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Who can become an Irish citizen?

My parents were both born in Great Britain and so was I. Am I entitled to Irish citizenship based on my Irish grandparents?

Yes, you are entitled to Irish citizenship by descent if any of your grandparents was born in Ireland, but you must first register your birth in the Foreign Births Register.

I am a US citizen but my mother was born in Galway. I know that I can apply for an Irish passport, but do I have to renounce US citizenship to become an Irish citizen?

No. Since your mother was born in Ireland, you are already an Irish citizen by descent, whether you have an Irish passport or not. The Irish Government does not require you to renounce your US citizenship when exercising your right to apply for an Irish passport.

Can a Russian woman, with an Irish citizen child, (now living in Russia) receive Irish citizenship?

No. There is no entitlement for her to become an Irish citizen on the basis of her child’s citizenship.

My girlfriend and I are both Chinese citizens. We have been working in Ireland since early 2009 on work permits, and we had a baby boy late in 2012. Is the baby entitled to Irish citizenship?

Yes. As you have been legally resident in Ireland for 3 of the 4 years prior to the birth of your child, you will be considered to have had a genuine link to Ireland, and the baby will be entitled to Irish citizenship.

I am Indian, and have been living and working in Wexford on a series of work permits for the last 4 years. When I will be eligible to apply for naturalisation?

When you have lived in the State for a total of 5 out of the last 9 years, including the last full year before the date of application, you will be eligible to apply for naturalisation.

Can I become an Irish citizen through naturalisation after 2 years here as a language school student? I am Chinese.

No. You need to have at least 5 years “reckonable residence” in the State to be considered for naturalisation, or at least 3 years if you are married to an Irish citizen. Also, time spent here on a student visa does not count at all for “reckonable residence”, so your “reckonable residence” is zero.

I'm an Australian citizen and have been legally resident in Ireland since 2001. In 2002 I married an Irish citizen. Can I now apply for Irish citizenship?

Yes. As you have been married to an Irish citizen for over 3 years, and have enough “reckonable residence” in the island of Ireland, you can apply to become an Irish citizen through marriage.

I am an Irish citizen, living in Wales with my South African partner. We are getting married and intend to continue living in Wales. Does my new husband automatically become an Irish citizen?

No. You would have to be married for at least 3 years, and you would have to be living as a married couple in the island of Ireland for at least 3 years also.

I am a British citizen with a British passport. I am originally from Nepal and have been living in Northern Ireland for 4 years. Can I become an Irish citizen?

No, unless you are applying as the spouse of an Irish citizen to whom you have been married for 3 years. To become an Irish citizen through naturalisation you would have to be living in the Irish State for at least 5 out of the last 9 years.

I am French, married to an Irishman and living in Ireland for 8 years. If I become an Irish citizen, can also keep my French citizenship?

The Irish Government does not require you to renounce your French citizenship on becoming an Irish citizen.

Page updated: 7 May 2013

Language

Gaeilge

Related Documents

  • Becoming an Irish citizen
    Irish citizens are formal members of the Irish community living in Ireland and living abroad. What is Irish citizenship and what is your right to Irish citizenship?
  • Irish citizenship through birth or descent
    You are not automatically an Irish citizen if you were born on the island of Ireland. You may be entitled to Irish citizenship if your parent(s) or grandparents were Irish. You may be entitled to Irish citizenship if you were born outside of Ireland, but you may need to register your birth. Find out more.
  • Becoming an Irish citizen through naturalisation
    Naturalisation is the process whereby a foreign national can become an Irish citizen. Find out more about who is eligible to become an Irish citizen through naturalisation and how to apply for naturalisation.

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If you have a question relating to this topic you can contact the Citizens Information Phone Service on 0761 07 4000 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm) or you can visit your local Citizens Information Centre.