Final temporary extension of immigration permissions announced

The extension will give people the necessary time to make arrangements with the Immigration Service in Dublin or An Garda Síochána outside Dublin

A final temporary extension of immigration and international protection permissions to early next year has been announced.

This applies to permissions that are due to expire between September 21, 2021 and January 15, 2022, and includes permissions that have already been extended by the previous seven temporary extensions since March 2020.

Announcing the measure, Minister for Justice, Heather Humphreys TD, reassured people whose immigration permissions are due to expire shortly that their legal status in the country will continue to be maintained.

“This extension will benefit those that have so far been unable to get an appointment to register a first time permission or have yet to renew an existing permission. However, I must emphasise that this will be the final temporary extension and I strongly encourage everyone to use the time between now and 15 January to make all efforts do so and not to wait until the last minute when demand may be high.”

Welcoming the announcement, Minister of State for Law Reform, Youth Justice and Immigration, James Browne TD, said the extension will give customers the necessary time to make arrangements with the Immigration Service in Dublin or An Garda Síochána outside Dublin to ensure that their immigration permission is registered or renewed in the normal way before 15 January 2022.

“Customers can do so without the additional worry of falling out of permission in the meantime through no fault of their own. Everyone who is covered by this final temporary extension should either register or renew their permission by 15 January 2022 to ensure that they have a qualifying permission to remain in the State after that date, if that is their intention.”

This final temporary extension of immigration permissions means that people who held a valid permission to be in the State in March 2020 are legally permitted to remain until January 15, 2022, even if  their Irish Residence Permit (IRP) card has expired and they are awaiting a new one. Renewal is on the same basis as the existing permission and the same conditions will continue to apply. Special arrangements will, however, apply for international students, including English language students, as set out below.

International students

For international English Language Students, the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science (DFHERIS) indicated in July that English language schools may resume in-person classes.

This extension of permissions will allow students on a Stamp 2 permission, who may have been unable to attend face-to-face classes during the pandemic, to attend in-person over the coming weeks.

Students who have already completed the maximum number of three language courses may continue to work in line with the Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP) criteria until 15 January 2022 without enrolling in a further English language course. However, they must register for a new qualifying immigration permission by 15 January 2022 to ensure they can remain in the State after that date.

The Department of Justice is currently considering whether adaptions to the current ILEP criteria may be required to protect the health of staff and students, such as the 85% attendance requirement if a student tests positive for COVID-19 or must self-isolate. Further information will be provided on this as soon as possible.

Third level graduates who hold a 1G permission but were unable to secure work during the pandemic may apply to the Department of Justice for a 12-month extension of that permission. Students on a Stamp 2 can apply to transfer to a Stamp 1G once they meet the conditions.