- What is the civil partner visa?
- Who is eligible for the visa application process?
- What are the Civil Partner Visa Application Sponsorship requirements?
- What is the visa application process?
- What are the required documents to include in this visa application?
- What happens after this immigrant visa is approved?
- What happens next after the border?
- How Can Total Law Help?
- Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Irish civil partner visa?
According to the citizenship and immigration services, a civil union is a legally recognized relationship that is akin to marriage for couples of the same sex.
Please note that only couples who entered into a civil partnership before 16 May 2016 will be recognized as civil partners in Ireland. If you entered into a civil partnership after then, you will have to apply for an Irish Spouse visa.
The civil partner visa is an immigration pathway open to proposed civil partners and civil partners of Irish nationals from non-EEA visa-required countries.
The spouse visa/civil partner visa falls under the long stay ‘D’ visa to join family members. With these immigrant visas, the holder is permitted to live permanently and work in Ireland without requiring an employment permit.
Who is eligible for the visa application process?
As this immigrant visa depends on the personal circumstances between you and your partner. The basic and general requirements according to immigration law is that all applicants must meet are:
- You must be up to 18 years.
- You and your partner must have met face-to-face at least a couple of times. The relationship can not solely exist over just internet sites or telephone.
- You must hold recognizable marriage certificates or civil partnership certificates
- You and your civil partner must provide evidence that you have a genuine relationship
- You both must commit to living together as civil partners or husband and wife permanently
What are the Civil Partner Visa Application Sponsorship requirements?
As a U.S citizen, your civil partner must be residing in Ireland to sponsor your application. In addition, to be eligible, they need to show be:
- An Irish citizen who resides in Ireland or has the intention to reside in Ireland with permanent resident status with a permanent resident card
- Be a UK national, as UK nationals have the same immigration benefits as Irish citizens
- Be a foreign national and legal resident with an Irish Employment Permit
- Foreign nationals and legal residents with Stamp 4 permission, which also includes long term residents
- Be a foreign national and legal resident with Stamp 5 permission.
- Students studying an accredited doctorate course in Ireland
- Ministers of religion with Stamp 3 permission
- Researchers under hosting agreement or with a Critical Skills Employment Permit
What is the visa application process?
Your application must be paper-based.
Your application and supporting documents must be submitted in writing to Immigration Service Delivery, the national visa centre.
You must complete the “Civil Partner of an Irish National immigrant visa petition” application package and submit it by registered post, with all the required original documentation to the following address:
Spouse of Irish National Unit Residence Division – Unit 6
Immigration Service Delivery
PO Box 12695
What are the required documents to include in this visa application?
This visa application must meet the following required documentation and meet the following requirements:
- Completed Application Form, signed and dated (by you, the American citizen and the Irish National)
- Your original marriage/civil partnership certificate (if married)
- Your original passport(s) and birth certificate
- Your Irish spouse/civil partner’s original passport and birth certificate (Passport Cards are not acceptable)
- Divorce papers from the applicant and/or spouse (if applicable)
- Bank Statements for the previous 6 months for the Irish National
- Bank Statements for the previous 6 months for the American citizen
- Evidence of Private Medical Insurance
- Evidence of joint accommodation such as rent book, joint tenancy/lease agreement, mortgage payments, proof of homeownership
- Evidence of address in your name and your civil partners such as recent utility bills (for example – gas, electricity, water, television license, letters from children’s schools (if applicable).
All original documents will be returned following the application, and copies will be retained on file. Incomplete application forms without the required forms will not be processed by consular officers and will be returned to you.
All documentation provided for immigration purposes with incomplete applications will be returned. All documents must be provided in either English or Irish. If they are not, they have to be translated by an accredited translator prior to submission.
What happens after this immigrant visa is approved?
Per the Irish immigration rules, all citizens of non-EEA countries, including American citizens, must go through the border protection at the point of entry upon arrival in Ireland.
At border control, an immigration/ consular officer will look through the travelling civil partner’s documents. The immigration officer will then decide if your spouse or civil partner is permitted to enter Ireland with their new shiny immigrant visa.
Your spouse or civil partner should tell the immigration officer that they plan to apply for updated immigration status or residency while inside Ireland, based on their relationship with you.
At border control, your spouse or civil partner will be asked by the consular officer for the following documents at a minimum:
- Valid passport
- D Visa (if they are from a visa-required country)
- Marriage or civil partnership certificate
If your spouse or civil partner is granted entry clearance to enter Ireland, the immigration officer will place a landing stamp on their passport. The landing stamp gives them permission to stay in Ireland with an expiration date indicated or for a maximum of 3 months.
What happens next after the border?
Your spouse or civil partner must be in Ireland before they can register with immigration authorities and apply for permanent resident status.
This step is an extremely important step, as this residency permission allows your U.S citizen spouse or civil partner the immigrant visa to live with you in Ireland.
Your spouse or civil partner must register with the immigration authorities within 90 days of their arrival in Ireland or within the time specified on the landing stamp (which may be for less than 90 days) provided at border control.
Depending on where in Ireland you are living, there are different places you can go to register. You and your spouse or partner need to provide the following to register with immigration and apply for residency:
- Your original civil partnership certificate
- Your original passport
- Your spouse’s or civil partner’s original passport
- Evidence of your joint address in Ireland
- Registration fee of €300 ($316.20 United States Dollar)
- Biometrics will be taken
Should your civil partner be approved, the consular officer will put a “Stamp 4” in your U.S citizen civil partner’s passport. Stamp 4 is equivalent to indefinite leave to remain, permanent residence, or settled status.
Your spouse or civil partner then has permission to live and work in Ireland for the length of time stated on the stamp. Your U.s citizen civil partner will be given a registration certificate called an Irish Residence Permit (IRP).
This is a credit-card sized plastic card that displays basic information about the cardholder and will be valid for 3 years. After 3 years, your civil partner will need to renew this immigration status before it expires.
How Can Total Law Help?
Total Law specializes in immigration law and can help you bring your U.S citizen to Ireland on a spouse visa. We are a team of accomplished immigration lawyers that are competent and ready to support couples with legal assistance and immigration advice for their civil partnership applications.
Contact us now to discover how we can work together. We are ready to support you 7 days a week by phone at +1 844 290 6312, or via our online chat.
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A civil partnership is a legal relationship entered into by a couple that grants them similar legal rights to married couples. Civil partnerships are not formed by vows, but they are formed by signing the civil partnership document.
This spouse visa is valid for 3 years – and will have to be renewed to continue the immigration benefits to stay in Ireland for longer.
In the instance of a couple breaking up, they must inform the Irish Garda National Immigration Bureau Registration office where you applied, within 7 days of the breakup.
You will also need to contact the Spouse of the Irish National Unit detailing the circumstances surrounding your separation, at least 3 months before your immigration permission expires.
You can stay in Ireland with your current immigration permission after a separation only if you’ve been in the civil partnership for 3 years and resident in Ireland for the last 2 years before the separation occurs. If it’s less time, it is possible that you may have to leave the country and return to the US.