfortunately, if immigration officials have any suspicions with your application or the information you provide, you could be refused entry into Ireland.
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The marriage visa is a short stay ‘C’ visa and, as a result, you cannot stay in Ireland for longer than 90 days under it.
You will need to Leave Ireland and apply for the long stay ‘D’ Join Family Member Visa If you would like to settle in Ireland with your spouse/civil partner. This rule applies whether your partner is an Irish citizen or not.
All potential applicants for the join family member visa must have received official preclearance before they apply for the visa.
You will need to apply for permission to remain at an official immigration authority if you are granted entry into Ireland. If accepted, your passport will be stamped, and that stamp will indicate the terms of your residency in Ireland.
You are not permitted to enter Northern Ireland or other countries of the United Kingdom with an Irish visa. If you are a non-EEA national, you will need to apply for a type of UK visa to enter into any part of the United Kingdom.
Here at the IAS, we have highly experienced immigration lawyers working in both Ireland and the United Kingdom. We can provide comprehensive advice to those would like to visit Northern Ireland and other countries in the UK.
Call us now on (+353) 061 518 025 to see how we can help you.
If you have lived lawfully in Ireland for a certain period of time, you can become an Irish citizen through the route of being the spouse/civil partner of an Irish citizen.
Do note that time spent in Ireland under the marriage visa will not usually be counted as reckonable residence towards Irish citizenship.
Typically, you will need to meet the following conditions:
- You must have been in a relationship with the Irish citizen for at least three years
- You must have lived in Ireland for a period of 1 year of continuous reckonable residence immediately prior to the citizenship application, and for a total of three of the five years immediately prior to the application
- You must be able to demonstrate good character and intend to continue living in Ireland for the foreseeable future