Residence permit

Republic of Ireland

Country Report: Residence permit Last updated: 03/06/24


Irish Refugee Council Visit Website

Refugees and subsidiary protection beneficiaries in Ireland receive a ‘Stamp 4’ residence permit.[1] For refugees this grants permanent residency and an Irish Residence Permit (formerly the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB) card) is issued firstly for one year and then renewed for three years renewable. Refugees are able to apply for naturalisation after three years from the date of their asylum application (see Naturalisation).

Subsidiary protection beneficiaries also receive a ‘Stamp 4’ residence permit. This allows them to stay in Ireland for a specified period of time, which is normally of three years’ renewable duration. They have a right to apply for naturalisation after five years from the date they were granted subsidiary protection.

For renewal of their residence card, refugees do not require a letter from the ISD. However, subsidiary protection beneficiaries do require a letter from ISD to receive a further three years of stay in Ireland. No further information was available on any difficulties related to this process. In 2016, the Department of Justice introduced a new online booking system to address the long queues that migrants living in Dublin faced outside the ISD office at Burgh Quay to register for or renew their residence card. However, issues are still being reported using the online booking system, although a set of software fixes were introduced in September 2018 to prevent the booking of block appointments with internet bots. The Department of Justice announced in 2018 that there would be a tender to replace this system but by the end of 2019, it stated that the tender would not be advertised until the New Year.

In June 2020, an online immigration permission renewal system was launched. The system was initially made available to students living and studying in Dublin and has subsequently been extended to all applicants living in the Dublin area. Under the new online system, applicants must complete their renewal form online, upload copies of supporting documents and pay the applicable fee.[2] It should be noted that applicants living outside of Dublin must still appear in person at their local Garda station in order to renew their immigrations status, while first-time registrations must also be done in person, regardless of where the applicant lives.

A revised online appointment booking system was established in December 2020 for applicants living outside of Dublin.[3]

In January 2022, a new Immigration Service appointment scheduling system, which will streamline and further improve the registration process, was announced. The interim ISD Registration office Burgh Quay created a free phone number to call, so applicants resident in Dublin could book a first-time registration appointment.[4] As of January 2023, the revised appointment and scheduling system was fully operational, however, applicants continued to experience significant delays in obtaining appointments in order to register their permission.[5]

Additionally, a further temporary extension of immigration and international protection permissions was announced in December 2021 on account of the COVID-19 pandemic. Those whose permission to reside in the State was due to expire between 15 January 2022 and 31 May 2022 received automatic renewal of their permission to reside in the State on the same basis as the existing permission and with the same conditions attached.[6] This was the ninth and final extension of immigration permissions implemented since the outset of the pandemic in March 2020. Persons who were entitled to receive a new Irish Residence Permit (IRP) card were allowed to continue using their current expired card to enable them to depart from and return to Ireland until 15 January 2022. Persons who planned to travel abroad beyond 15 January 2022 were advised to apply to renew their immigration permission and receive a new IRP card. Otherwise, they would be required to obtain a re-entry visa in Ireland or in an overseas visa office before travelling.[7]




[1] INIS, Permission, stamps & conditions, available at:

[2] Irish Times, Wait for immigration renewals drops to 2-3 weeks – Minister for Justice, 2 December 2020, available at:

[3] ibid.

[4] Information provided by ISD, January 2022.

[5] Information provided by Irish Refugee Council Information and Advocacy Service, January 2023.

[6] ISD, Minister McEntee announces further temporary extension of immigration permission, 17 December 2021, available at:   

[7] ibid.

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation