Explore the path to Irish Citizenship with our comprehensive guide. Learn about the requirements and benefits of becoming an Irish citizen.

Irish Citizenship

In today’s world, citizenship is sparking curiosity among a lot of folks. Whether it’s for personal growth, career opportunities, or embracing a new culture, the chance to become an Irish citizen is very exciting and it has benefits such as the freedom to live, work, and explore across the European Union. So, let’s look at this guide to know the different ways to get it.

Understanding Irish Citizenship

Ireland is a country with a rich history and culture and has laws and regulations about who can get Irish citizenship. As of January 1, 2005, the landscape of Irish citizenship went through some notable changes and before this date, anyone born in Ireland automatically became a citizen but with the amendment of the constitution that came into effect, the landscape shifted, and birth alone no longer guarantees citizenship.

How to Apply for Irish Citizenship

By Descent

One of the most straightforward ways is through descent so If you have Irish parents or grandparents you can get it even if you were born abroad you claim Irish citizenship if your parents or grandparents were born in Ireland but to do so, you need to apply through the Foreign Births Register.

Irish Citizenship through Marriage or Civil Partnership

 If you are married to a citizen of Ireland and legally live in the country, you are eligible to apply for Irish citizenship. This route is often favored for its relative simplicity and efficiency.

Irish Citizenship by Naturalization

For foreigners living in Ireland, the best way to get citizenship is through naturalization but the process involves meeting specific requirements related to residency to be considered for Irish citizenship through naturalization, you must have lived in Ireland legally for at least five years and this will prove “reckonable residence.” In some special circumstances, three years of legal residency may be enough to apply.

Irish Citizenship by Birth/Descent

It is another way to consider If you, your parents, or your grandparents were born or adopted in Ireland, you may already be eligible for citizenship but for people born in the country before January 1, 2005, Irish citizenship is automatic. If born after that date, it depends on your parents’ nationality and residency history.

Irish Citizenship by Association, Adoption, and Special Declaration

In certain unique situations, you may be eligible for Irish citizenship through associations or special declarations. These cases often need proof of lawful residence in Ireland for a specified duration and are subject to the discretion of the Minister.

Eligibility Criteria for Irish Citizenship by Naturalization

Before beginning your journey toward getting Irish citizenship, it’s important to understand the eligibility criteria for naturalization:


Applicants must be at least 18 years old to apply for Irish citizenship by naturalization but there are exceptions for minors, such as those born in Ireland after January 1, 2005, with Irish parents or ties.


Good character is a fundamental requirement for naturalization. While there’s no strict definition, your background is checked, including criminal records, ongoing investigations, driving infractions, civil cases, and cautions. Full disclosure on your application is important.

Future Intentions

You must intend to reside in Ireland in good faith after obtaining citizenship. Declarations of loyalty to Ireland and a commitment to abide by the country’s laws are part of this process.

Lawful Residency in Ireland

Recognizable residence plays an important role in naturalization and applicants must have lived in Ireland legally for at least five years, with some exceptions. The residency must be continuous, and absences from the country should be explained.

Reckonable Residence: What Counts and What Doesn’t

Determining what periods count as reckonable residence is crucial, while UK, Swiss, and EEA nationals have specific criteria, other long-term visa holders and dependents may also qualify. It’s essential to understand the nuances of different visa types and how they contribute to recognizable residences.

Required Documents for Irish Citizenship Application

The specific documents required for your application may depend on your circumstances. However, a standard application typically includes the following:

  • A valid original passport
  • Copies of all passports held since entering Ireland, including biometric pages and immigration stamps
  • Two passport photographs, each signed and dated
  • A certified copy of your birth certificate
  • A copy of your Irish Residence Permit
  • A copy of your permission to remain letter
  • Copies of your bank statements for the last 3 to 6 months
  • A letter from your current employer documenting your start date
  • Copies of 3 payslips from the past 6 months and a copy of your tax statement (P60) for each year of your residence in Ireland
  • A certified copy of your civil partnership/marriage certificate, if it applies to you.
  • It’s important to note that the document requirements may differ for UK, Swiss, and EEA nationals.

The Application Process

The journey to Irish citizenship involves several steps:

Qualification Check

Before starting processing your application make sure you meet the eligibility conditions specified in the Nationality and Citizenship Act.

Application Form

Depending on your chosen route to Irish citizenship, you will need to complete the relevant application forms, such as Form 8, Form 9, Form 10, or Form 11. Be meticulous in filling out the form, and don’t leave any sections blank.

Document Gathering

Collect all necessary supporting documents, ensuring they are translated into English if needed. If you’re an adult applicant, include a tax clearance certificate to certify your tax affairs.

Statutory Declaration

When you’re ready to submit your application form and documents, you must make a statutory declaration to attest to the accuracy of the information provided. A qualified witness, such as a solicitor, notary public, commissioner for oaths, or peace commissioner, must witness this declaration.


Thoroughly review your application form and attached documents against the provided checklist. Once everything is in order, submit your application to the designated office.

Application Fee

Applying for Irish citizenship comes with an application fee of 175 Euros, payable through a banker’s draft. Ensure you make the payment to the Secretary-General, Department of Justice. This fee is non-refundable, even if your application is rejected.

The Path to Irish Citizenship

The process of obtaining Irish citizenship is a journey that requires careful planning, adherence to requirements, and patience. Whether you’re pursuing citizenship by descent, through marriage, or by naturalization, understanding the intricacies of each route is essential. By following the guidelines and preparing your application meticulously, you can embark on your path to becoming an Irish citizen.

In conclusion, Irish citizenship is a valuable asset with numerous benefits so whether you’re drawn by your heritage, family ties, or the allure of living in Ireland, understanding the various avenues to citizenship is essential. By meeting the eligibility criteria and carefully following the application process, you can realize your dream of becoming an Irish citizen and enjoying the opportunities it brings.

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