COVID-19 VISA Arrangements
Updated: May 14, 2020
As part of the joint efforts to resolve COVID-19 and ensure consumer health, INIS has agreed to temporarily stop accepting new visa applications. This is effective from March 20, 2020, close of business. The travel restriction and steps implemented as part of the government's efforts to disrupt COVID-19 transmission means that travel may not be feasible and is not advisable unless necessary. The situation will be reviewed in the coming days in coordination with the appropriate authorities.
As part of the combined efforts to tackle COVID-19 and to ensure customer safety, INSI has taken the decision to temporarily cease accepting new visa applications.
INIS intends to resume accepting applications as soon as safety concerns abate.
Certain Priority/Emergency cases will continue to be processed and these include the following: - Emergency visa (e.g. Healthcare professionals, health researchers, and elderly care professionals); - Immediate family members of Irish citizens; - Persons legally resident in the State; - Persons entitled to avail of the provision of the EU Free Movement Directive; - Transport personnel engaged in the haulage of goods and other transport staff to the extent necessary; - Diplomats, the staff of international organisations, military personnel and humanitarian aid workers in the exercise of their functions.
Permissions that are due to expire from 20/3/2020 to 20/5/2020 are automatically renewed by the Minister for a period of 2 months.
The Dublin area Registration Office located in Burgh Quay is temporarily closed from 20 March 2020 until further notice.
Please also note that all Registration Offices for non-Dublin residents operated by An Garda Síochána have also temporarily closed.
Update dated 13/05/2020 (http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/PR20000074)
Minister Flanagan will automatically renew all immigration and international protection (asylum) permissions, that are due to expire between 20 May 2020 and 20 July 2020 for 2 months. Renewals are on the same basis as existing permissions and the same conditions will continue to apply. For existing permissions granted under the EU Free Movement Directive (2004/38/EC), the automatic renewal is subject to the requirement that the person is continuing to comply with the requirements of the Directive.
For students, this means that they will continue to be able to work if they so wish, but they must also be enrolled in a course of study to adhere to the conditions of their permission.
To ensure consistency across the system, these new measures will also apply to immigration registrations and renewals that take place outside of Dublin in local Garda Stations by the local Immigration Officers. This will also free up members of An Garda Síochána for other operational duties at this crucial time.
This measure will preserve the legal status of people with permissions about to expire in the coming period. The requirement to register this permission will not arise until Burgh Quay (and other Immigration offices) re-open or alternative arrangements may be put in place.
Approximately 450 registration appointments are usually issued for the Office in Burgh Quay each day.
Typically immigration permissions are renewed on an annual basis and are then required to be registered. In 2019, Immigration Service Delivery in the Department of Justice and Equality registered over 100,000 permissions/registrations and Registration offices in other Districts where the District Officer is the Registration Officer processed over 85,000 registrations/renewals.
This is an ongoing requirement and in the event of an inability to renew existing valid immigration permissions, over 2,000 people per week could find themselves without lawful permission to remain in the state.