Global Alerts

Ireland – Spouse or Partner of Critical Skills Employment Permit Holder Can Work Without Employment Permit

Effective March 6, 2019, the spouses and de facto partners of Critical Skills Employment Permit (CSEP) holders can access the Irish labour market without first obtaining an Employment Permit.

In addition, on April 1, 2019 a new preclearance policy will be introduced for the non-EEA de facto partners of CSEP holders.

What has changed?

Previously, the Irish Naturalization and Immigration Service (INIS) granted spouses and de facto partners of CSEP holders permission to reside in Ireland on Stamp 3 conditions. Where they wanted to access the labor market, they needed to apply to the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation (DBEI) for a Dependent Spouse Partner Employment Permit (DSPEP), on the grounds of a job offer.

Now, INIS will grant eligible spouses and de facto partners of CSEP holders permission to reside on Stamp 1 conditions, removing the requirement to apply for a DSPEP for employment.

Arrangements for spouses/partners who already hold a Stamp 3 permission

It is open to spouses and de facto partners of persons who are currently resident in Ireland on Stamp 3 conditions to attend their local immigration office with their spouse/de-facto partner who is the holder of a CSEP, to obtain a permission to reside on Stamp 1 conditions without the need for a DSPEP. They must provide a copy of the CSEP.

The local immigration officer will issue eligible applicants a new Irish Residence Permit (IRP) on Stamp 1 conditions without the need for a DSPEP.

New preclearance arrangement

On April 1, 2019 a new preclearance policy will be introduced for the non-EEA de facto partners of CSEP holders. Both visa and non-visa required nationals will be required to seek permission to reside in Ireland as the family member of a CSEP holder prior to their arrival in Ireland.

An administration fee of EUR 100 will apply for applications made under this policy. A separate visa fee of EUR 60 will also apply to visa required nationals.

De facto partners

For immigration purposes, a person may be considered the de facto partner, opposite or same sex, of another person if:

  • the relationship between them is genuine and continuing, and;
  • they live together or do not live separately and apart on a permanent basis, and;
  • they are not related by family.

The applicant must be in a position to provide evidence of

  • a genuine, long-term, durable relationship;
  • living with their de facto partner as a family unit for at least two years prior to the commencement of this scheme.

Employers who may be affected are encouraged to contact their immigration specialist for case-specific advice.

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