Critical Skills Employment Permit

Insights

Work authorisation extended to spouses and partners of Critical Skills Employment Permit holders without the need for an employment permit

Ireland (Mar. 6, 2019)

IMPACT – HIGH

What is the change? Irish immigration authorities have announced that spouses and partners of Critical Skills Employment Permit (CSEP) holders in Ireland, who hold Stamp 3 immigration permission, are now eligible to apply for Stamp 1 G permission, which will allow them to work in Ireland without the need for an employment permit.

There may be further change to the actual Stamp that the dependant is provided. This will not impact their ability to work in Ireland without the need for an employment permit.

What does the change mean? This is a significant policy change that will provide spouses and partners of CSEP holders with much greater flexibility to work in Ireland. Previously, a CSEP holder’s dependent family members had to have a job offer and approved employment permit before they could apply for a Stamp 1G and start working.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: Stamp 3 immigration permission.
  • Who is affected: Dependent spouses and partners of CSEP holders.
  • Business impact: Businesses may employ dependent spouses and partners of CSEP holders who have been granted Stamp 1 permission without needing to first apply for an employment permit. 
  • Next steps: Eligible Stamp 3 holders who wish to work in Ireland can now proceed with applying for Stamp 1 permission. They will need to attend an in-person appointment at the Burgh Quay Registration Office (individuals living in County Dublin) or local Garda registration office (if living outside County Dublin). The 300 EUR registration fee is waived unless the card is due for renewal. Please reach out to your Deloitte contact for guidance.

Background: The stamp is the permission on the Irish Residence Permit (formerly known as a GNIB card) that confirms a person’s immigration status. Until now, spouses and partners of CSEP holders with Stamp 3 permission were not authorised to work in Ireland and needed to first have a job offer and apply for a Dependant/Partner/Spouse employment permit. This permit was specific to a certain role with a certain employer and did not offer the flexibility of unrestricted work authorisation.

Analysis & Comments: Deloitte welcomes this change and thanks the Department of Business, Enterprise & Innovation and the Irish Naturalisation & Immigration Service for their engagement with us on this issue. The government’s announcement is good news for spouses and partners of CSEP holders, and brings Ireland in line with many other countries in providing work authorisation to dependents of high-skilled foreign workers.

These dependent spouses and partners can now work on a full- or part-time basis, although self-employment or operating a business are not allowed. The Stamp 1G process involves an in-person appointment similar to what they went through to obtain the Stamp 3. For individuals living in Co. Dublin, this will involve booking an online appointment and attending the Burgh Quay Registration Office. Those outside of County Dublin should contact their local GNIB office directly to arrange an appointment. Note that the family member holding the CSEP must also appear at the appointment, and must provide a copy of the CSEP.

Dependent spouses and partners who have not yet moved to Ireland and wish to work can directly apply for a Stamp 1G after they enter Ireland, and will not need to first have a Stamp 3. Those with Dependant/Partner/Spouses employment permit applications currently pending can request a cancellation by email to the authorities. Please reach out to your Deloitte contact for guidance.

Note that dependents of other types of employment permit holders, such as a General or Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) employment permit, are not affected by this change, and remain ineligible for work authorisation based on their status as dependents.

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