Irish Citizenship Through Association FAQ

What is Irish citizenship though association?
Irish citizenship through association is another avenue to pursuing Irish citizenship, in the event you do not meet the criteria to apply through Irish citizenship by descent, and your parent was not registered on the Foreign Births Register (FBR) when you were born.
In order to apply for citizenship by association, which falls under the category of citizenship by naturalization, other criteria must be met, such as showing you have lived, or live in Ireland, and proving that you have a solid and deep connection with Ireland.

What legislation is relevant?
Association is defined in Section 16 of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956 as:
a person is of Irish associations if:

(a) he or she is related by blood, affinity or adoption to, or is the civil partner of, a person who is an Irish citizen or entitled to be an Irish citizen, or

(b) he or she was related by blood, affinity or adoption to, or was the civil partner of, a person who is deceased and who, at the time of his or her death, was an Irish citizen or entitled to be an Irish citizen.

How do I qualify?
To make an application through association, you are expected to have lived (lawfully and legally) in Ireland for a specified period, usually around 3 years. Also mandatory is that you are of “good character”, and meet age requirements.
Applications made through naturalization are decided by the Irish Minister for Justice, who has absolute authority in deciding whether to grant or deny an application.

What can I do if I don’t meet the residency requirements? Can I still apply?
If you apply for citizenship through association (which is under the category of naturalization), the requirement is to have 3 years (known as reckonable residency) of legal residency in Ireland. However, applications that do not meet the residency criteria will need to demonstrate a strong case: that you have deep and tangible connections with Ireland.
The Irish Minister for Justice has absolute authority and discretion to waive, or not, the eligibility requirements. Therefore, if you do not meet the residency criteria, you will need to present a strong case for association.
The more you evidence a strong and tangible connection with Ireland, the stronger your application for Irish citizenship by association will be.

How can I present a strong case?
In order to increase the likelihood of your application having a successful outcome, you will need to present your links and connections to Ireland, this is done by including relations, friendships, work ties, that you may have there.  As well as any Irish clubs or associations that you may be a member of. It is also useful to outline your future plans in terms of visits, or plans to reside in Ireland. All will serve to strengthen your application.

What documents are needed?
You will be required to submit birth, marriage and death certificates for each individual in your family lineage. Therefore, you, your parent, grandparent and great-grandparent who was born in Ireland.

Where do I apply?
Applications are made through the Citizenship Division of the Department of Justice, and can be found on their home webpage.

How long does it take to process applications?
Applications can take up to 30 months to process and assess. However, it may take longer if further information is required.

How much does it cost to apply?
There is a non-refundable application fee of €175, which must be made payable to the Secretary General, Department of Justice.
If you are granted citizenship, there will be an additional cost of €950 (adults), and €200 (for minors for the certificate of naturalization.

What happens once citizenship is granted?
If your application is successful and you are granted citizenship, you will be required to attend a citizenship ceremony in order to take an oath of fidelity. Once this has happened, you will receive a certificate of naturalization, which is evidence of citizenship.
You can then apply for your Irish passport.

If you have any questions, or would like more information about applying for Irish citizenship via association, you can contact us directly and one of our friendly advisors will be in touch to answer your queries.

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