Ireland - COVID-19: Temporary Suspension of Visa Applications

IE - Temporary Suspension of Visa Applications

Ireland’s Immigration Service Delivery (ISD) has announced the decision to temporarily cease accepting new visa applications for all visa-required countries with immediate effect until further notice. There are some exceptions for nationals of visa-required countries who fall into a priority or emergency category.

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The Immigration Service Delivery (ISD) has announced the decision to temporarily cease accepting new visa applications for all visa-required countries with immediate effect until further notice.1  These changes form part of the Irish government’s combined efforts to manage the impact of COVID-19 in Ireland. 

WHY THIS MATTERS

The temporary suspension of the visa application process may affect employers and their globally-mobile employees who are nationals of visa-required countries in terms of the potential need for changes to their travel dates and their proposed employment start dates in Ireland. 

Temporary Suspension of Visa Applications

The ISD has announced the decision to temporarily cease accepting new visa applications for all visa-required countries until further notice.  This change is in addition to the recent announcement regarding the introduction of new visa requirements for nationals of South Africa and South American countries (see GMS Flash Alert 2021-043, 1 February 2021).  

Who Is Affected?

This change will affect employees who are nationals of the following countries3 who have not yet obtained an Irish entry-visa as part of their Irish immigration process.  Visa-required national employees who are due to commence employment in Ireland shortly and who have not yet obtained their entry-visa may need to postpone their start date in Ireland until Irish Visa Offices resume the processing of visa applications.  

Exceptions

Visa applications will continue to be processed for nationals of visa-required countries who fall into a priority or emergency category as determined by the EU Council Recommendation 2020/1475.2  This includes workers exercising occupations including health-care workers, frontier and posted workers, and persons travelling for imperative business reasons.

KPMG NOTE

Organisations and their employees that are nationals of visa-required countries with planned travel to Ireland, will need to consider these changes and may need to build additional time into their immigration/travel processes as a result.

The relevant authorities will be reviewing and consulting on this situation in the coming weeks.  

For advice on this changing situation, please contact your travel agent and local qualified immigration counsel or the Corporate Immigration and Employment Law Team with KPMG in Ireland.

FOOTNOTES

1  Department of Justice, Notice | COVID-19 Visa Arrangements (29 January 2021) at: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/visas-updates.

2  Council Recommendation (EU) 2020/1475 at: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/HTML/?uri=CELEX:32020H1475&from=EN.

3  See Department of Justice, “Countries that need a visa for Ireland” at: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/visa-required-countries.

* Please note that KPMG LLP (U.S.) does not provide any immigration services.  However, KPMG Law LLP in Canada can assist clients with U.S. immigration matters.

 

The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Ireland.

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