NOTE ON LONG-TERM VISA APPLICATIONS (PRIORITY / EMERGENCY CASES) (COVID-19 VISA ARRANGEMENTS)
UPDATE AS OF 20 MAY 2021
On the 27th January 2021, an Order from the Minister for Justice came into effect which (a) imposed new visa requirements on passport holders from a number of South American countries and South Africa, and (b) directed the temporarily non-acceptance of new visa/preclearance applications with the exception of a number of Priority/Emergency case types.
We are pleased to inform our Clients that on the 20th May 2021, the Minister announced that the following category of cases have been added to the Priority / Emergency cases and therefore visa applications of these categories have now resumed:
(A) LONG-STAY JOIN FAMILY MEMBERS, including:
- All Long Stay / D-Type Join Family Visa Applications (including Third-Country National Family Members of Irish Nationals and persons exercising Free Movement under the EU Directive), and
- Preclearance Applications for:
- De Facto Partner of an Irish National;
- De Facto Partner of a Critical Skills Employment Permit Holder,
- De Facto Non-EEA Researcher on a Hosting Agreement,
- De Facto Non-EEA Family members looking to join a UK National in Ireland.
(B) PEOPLE TRAVELLING FOR BUSINESS / EMPLOYMENT PURPOSES and granted an EMPLOYMENT PERMIT by Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment to meet an enterprise’s key business ‘.
Unfortunately, the Department is not yet accepting any Short Stay Visa Applications, except for cases that fall under the Emergency / Priority criteria.
The suspension of short stay and other long stay categories such as English Language Study applications will continue to be reviewed in the coming weeks.
The Department continues to process applications received and on hand. However, for successful applications, unless the application meets the Emergency / Priority criteria, a visa or preclearance approval letter will not issue until such time as restrictions have been lifted.
Refusal letters for unsuccessful applications on hand continue to be issued.
The Department also continues to accept and process appeals. However, for successful appeals, unless the appeal meets the Emergency/Priority criteria set out below, a visa or preclearance approval letter will not issue until such time as these restrictions have been lifted (we will notify you that your appeal was successful).
Refusal letters for unsuccessful appeals will continue to be issued.
Increasing travel restrictions and the measures introduced as part of the Government’s efforts to interrupt the transmission of COVID-19 means that travel may not be possible and even if possible is not advisable unless absolutely essential.
The Priority/Emergency cases that will continue to be accepted and processed include the following:
- People travelling for business/employment purposes and granted an employment permit by Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment to meet an enterprise’s key business;
- Patients travelling for imperative medical reasons;
- Transport workers or transport service providers, including drivers of freight vehicles carrying goods for use in the territory as well as those merely transiting;
- Pupils, students and trainees who travel abroad on a daily basis and Third-country nationals travelling for the purpose of 3rd level study;
- Join Family applications;
- Preclearance applications from De Facto Partner of an Irish National, De Facto Partner of a Critical Skills Employment Permit Holder, or of a non EEA Researcher on a Hosting Agreement and Family members looking to join a UK National in Ireland;
- Persons travelling for imperative family or business reasons;
- Persons entitled to avail of the provision of the EU Free Movement Directive;
- Diplomats, staff of international organisations and people invited by international organisations, military personnel and police officers, and humanitarian aid workers and civil protection personnel;
- Passengers in transit;
- Seafarers; and
Due to local pandemic measures Visa Offices and Missions might be operating restricted hours.
You can find out the current processing time for your visa application type here: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/inis/pages/visa%20decisions
See the full notice here: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/visas-updates
21 May 2021