Regularisation of Long-Term Undocumented Migrants Scheme

Introduction

A new scheme to allow people who have no immigration status in Ireland to apply for legal residence will open for applications on 31 January 2022. The scheme will be open for applications until 31 July 2022.

The scheme is for people who have been undocumented in Ireland for at least 4 years at the start of the scheme, or for at least 3 years for families with children under 18.

You apply online (when the scheme opens), upload documents to prove your identity and residence history, and pay an application fee. If your application is approved, you will get a Stamp 4 residence permission.

You can apply just for yourself, or you can apply as a family.

In addition, international protection applicants, who have been waiting for a decision for 2 years or more, can apply through a separate application process. You will be contacted by the Department of Justice with further details.

Who can apply?

You may qualify for the scheme if:

  • You are undocumented in Ireland
  • You meet the residence rules
  • You have the documentation and identification needed
  • You have not been convicted of serious criminal offences
  • You are not a threat to national security
  • You pay the application fee (if required)

Undocumented

You are undocumented if you are from outside the EU or EEA and you do not have permission to be in Ireland. You may have had permission previously and it expired, or you may never have had legal residence in Ireland.

You can apply for this scheme if you are undocumented (and meet the other criteria) regardless of the reason why or how you became undocumented.

You can apply if you have been issued with a Deportation Order, or you are in the ‘Section 3’ process. The Section 3 process is when you have been sent a notification that the Minister for Justice intends to make a Deportation Order, and gives you the chance to set out reasons why you should be granted residence.

The scheme also applies to former student visa holders.

International protection applicants

International protection applicants are not undocumented, but can apply for residence through the scheme. You are eligible if it is at least 2 years since you made your international protection application. The application process is different for international protection applicants. You will be contacted by the Department of Justice with further details.

Residence rules

You can apply for yourself, or you can make a family application. You, as the primary applicant, must have been undocumented for at least 4 years on 31 January 2022, unless you have dependent children.

You can include your family on your application. If you have children under 18, the length of time that you must be undocumented is reduced to 3 years.

You can include your spouse/partner and dependent children aged 18-23 on your application if they have lived with you for at least the last 2 years. You must have proof that they have been undocumented for the past 2 years.

Children aged 24 and over must make their own application and cannot be included in a family application.

For children aged 24 and over who cannot live independently because of a mental or physical disability, you may be able to include them in your application. You should contact undocumented@justice.ie before making your application.

Documents you need

You must be able to prove your identity and that you have lived in Ireland for the required period of time.

You do not need to prove that you have a particular level of income or savings.

The list of documents is now available.

Criminal record and national security

You could be refused if you have been convicted of serious criminal offences. You are unlikely to be refused based on minor criminal offences. You must declare all criminal convictions as part of your application.

Your application could be refused if you are deemed to be a threat to national security.

Application fee

You must pay an application fee.

  • €700 for a family
  • €550 for an individual

You must pay the full fee at the time when you make your application.

If you are an applicant who is in the international protection process, you do not have to pay a fee.

How to apply

You apply online. Guidance on how to complete the online form will be available when the scheme launches in January 2022.

You will be able to upload your documents as part of the online application.

Decisions and appeals

If your application is approved, you will get a letter granting you permission to remain in Ireland for 2 years. This can then be renewed. Each member of your family that was part of your application will get a separate letter.

You must register your permission and get an Irish Residence Permit. You will get a Stamp 4, which means you can work without an employment permit. Children under 16 do not have to register.

Refusals

If your application is refused, you will get a letter which will tell you the reasons why it was refused. You can appeal this decision. If your appeal is successful, you will be granted permission to remain in Ireland.

If your appeal is not successful, your case will be referred to the Repatriation Unit of ISD. If you have a current outstanding application for international protection, or some other residency, that will still be processed if you are refused residence under this scheme.

You can read more about the Scheme on the ISD website.

Page edited: 13 January 2022