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Government states no extension beyond 31 May despite widespread support for a much-needed extension

On the 23rd of May, the Department of Justice released a Notice for Employers (in Ireland) which announced the following :

  • At this time there are no plans to issue an extension beyond 31 May 2022.

  • Please note that ISD is experiencing a very large volume of applications the current processing time to renew permission is 10 - 12 weeks.

  • If your employee’s IRP card has expired and they are unable to obtain a valid registration card by 31 May 2022, they are still legally permitted to remain in the State provided they show proof that they have applied to renew their registration and are waiting for it to be processed.

The announcement came amidst widespread support for a further temporary visa extension. This is because of the various types of visa complications the pandemic has caused on many individuals and the lengthy period of time it takes for the relevant public offices to have applications processed at the moment. Irish Times has highlighted that the work permit delays that could severely hit summer hospitality.

The English Language Students’ Union of Ireland has highlighted that over 2,000 people whose stamp 2 visas are due to expire and who want to continue to study here in Ireland are facing having to leave the country for three months, possibly losing their jobs and accommodation, in order to comply with visa requirements. They have called out on their Twitter account along with Thomas Pringle T.D., for the government to grant such an extension.

Addressing the Taoiseach in the Dáil on the 18th of May, Deputy Pringle has stated that "True to form, the Department of Justice has issued a typically heartless response, saying there are no plans to further extend these visas." and he has asked the Taoiseach to "have a word with the Fine Gael Minister for Justice and ask her to overturn this decision"

For example, there are still many Stamp 1G and Stamp 1 holders who are waiting on their employment permit applications to be approved, which currently has a processing time that's up to 4-5 months. Many more Stamp 1G holders are still searching for a job market that has only started to recover in recent months.

Furthermore, many other visa types such as 3/4 holders who have experienced complications due to the impact of the pandemic are also in need of a visa extension in order to wait for a decision on their pending applications. These are some of the many scenarios that our office has dealt with in recent months. It is believed that tens of thousands of immigrants would suffer from expired visa permission and obligations to return to their home country if no further visa extension is granted beyond May 31st 2022.

As an Irish immigration consultancy firm based in Dublin, we see the struggles of many immigrations first-hand. Future Direct would certainly welcome another visa extension. This extension will not only be beneficial for immigrants, but also for the Irish market for retaining a qualified workforce in the country and attracting international students in the future.