Any individual who wishes to work in Ireland needs to obtain an employment permit. Under the Employment Permits Acts 2003–2014 there are 9 different types of employment permits listed including the Critical Skills Employment Permit (formerly known as Green Card permit).The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation issues the Critical Skills Employment Permits. The employer or the employee can file an application for the permit that should be based on an offer of employment.
The permit is issued to the employee and contains a declaration of the rights and entitlements which he/she deserves. Any professional working on an employment permit is protected by the employment legislation just like the other employees.
After getting a Critical Skills Employment Permit, migrants can apply to invite their spouse, partners, minor/dependent children to join them.
Presently the occupations for a Critical Skills Employment Permit can be classified into two categories:
1- Jobs that offer an annual salary package of Euros 60,000 or more. This category includes all occupations other than certain untitled work categories and also those that are not in the interest of the public.
2- Jobs that pay an annual salary of 30,000 euros or more. Such jobs should be on the list of the Highly Skilled Occupations.
Since 2013 April, the non European Economic Area nationals with a stamp 1, 1A, 2, 2A or 3 residence permit can apply for the critical employment permit. Also these European Economic Area nationals should have a job in a profession that is listed on the Highly Skilled occupations List.
An applicant must have an employment offer from an employer or an organisation that is registered with the Revenue, trading in Ireland and registered with the Companies Registration Office. The applicant must be directly in employment and remunerated by an employer based out in Ireland. Employment offers from placement agencies is not acceptable under the system. The employment offer should be for 2 years or more.
Under the Critical Skills Employment permit in Ireland, the migrant is expected to work with their employer for a minimum of 1 year on their first employment permit. After completion of 1 year the migrant can change their employer only if a new application for a Critical Skills Employment Permit is submitted.
An applicant should have the appropriate qualifications, skills and work experience required for the job he/she is applying for. For employment offers in the euro 30000 or more salary range one must have a relevant graduate degree or higher. For employment offers with a yearly salary of euro 60000 or more, one must have a relevant degree or equivalent experience.
Registration and permission to remain
If an applicant is not from European Economic Area or Swiss citizen he/she must register with their local immigration officer in the field where they wish to reside on arrival in Ireland. At Dublin the registration can be
done at the Burgh Quay Registration Office. Starting 15th September 2016, an applicant must book an prior appointment online to visit it. In case the applicants wishes to reside outside Dublin then they should register at the respective regional registration office,
The course of registration is necessary to get the permission to dwell in the country and also to certify that the applicant has the proper immigration status, that is, as an employee. The applicant is then provided by a Certificate of Registration, which is also known as a GNIB card.
What to do on expiry of the permit?
The Critical Skills Employment Permit has a validity of 2 years and cannot be renewed. After completion of 2 years, the applicants can apply at their local immigration office for a Stamp 4 permit to work and live in the country without requiring an employment permit.
The application process for the Stamp 4 permit is quite simple. Firstly the applicant needs to submit an application form to obtain a support letter from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation to confirm the employment of the applicant. The applicant then needs to register with the respective local immigration officer along with the following documents:
- Certificate of Registration (GNIB card)
- Critical Skills or Green Card Employment Permit
- Support letter from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation confirming regular employment
Once Stamp 4 permission is granted, it will be valid for two years and would be renewable only if the applicant fulfils the criteria for it. After staying in the country for more than five years legally one can apply for a long-then term residency.
In case the migrant is not eligible for stamp 4 visas then they can be issued with a Stamp 1 visa and will continue to require an employment permit to work in Ireland.
What to do on losing the job
If Critical permit holders lose their job due to lay-off then they need to notify the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation within 28 days of leaving the job by submitting the redundancy notification form. The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation will permit them to stay in Ireland for 6 months to find another job.
An applicant needs to pay 1000 Euros as the fee for Critical Skills Employment Permit valid for two years. If an application is declined then 90 percent of the fee is refunded to the applicant.
How to apply
Applications for a Critical Skills Employment Permit have to be submitted to the Employment Permits Section of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. Either of the two, employer or the employee can apply.