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What does being an Irish citizen mean?

You are formally recognised as a national of Ireland and a citizen of the European Union.
You have certain rights. These include the right to:

  • carry an Irish passport
  • live and work in Ireland and the EU
  • receive consular help from Irish embassies and consulates abroad

The Minister for Justice and Equality is responsible for deciding who is entitled to Irish citizenship. The Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) deals with applications and questions about citizenship. INIS is part of the Department of Justice and Equality. In this Department, we only process applications for citizenship through 

In this Department, we only process applications for citizenship through Foreign Births Registration.

Foreign Birth Registration

We process applications for Foreign Births Registration otherwise known as Citizenship by Descent. This can be a complex process that may require you to submit official documentation relating to three generations which may have been issued by several jurisdictions. We have seen an increase in the number of applications. We have also started seeing an increase in the number of incomplete applications.

To avoid delays:

  • It is important that all required Original State issued documentation, including Birth, Marriage and Death Certificates are included with your application. These documents contain the information that you will need to complete your on-line application.
  • The application fee must be paid at the time of application.

To help with the number of applications we have setup a new Foreign Birth Registration team. This team allows us to manage the increased volume of applications and improve efficiency.

New Customer Service Hub

We recently setup a new Customer Services Hub. This hub manages all queries related to Foreign Birth Registration and passport applications.
We communicate with customers by telephone. This method of communications ensures that we are:

  • improving our service to our customers
  • compliant with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
  • compliant with Data Protection legislation

How long does it take?

After you submit all the correct documents it takes approximately 9 to 12 months.

  • Applications requiring clarification or further documents take longer.
  • Incomplete applications delay the processing of the complete applications.

Living in Great Britain/USA/Canada/Australia

Our Embassies and Consulates in these countries do not process Foreign Birth Registrations. All applications are now processed in Dublin.

Contact Us

Contact our Customer Service Hub. They will be able to assist you be telephone.