Joining an EEA or Swiss National
If you are a family members of an EU/EEA/Swiss national seeking to rely on Directive 2004/38/EC (Free Movement Directive) please read below about the type of visa for which you should apply.
You can apply for a single journey short-stay C visa which will permit you to enter and reside in the State for up to 3 months if you are a non-EEA national:
-Who does not hold a document called “Residence card of a family member of a Union citizen” as referred to in Articles 5(2) and 10(1) of Directive 2004/38/EC on the rights of citizens of the Union and their family members to move and reside freely within the territory of Member States,
-You wish to accompany or join an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen family member who is moving to or residing in Ireland pursuant to the Directive 2004/38/EC.
Stay more than 90 days
If you wish to remain in the State for more than 3 months as a family member of an EU citizen exercising their free movement rights, you must apply (when in the State) for a Residence Card of a family member of a Union citizen.
EU citizen exercising (or planning to exercise) free movement rights
If you wish to have your visa application considered under the Directive on the basis that you are a family member of an EU citizen exercising or planning to exercise free movement rights, you must state this clearly on your visa application.
If you state that you wish to have your visa application considered on the basis of the Directive rather than under national law, and your visa application is refused, you will be offered the opportunity to apply under national law, but the normal visa fees will apply.
How to apply
Apply for an Irish visa online via AVATS
When you have completed the online application process, you must follow the instructions on the summary application form that is created by the online system. You must print sign and date the summary form and submit it with your supporting documentation.
You must submit the summary form, which you should print, sign and date, with your supporting documentation. You may be required to provide your biometric information as part of the application process.
Qualifying family member
The list of ‘qualifying family members’ is as follows:
– Child (under 21 years)
– Child (under 21 years) of the spouse
– Adopted child (subject to adoption papers)
– Dependent parent
– Dependent parent of the spouse
– Other dependent family members in the direct ascending line (for example, grandparent) or descending line (for example, grandchild)
– Other dependent family members of the spouse in the direct ascending (for example, grandparent) or descending line (for example, grandchild).
If you are a ‘qualifying family member’ of an EU/EEA /Swiss national, you are exempt from the visa fee.
Permitted family member
If you are a family member other than a ‘qualifying family member’ you are required to pay the visa fee. Such family members are referred to in the relevant Irish statutory provisions as ‘permitted family members’. If you are required to pay the visa fee you may be able to pay the fee in local currency.
You may be subject to additional charges relating to the submission of your documents. The website of the visa office, embassy or consulate will have details about additional charges and local payment options.
Visa Facilitation Services Global (VFS) Centre
If you attend a VFS Centre to lodge your application, a logistics or administrative fee may be applied by VFS. You are exempt from any other administrative fees relating to the processing of your visa application and may lodge your application in person at the relevant Irish embassy, consulate, or visa office. Any postage or courier charges associated with the submission of your application are at your own expense.
How long will it take?
Applications from ‘qualifying family members’ are processed on an accelerated basis. While every effort is made to process these applications within a reasonable time frame, processing times will vary depending on the volume of applications, their complexity, and the resources available.
Applications from ‘permitted family members’ are not subject to the accelerated process. While every effort is made to process them within a reasonable time frame, the processing times can increase when the provision of additional documentation is requested, or a detailed assessment is required.