- What is the Join Family Long Stay Visa?
- Who can apply for the Join Family Long Stay Visa to Ireland?
- What are the eligibility requirements for the Join Family Long Stay Visa?
- How to apply for the Join Family Long Stay Visa?
- What supporting documents do I have to include in the Join Family Long Stay Visa application?
- How can I prove my relationship with my sponsor in Ireland?
- How can IAS help?
- Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Join Family Long Stay Visa?
The Join Family Long Stay Visa is intended for foreign citizens who want to join their spouse, partner, or other family members in Ireland and want to stay there longer than three months. To be able to come to Ireland under this visa, the relative you want to join has to be an Irish citizen or be lawfully living there.
You can only apply for the Join Family Long Stay Visa if you have a sponsor there. Individuals who can become your sponsor include:
- An Irish citizen
- A citizen of a EU/EEA country
- A non-EU/EEA citizen who lawfully lives in Ireland on an employment permit
- A foreign citizen living in Ireland on Stamp 4 or Stamp 5
- A PhD student studying in an Irish accredited programme
- A researcher under a Hosting Agreement.
When submitting your visa application, you can choose whether you wish to apply for a single entry or a multiple-entry visa to Ireland.
Who can apply for the Join Family Long Stay Visa to Ireland?
There are several routes you can take to come to Ireland on the Join Family Visa depending on your relationship with the Irish citizen or lawful resident. Categories of individuals who can apply for the Join Family Visa are:
- De Facto Partners
- Civil Partners
- Adult Dependents
- Child Dependents
- Dependents of Critical Skills Employment Permit Holders.
The exact requirements you need to meet and documents you have to submit might vary depending on who you are applying as. Talk to our immigration lawyers to find out what criteria apply to your circumstances.
What are the eligibility requirements for the Join Family Long Stay Visa?
There are several general requirements that all applicants, regardless of the specific route they are using to apply for the Join Family Visa, need to meet. These are:
- You can prove that your relationship with the Irish family member is genuine and pre-existing
- You have a valid passport
- You can prove that your family member is eligible to sponsor you
- You can prove that your family member lives in Ireland legally
- You can prove that your sponsor has enough money to help you financially after you arrive in Ireland
- You can provide evidence showing that you are dependent on your sponsor (if applicable).
As part of your application for the Join Family Long Stay Visa you have to submit a number of documents that prove your eligibility for it.
How to apply for the Join Family Long Stay Visa?
If you want to apply for the Join Family Long Stay Visa, you have to submit your application online. In the online form you will have to provide personal details and state the reason for you wanting to immigrate to Ireland.
After you have completed the online application, you will see a summary of your application. There you will find information regarding the immigration office that you should submit the required documents to. You also have to print, sign and date the summary form and submit it with the rest of supporting documents.
The next step is to pay the visa fee, which can be done online. After that you have to send all the documents to the office mentioned on your visa application summary sheet.
What supporting documents do I have to include in the Join Family Long Stay Visa application?
To prove your eligibility for the Join Family Long Stay Visa, you have to submit the following supporting documents as part of your application:
- Signed and dates application summary sheet
- Receipt showing that you paid the visa fee
- Two colour passport sized photographs
- Your original current passport
- A signed and dated application letter in which you provide details of your sponsor, the reason for you coming to Ireland, and your full contact details
- A copy of your sponsor’s passport or other document proving that they have the right to live in Ireland
- Evidence of your relationship with the sponsor
- Evidence that your sponsor meets the minimum level of earnings required
- Evidence of having adequate accommodation in Ireland.
All documents that you submit during the application process have to be originals. Photocopies are not accepted. Moreover, if any of the documents were issued in a language that is not English, you have to have them translated by an official translator.
How can I prove my relationship with my sponsor in Ireland?
An important requirement for the Join Family Visa to Ireland is being able to provide evidence confirming your family relationship with the sponsor in Ireland. The nature of evidence depends on the type of your relationship with them.
If you are applying for the Join Family Visa as a spouse or civil partner of a person lawfully living in Ireland, you can submit, for example, a marriage or civil partnership certificate or photographs and previous correspondence showing that you have been in a relationship for a while.
If you are submitting the application as a child of the sponsor in Ireland, you can provide the original birth certificate or adoption order.
Finally, if you are a de facto partner of the sponsor in Ireland, you can include registration certificate of partnership, a joint tenancy of property, or evidence of having previously visited your partner in Ireland.
These are examples of supporting documentation that might be required for the main types of relationships that can apply for the Join Family Visa but you might have to provide other evidence depending on your individual circumstances.
Talk to our immigration service delivery department and they will help you prepare a portfolio of evidence with all the documents that might be necessary.
How can IAS help?
At IAS we have a team of highly-qualified lawyers who have expert knowledge of Irish immigration law. They have helped many clients successfully apply for various visas to Ireland, including the Join Family Long Stay Visa.
If you hire one of our lawyers, they will guide you through each step of the application process, making it less stressful. They will also ensure that your application has been completed to the highest standard and that you submitted all the required documents.
Our lawyers can also write you a Letter of Representation to strengthen your application.
To find out more about how we can help, call our lawyers today on (+353) 061 518 025.
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The processing time of applications for Join Family Visas to Ireland varies depending on several factors. Each application is assessed on a case-by-case basis so certain cases might be more complex than others. Moreover, applications are processed in chronological order so how long you will have to wait depends on how many other people are applying for the visa at the same time.
The waiting time also depends on the immigration status of your sponsor in Ireland. If they are an Irish national, you should get the visa within 6 months. If, however, they come from a non-EEA country but lawfully live in Ireland now, you have to be prepared to wait for up to 12 months.
If your relationship ends after you come to Ireland on the Join Family Visa, you have to notify the Garda National Immigration Bureau Registration Officer within 7 days. You have to explain what happened and you have to ask for permission to stay in Ireland.
Whether or not you will be able to remain in the country depends on your job and the circumstances surrounding the break up. If you are currently in Ireland and your relationship ended, contact our lawyers for advice on what to do next.
The fee for the Join Family Long Stay Visa depends on whether you are applying for a single or multiple entry visa. If you want to get the single-entry permit, you have to pay €60. If, however, you want to be able to leave and re-enter Ireland several times throughout the duration of your visa, you have to pay €100.
If you are thinking of coming to Ireland to join a family member on the Join Family Long Stay Visa, you should submit your application at least 6 months before you plan to travel. This way you will allow enough time to provide additional documents or information that might be required.