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Dublin: 11 °C Tuesday 7 July, 2020
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Covid-19 in Ireland: Immigration permissions due to expire to be automatically extended for two months

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan announced the “exceptional measure” this evening.

File photo. Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan
File photo. Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan
Image: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie

MINISTER FOR JUSTICE Charlie Flanagan has this evening announced that immigration permissions due to expire between 20 March and 20 May will be automatically extended for two months.

The registration office at Burgh Quay in Dublin will also close for the coming weeks with immediate effect. Anyone with an appointment there between now and 20 May will be contacted by Immigration Service Delivery.

Furthermore – to address challenges around social distancing and to ensure consistency across the system – these measures will apply to immigration registrations and renewals that take place outside of Dublin in local garda stations. 

This is all part of the Department of Justice’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak.

The measures will apply to three primary categories of people whose permissions are due to expire between 20 March and 20 May.:

  • Renewal of existing permissions/registrations – persons who hold a current a valid permission
  • Awaiting first registration – persons granted permission to land at a port of entry on condition they register at Burgh Quay or their local AGS registration office within 3 months but who have yet to do so.
  • Short stay visas - Those in the country on foot of a short stay visa and who have been granted permission to remain for less than 3 months who may be unable to leave the State and return home due to uncertainties caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Minister Flanagan said: “I want to assure people whose immigration permissions are due to expire shortly that your legal status in the country will be maintained. 

We are taking this step at this extraordinary time to ensure your safety. High-demand public offices make applying social distancing more difficult. We also want to ensure that you are not undertaking any non-essential travel to attend appointments at this time.
This is an exceptional measure in response to exceptional circumstances. If this decision was not made there is a danger that you could become unlawful in the country through no fault of your own. I am acting now to ensure this does not happen.

Flanagan added this measure would be kept under review as the Covid-19 situation progresses.

More information on the measures can be found here.

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Sean Murray

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