Applying For an Irish Visa

If you are a visa required national, you will need to apply for a visa before you enter the country. The type of visa you need depends on why you are entering Ireland and how long you plan to stay.

At Gibson & Associates, we specialise in helping non-Irish/non- EEA Nationals with the Irish visa application/residency process. For more information on how we can help you, complete an Online Enquiry now, call us on 1890 989 289 or email us on for immediate assistance and advice.

For more information on how we can help you with your visa application, complete an Online Enquiry Form now, call us on 1890 989 289 or email us on for immediate assistance and advice.

What type of Visa do I need?

The type of visa you need depends on why you are entering Ireland and how long you plan to stay. You can find out more information about common visa types and common questions by clicking on the links below:

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Business Visas

You will need a business visa if you work outside Ireland but need to enter the country to carry out duties related to your work. Types of activities will differ depending on your line of work, but Business Visas are often required for:

  • Meetings in Ireland
  • Attending trade shows in Ireland
  • Trade agreements
  • Visiting clients in Ireland
  • Research, discovery or fact-finding trips to Ireland.

Immigrant Investor and Entrepreneur Programme

 Investor Programme

The Immigrant Investor Programme is open to non-EEA nationals and their families who commit to an approved investment in Ireland. Approved participants in the Programme and their immediate family members will be granted rights of residence in Ireland which will allow them to enter the State on multi-entry visas and to remain here for a defined period but with the possibility of ongoing renewal. The Programme will facilitate participants, over time, in establishing a permanent relationship with Ireland. 

Each application will be examined on its merits in a qualitative examination by an independent interdepartmental committee. The investment has to be good for Ireland, good for jobs and in the public interest, the funds invested have to be legally acquired and owned by the investor (i.e. not borrowed). The person has to be of good character.Business meeting

 Entrepreneur Programme

The purpose of the Start-up Entrepreneur Programme is to enable non-EEA nationals and their families who commit to a high potential start up business in Ireland to acquire a secure residency status in Ireland.  The Programme was established by the Irish Government in 2012 to stimulate productive investment in Ireland and to offer residency in Ireland with its associated advantages to dynamic business professionals with a proven record of success.  

A non-EEA national may apply for residency status as an individual, or he/she may also apply for residency status for themselves and their spouse/ partner and children under the age of 18.  Where family members are granted residency under the Start-up Entrepreneur Programme, as long as the applicant fulfils the criteria for residence status under the Programme, that status will automatically be maintained on their spouse/partner and minor children living in Ireland.

Work Visas / Work Permits

Depending on how long you plan to work in Ireland and if you have already obtained an offer of employment, there are different options when it comes to work visas and permits in Ireland. These can differ from other types of visas in terms of processing times and processing fees.

Atypical Working Scheme

For short-term employment in Ireland, you can apply for an Atypical Working Scheme. This applies to Non-EEA nationals who are required to work in Ireland where:

  • There is a skill shortage identified
  • The applicant is working as a locum doctor
  • The applicant can provide a specialist skill to a working environment
  • The applicant is a short-term paid intern working to support an education course studied outside of Ireland.
  • The applicant is a nurse / midwife on Clinical Adaptation and Assessment Programme RCSI Examination.

Applications generally take 10 days to process, and the fee payable to the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service to process the application is €250.Businesspeople Having Meeting In Modern Open Plan Office

Van der Elst

This type of work visa allows non- EEA nationals who are employed and legally resident in another EU Member State to work in Ireland for up to 12 consecutive months, once the non-EEA national is coming to provide a service on behalf of their employer. Applications under the Van der Elst process are assessed by each individual case.

Employment (Permits etc.)

You can apply for an Employment (Permits etc.) to department of Jobs, Enterprises & Innovation. Once an Employment Permit is issued you can then seek entry to the State in line with the conditions set out in the Employment Permit.

Spouse/Family Visas

This is a long stay visa/ reside visa, and is for non-EEA nationals who are looking to reside in Ireland for longer than 3 months with a spouse or family member who is an Irish citizen or who is legally resident in Ireland. With this type of visa, you need to show a clear link to the Irish citizen.

De Facto Permission

If you are in a relationship with an Irish citizen or resident, but not married, you could apply for De Facto residency permission. In order to be granted this type of residency, you must be able to provide compelling evidence of your relationship. You must also have been living together permanently for at least 2 years at the point of application, and planning to continue your permanent cohabitation. You must both live in Ireland or be planning to live in Ireland, and both parties must be self-sufficient when granted this type of residency. (This means your sponsor and yourself are not permitted to be dependent on social welfare or public funds.) You find out more information on this time of permission on our main immigration page. 

Tourist Visas

If you are planning to travel to Ireland and are a non-EEA national, you can apply for a Tourist Visit visa of up to 90 days. If you are visiting family or friends in Ireland then you must show a clear link to the sponsor/reference in Ireland.

Dublin on the map

Student Visas

You must apply for this visa if you wish to study an educational course in Ireland for more than 3 months, for example a university degree. 

Students studying

Join Family Visas (Dependence on Family Members)

If you want to enter Ireland and reside for longer than 3 months with a family member or members, you must apply for a long stay ‘Join family’ visa. If you are dependent on a family member living in Ireland, this visa will grant you ability to reside with your family members. 

How long will it take to Process my Visa application?

All applications are processed in order of the dates they are received.

Processing times can vary depending on your home country, but as a general guide you can expect to receive your visa around 8 weeks after applying, however during busy periods it can take longer.

Your application can also take longer to process if you have not provided complete or correct supporting documentation, or if you have other personal circumstances that require extra consideration.

You can check which visa applications have been determined each week on the Irish Naturalisation & Immigration Service Website here.

Please note that it is strongly advised that you do not make any concrete travel arrangements to Ireland until your visa application has been approved.

How Far In Advance do I need to apply for my Visa?

You must apply for a visa up to 3 months before the date you plan to enter Ireland.

If you are entering Ireland from a country different to your own, you must also have the relevant visa for that country in your passport before being granted entry into Ireland.

What Documentation do I need for my Visa Application?

Depending on the type of visa you are applying for, the documentation you need to support your application will vary. You can find more details of which documentations you need using the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration service website.

How Do I Apply For A Visa?

You can apply for both long-term and short-term visas online using the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration service’s website.

Other Types of Visas Not Mentioned

There are many different types of visas available to suit the different circumstances of applicants. If the visa you need is not detailed on this page, don’t worry. A full list of all the visa types can be found on the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration service’s website. At Gibson & Associates, we can assist with the application of all types of visas.

How Gibson & Associates Can Help with Visa Applications

Applying for visas can be a complicated and lengthy process, especially if you find yourself limited by time and language barriers. At Gibson & Associates, we offer advice at each stage of the application process in order to secure the best possible application outcome for you.

Our expert immigration lawyers have assisted huge numbers of clients seeking Irish visas and have experience in all visa applications, including those not detailed on this page. Get in touch with us today and find out immediately how we can help you achieve an approved visa application.

Complete an Online Enquiry now, call us on 1890 989 289 or email us on for immediate assistance. You can also find more information on our main immigration page.

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