EU Dublin Regulation
The EU Dublin Regulation is an EU law on the rules about which country should assess your application for international protection. It applies to Dublin countries, which include all the countries in the EU, plus Iceland, Switzerland, Norway and Liechtenstein.
The Dublin Regulation is also called Dublin III because it was the third version of an agreement that was originally signed in 1990.
When you apply for international protection, you are asked about your history as part of your application. If you have applied for international protection in another Dublin country, or if the International Protection Office (IPO) decides that another country should be responsible for your international protection application, you could be transferred to that country.
Examination of your application under the Dublin Regulation
When you apply for international protection, the International Protection Office (IPO) takes your photograph and your fingerprints. The IPO checks this information against data held by Eurodac. Eurodac is an EU database that stores the fingerprints of international protection applicants, or people who have crossed a border illegally.
If the IPO have reason to believe that another country should be responsible for your application for international protection, it will use the Dublin procedures to determine which country is responsible.
The IPO does not examine the details of your application for international protection until it has made a decision in the Dublin procedure. It will ask you for the information it needs to make its decision. This could mean you must attend an interview, or you could give them the information they need in writing. Your solicitor can help you.
Reasons another Dublin country is responsible
The reasons why another country could be responsible for your international protection application are (in order of importance):
- Your husband or wife, or your dependent children have international protection, or are asylum seekers in another Dublin country
- You have (or previously had) a visa or residence permit in another Dublin country
- Your fingerprints were taken in another Dublin country
- There is evidence that you were in another Dublin country, even if your fingerprints were not taken
Other family members
If you have other family members that depend on you (or you depend on them) in another Dublin country, that country could accept the responsibility of assessing your international protection application. This applies to your mother, father, child, brother or sister. Your family members must be living there legally, depend on you (or you depend on them), and either you or them are:
- Pregnant or have a newborn baby or
- Seriously ill, disabled or elderly
The IPO will send you a transfer decision when it has finished examining your case under the Dublin Regulations. If the IPO decides that your international protection application should be transferred to another Dublin country, the IPO will:
- Refuse your application for international protection
- Contact the other Dublin country and request that they either take charge of your application or take you back to that country
You can appeal a transfer decision to the International Protection Appeals Tribunal (IPAT). Your appeal must be received within 10 days of the transfer decision.
Requests to take charge
Ireland can ask another Dublin country to take charge of your international protection application if you have not made an international protection application in that country. Ireland must request this within 3 months of your application for international protection in Ireland. If the request is not made within 3 months, then Ireland must take responsibility for your application.
The other Dublin country must accept or refuse the request within 2 months of the request. If it does not respond within 2 months, then it is treated as if they have accepted responsibility for your international protection application.
Requests to take back
Ireland can ask another Dublin country to take back your application if you made an application for international protection in that country. Ireland must send this request within 2 months of your Irish application. The other Dublin country must respond within one month, or within 2 weeks if the request was based on information from Eurodac.
Ireland can make an urgent request in some situations. For example, if you were refused permission to enter Ireland or you are held in detention. Urgent requests should be answered within one month.
Transfers to other Dublin countries
Following a transfer decision, the Repatriation Unit of the Department of Justice will contact you with details of how your transfer will take place.
If you appeal the transfer decision, you can stay in Ireland while you are waiting for a decision on the appeal.
You can read an EU leaflet: