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Spouse of a EU citizen moving to Dublin

Hi, I have been trying to get all the information possible on this.
I am mexican married to a Spanish woman, I have been living and working in Spain for the last 8 years. We have a 3 year old boy and a 1 year old baby already.
I have been offered a good job in Dublin but I don't have my spanish nationality yet, so I would be coming as a spouse of an EU citizen. I know I have rights as a EU family members but can't quite find the correct answer to what I am looking for.
As a family member of a EU citizen, I do have the right to go to Ireland, and on my arrival I have to go to my immigration officer but:
I get different information in every website, on the Irish embassy in Spain it says I have the right to work as a family member of a EU citizen right away, on the department of Jobs and enterprise it says that I have the same rights but I should apply for "Stamp 4", however in the INIS it states that in order for me to apply for EU Treaty Rights the EU citizen (in this case my wife) should be exercising her EU treaty rights, which includes she should be employed, demonstrate she has enough funds to live there or she is studying, etc.
It also states that my case could take up to 6 months to receive an answer for the residency.
As I am getting the job offer (non-EU), My wife wouldn't be working at the beginning, so in order to exercise her EU Treaty Rights she can just enroll to some course in the local university.
My questions are:
- Should we start the process from Spain? Or do we have to wait until I get to Ireland to do that?
- Am I able to work as soon as WE get to Ireland? or do I have to wait the "6 months" until I get a response?
- I read something about getting a STAMP 4 in the meantime, how does this work?
Basically I am looking for information on experiences when you got to Ireland in a situation similar to mine. How should we proceed? The fact that we have 2 children would speed up the process? I have looked on the internet, called the irish embassy, National Citizens website, Europa website and everybody says it’s ok, but when I tried to contact INIS in Ireland I always get a recording, so I sent them an e-mail and got a simple response with no information of what I was looking for.

Any information is much appreciated.

Hello Maundler.

Welcome to Expat.com! :)

In meantime, you can read this article on Work visa in Ireland.

Hope other members will be able to solve your problem.

Thank you,
Aurélie

You have many good questions and unfortunately I can only answer one based on my wife's experience (she is not a citizen of the EU; I am an Irish national). You can work once you go to the immigration office and receive your residency card. You can go to the immigration office once you arrive. At least, my wife did not need any sort of appointment and she was issued her card that same day. I hope this helps.

i think your wife needs to get herself sorted in either a job/study or something so that she is exercising her eu treaty rights in order for you to get access to the eu residency card. That takes up to 6 months. As far as applying for a job immediately, that is a tricky one but you will have to be in the country to make this enquiry. Its difficult as it is when you are living in the country but since your situation is a bit tricky as you are the bread winner, you will have to make sure you  are able to work immediately arriving in the country. You will need that card in order to get the job anyway. I don't think you can get that card(stamp 4) eu residency card in less than 6 months and its also subject to conditions which you have already mentioned anyway. I am married to an italian and held a residency card up until I became a citizen. My husband had to satisfy all of the criteria in order for myself non-eu and son to  get residency. I was fortunately already employed in ireland on a  work permit before I met my husband and the eu law came into force. Your situation is somewhat different from mine because you are already married to the eu citizen looking to work in another eu country hence you will need to check if you can come by a work permit by another means to tie you over for the 6 months.

I wanted to add that the irish immigration department is anything but straightfoward. I understand your frustration because I have been living here 10 years dealing with the system. It is difficult but if you can find someway around it,(by being able to work on a permit) it might help you in the short term whilst waiting for the residency card. I think if your spanish citizenship is going to take less than 6 months to get then rather get that sorted instead of getting tangled into the irish immigration system. It is frustrating, time consuming and painful to say the least and ofcourse if you need the job then you can hardly drag your family thru all of this. I hope it all works out for ye.

Hello,
I am in the same boat as you. I am non-EU national and my wife is EU national. I am planning to work in Ireland from next year.
As far as i have heard from my friend who is working in Ireland right now, i came to know that if you are a spouse of EU national then you do not need a work permit to work in Ireland. You're treated as a EU national (except that you are not a citizen yet) and have all the EU rights.
So, you can go to Ireland and start doing your work. Just to make everything is in order, you have to visit Garda (local police station) and they will tell you if you need any stamp or any other document.

Let me know how it goes for you. I will meet you next year :)
Good luck!

You can find official details on this website:
http://www.citizensinformation.ie/pl/mo … n_ireland/

Thanks for all the answers!!!!
Well, I will update on my situation.
As I said, I tried contacting INIS, which is supposedly the institution that will grant/deny my "work permit", I contacted Citizens information, DJEI and even the European Union!! LOL..

Anyway, everybody said something different. But at last I got a response from INIS that, sort of, calmed me down.

The European Union in Ireland and in Spain told me that I shouldn't have a problem whatsoever. That being a spouse of a EU member I would get the same rights as a EU Citizen, as long, obviously, as my spouse was coming with me, but they told me that I should be able to work if I want no questions asked.

Citizens information told me the same thing, except they told me that I should go into Garda and explain my situation, they would issue a temporary Stamp 4 in the meantime and I would be able to work and then wait 6 months until my Residency came out.

Then DJEI told me as much as Citizens information did. Although they did say something about my spouse being under the EU Treaty Rights.

And at last I contacted AGAIN the INIS since they didn't respond correctly the first time and this is what they said:

You must both be residing in the State for you to apply for residency under
       EU Treaty Rights. If your spouse is studying you must both have
       comprehensive medical insurance so that you will not become a burden
       on the State in case of illness/accident. If this office is
       satisfied with the documentation received with your application you
       may be issued with a temporary Stamp 4 for 6 months that will enable
       to seek employment while your application is being considered by
       this office. If your application is successful you may be issued
       with an Stamp 4EUFam for 5 years

So, my wife will be taking up some classes at the university in Ireland and I will immediately ask for the stamp 4. After all, these guys are the ones issuing the Residencies or not.. so although every institution has its own approach to EU Treaty Rights, I think INIS in this case is the one who upholds them and manages them how they "see fit". So, this answer, I consider, is the closest to reality.

I will update on the situation as it moves forward.. Now I have to go to Dublin to have a dinner with my "soon to be" employers to, hopefully, close the deal and start making our move.

Wish me luck!

I am happy to hear positive feedback from you!!!
Enjoy your dinners in Dublin :D
Best wishes!!!

well I wish u the best 2 because dealing with the irish immigration is a mine field. It depends on who u speak to on which day because they  don't all sing from the same song book.I along with many non-nationals have first hand experience of how badly organized this system is here in ireland. I think we are qualified to write books on this but I wish you well and anybody else who wants to take on this system. Perhaps after 10 years they have learnt from us guinea pigs because thats what I feel we can be called, guinea pigs. Its a good country to live in despite this issue don't be put off.

Thanks for the response sanbo.. one more question. since when are you residing in Ireland?

I have been here since january 2002. I was one of the first applicants for the eufam cards when the law first came into force in ireland at the time and I was married then to my husband who is italian. I only received my eu residency card 7 months later and citizenship since january 2012 just to give you some stats. I originally entered the country on a work permit as I was single at the time. I also meant to add that no 2 people that I know of have had similar experiences with irish immigration.

Yeah, everywhere I read it seems Irish immigration is by far the messiest of them all... I mean, not even UK (surprise), when I tried for UK, they told me directly at immigration when I was there that I won't have a problem when applying since my wife was with me.. so it is strange irish immigration turns out to be the most difficult one.. Well, since I am doing everything by the book, one must suppose I won't have a problem, but as you said, in every part of the world, it comes down to who you speak at the moment of the application.

Hopefully they have learnt something from you and immigrants from 5-10 years ago! :)

My brother and his family are living in the uk for the past 9 years and other than complaining about the cost of immigration they have not had any trouble. My brother and his entire family received british citizenship nearly 3 years ago( a 6 month process). I arrived in ireland a year before he and his family moved to the uk. I only got my citizenship after lodging my  original application in 2007, this january 2012. My son will be 10 years in ireland in august, he will only be attending the citizenship ceremony end of august 2012. Most of my colleauges have moved on to australia and back to south africa because less hassle there. When I originally applied for my eu residency card, I was already in this country 5 years. I had been on a work permit before I applied for the card. They took my passport, my sons passport and my husbands passport and all of our original documents and held on to it while our  eu residency application was being processed. We could not leave the country ofcourse which meant I had to cancel a flight to south africa, my son could not fly with the school to belgium and my husband could not leave on business. They only returned all of the original documents after numerous emails and threats that we would take this matter higher if they do not release our travel documents because the only time they can remove these documents is if you are being investigated for a crime. Needless to say, our application was approved and we eventually got the documents back only 7 months later and not even within the 6 month period they said. As far as i know that has been improved and they no longer hold on to the original documents any longer. In my opinion the eu residency card seemed more of a hassle than anything because I could not even travel without my husband. I could only go to italy and spain with this card but other eu countries don't seem to accept it. I don't know if there has been any changes. I think the eu residency card is just another way for them to keep tabs on us but there is no FREEDOM of movement as far as I am concerned. I was better off on a work permit than having the eu residency card. Its a pity you did not want to wait for your spanish citizenship because at least then you don't have all of this hassles.:)

sanbo :

My brother and his family are living in the uk for the past 9 years and other than complaining about the cost of immigration they have not had any trouble. My brother and his entire family received british citizenship nearly 3 years ago( a 6 month process). I arrived in ireland a year before he and his family moved to the uk. I only got my citizenship after lodging my  original application in 2007, this january 2012. My son will be 10 years in ireland in august, he will only be attending the citizenship ceremony end of august 2012. Most of my colleauges have moved on to australia and back to south africa because less hassle there. When I originally applied for my eu residency card, I was already in this country 5 years. I had been on a work permit before I applied for the card. They took my passport, my sons passport and my husbands passport and all of our original documents and held on to it while our  eu residency application was being processed. We could not leave the country ofcourse which meant I had to cancel a flight to south africa, my son could not fly with the school to belgium and my husband could not leave on business. They only returned all of the original documents after numerous emails and threats that we would take this matter higher if they do not release our travel documents because the only time they can remove these documents is if you are being investigated for a crime. Needless to say, our application was approved and we eventually got the documents back only 7 months later and not even within the 6 month period they said. As far as i know that has been improved and they no longer hold on to the original documents any longer. In my opinion the eu residency card seemed more of a hassle than anything because I could not even travel without my husband. I could only go to italy and spain with this card but other eu countries don't seem to accept it. I don't know if there has been any changes. I think the eu residency card is just another way for them to keep tabs on us but there is no FREEDOM of movement as far as I am concerned. I was better off on a work permit than having the eu residency card. Its a pity you did not want to wait for your spanish citizenship because at least then you don't have all of this hassles.:)

Oh my gosh, it sounds from you that it was a quite lengthy process to get your Irish citizenship.
Now a days, if u have EU residency card, then u r allowed to move freely within the EU for 90 days.

Well, my spanish nationality is currently underway.. it is supposed to come out in September/October, but I applied for it in 2010 and should have had it by now, but paperwork here in Spain is really messed up as well. The reason I can not wait for my spanish nationality is because the job offer I got was to start on October and can not wait any longer. Still I have my fingers crossed that this month I will get a letter accepting my nationality. Either way, my process will still be under way and as soon as I get a response accepting my nationality all I have to do is to travel to Spain, get it, go back and sort everything again with my spanish nationality.

So, if it is for October, I still have July and September to wait for an answer on my nationality. August here in Spain is closed and won't have any answers on it, that is the way Spain works.. so, I still have my fingers crossed, if I can get into Ireland with my nationality then it could be the best..

I'll keep you posted.

Hi Maundler.

Welcome to the blog.

I might be able to shed a little bit of light on some of your questions.

I am an EU national myself, but my husband joined me as a non-EU national directly from Africa.

It took 6 months before he got his stamp 4 EU FAM. The good thing is you will not have to pay the 100 euro for the application as your wife is an EU national. But as you can see it will take time before you get the status, and in the meantime you are not allowed to work. The stamp 4 is your residence and work permit.

Concerning the issue on whether or not your wife will need to work and be established before you can come here, I'm not sure, but it sounds correct. I was already working here before my husband joined me.

That you have children will not really affect your application process as such, as the children are not born here in Ireland, and I'm not sure if they have closed that "hole" in their immigration laws as a lot of people were using that loop-hole and getting residency based on their child's birth.

I hope this has given you a little more clarity. If not feel free to ask some more.

Regards,
Dorthe

Hello,

I think you will be able to give me the possible help as I am also having too many answers and kinda got confused. Here is my situation: I am currently holding temporary residency in Estonia (EU)married to EU citizen with 2 kids. We would like to move to Spain (Barcelona) as I got a job offer from one company. Now my questions are? Do I need to wait some months in order to be able to work? How is the procedure? Can I(non EU)work right away once I am in Spain?

To be honest no employer will wait for 3-6 months for you to join them so I would really appreciate any kind of help from you.

Thank you,

Narek
narishusa[at]hotmail.com

i am  from trinidad a non eu citizen and married to a british citizen. we wil like to move to the netherlands in order for my husband to excerise his treaty rights and maybe stay there or get to the uk. we do not know  how to go about doing either and we will like to get some information on how much it may cost for us to be over there for six months,which will include renting an apt. and how do we go about the necessary paperwork, and what type of documents do they require.

Not sure what the rules are regarding the Netherlands or British subjects. Each eu country seem to make the rules as they go along. You need to get onto the Dutch forums.

Thanks for the response, will do.

Hi am a British citizen and my wife is in Nigeria at the moment. We apply for her visa to join me in the UK but we have been refused twice. First they request some more documentations and when we reapply again they have make some changes to the law, so we didn't meet up with the new financial requirements so they refused us for the second time.

We now decide to apply thru the EU treaty law, am in Ireland exercising my right at the moment, and am just about to apply for her to join me in Ireland.

My worry is that on the form there was a section where they ask about her travel history and whether she was refused a visa before by any country.

Am confused and worried that maybe putting the uk visa refusal might cause problem or delay in processing the visa.

Any guidance and advice will really help please.

Thanks felas

The laws in Ireland is not the same as in the uk with regards visa applications and if she was refused for reasons which may not be applicable in Ireland you should not have to worry about that.  I think they are more concerned with criminal offences. Not sure why it should be a problem to get her over. I suppose you would have to have some finances as well to proof you are ok and stable and have health insurance and the rest to take care of her.my husband had to do all that for my son but he i was already living here in Ireland.

Thanks alot sanbo.

Hi Maundler,

I am very interested in your case, since I am in a similar situation. I am an Italian citizen but my husband isn't. He doesn't have the italian nationality yet, but we are considering moving to Ireland due to a job offer.
My concern is if he would be able to work as soon as we get to Ireland, while he applies for a residency permit.

Could you please advise based on your experience. Also if you have any information on where I should call to star the process or get more information, it would be most helpful.

Thanks a lot !!

I reckon he would hv to apply for an eu residency card in order to work just like all of us did. It should take 6 months but you would have to apply from within Ireland and my guess is you need to be working yourself while he is applying because you need to proof that you are exercising your eu treaty rights. You would hv to show that you have enuff money to support him and hv medical cover while he is here. If you are. Student you need all of that documentation. You can google eu treat.ie and see if you can get the application forms.all the best.

Once you arrive in ireland,go register and receive your gnid,this is id card at local guardi office,have with you marriage cert,in english trans,two passport size photos,proof of address in ireland,make sure your eu wife is present,go register for residence in dublin or nearest office to do this,you can work straight away as your wife is exerciseing her eu treaty rights,look at this directive 2004/38 eu treaty rights,they have to send your residence permit,this is a stamp in your passport which should enable you to travel anywhere in the eu and work,this should do for 5 yrs and afterwards apply for rights to remain indefinitely stamp this comes in form of stamp in passport,hope this helps a little  good luck

sando the above post is olso right your wife has to be working in ireland or looking for work or reg student and have enough money support your first 3 months in eire.

Better to declare everything,im in same situation but my wife just went back thai after her tourist visa was about run out,so not applied for spouse visa as not going to waste the money on this as cert to be refused as dont make enough money here uk,so im about to go ireland as well to exercise my treaty rights,ive been looking into this for some wks and know all the legals of the law 2004/38eu  directive,once i have found some sort work once there il be sending all doc she needs to join me in ireland,this should not be hard as im sure this cannot be refused by the eu country unless she has a bad criminal record or you cant support her but as long as wage slips and bank statements for 6 months and you do what says in ee1 visa application in irish embassy where she lives,which is free as her husbands eu resident,all these things are legally not needed as well but better doing what they ask,but should not be refused by irish embassy,remember your marriage cert must be in english if married abroad get it translated and have this with yous when reg in ireland for her gnib card two passport photos of her go reg for residence card for her and wait no longer than 6 months for it to be returned to you stamped.hope help some,good luck and im sure we will overcome this new rediculous law uk has put on there own people    jim

Dont forget to get Apostille on marriage certificate!!

Thanks a lot !!

Ireland has instituted its own interpretation of the EU Directive (2004/38/EC) which says that non-EU family members of EU citizens should be automatically permitted to live and work in the EU.

Hi all,

Big daddy kane, how did it work out for u and ur wife? 


I just put in a visa application to the embassy in abuja to join my husband in Dublin.

How long did the visa take to be issued here in Nigeria?

What does this mean? But visa nationals still need visas??

Good day,

I also read that somewhere.

I am a South African citizen. My wife has a British Passport through descent, does that make a difference?

Will I be able to work as soon as I get a residence permit.

They also talk about 6 month stamp 4 visas and a stamp 4eufam visa.

Please help.....

Thanks

jackmulder :

I am a South African citizen. My wife has a British Passport through descent, does that make a difference?

I don't think that makes a difference Jack. A British passport is still a British passport and allows her free movement and to work in the EU countries.

I've read through all of the comments above, and although extremely helpful, there seem to be so many conflicting messages. Some people are saying that exercising the EU Treaty rights will gain automatic entry and work rights for a non-EA national (married to an EA national), and others mention the necessity of the Stamp 4, which means the non-EA national will need to wait out the 6 month application period before commencing work.

My wife and I are planning to move from South Africa to Ireland in May this year.

I have been through various sources to try and get an answer as to whether my wife is required to have a work permit to be able to live and gain employment in Ireland.

I am a British passport holder and my wife has a South African passport. She has an 11 year old son (from a previous relationship) who lives and is dependent on the both of us.

From what I can gather, I would be able to reside and work in Ireland immediately. Are there any requirements from me in order to do so? My wife will be joining me a month or two later (depending on requirements for her), and her son will be joining us in August to prepare for schooling.

I have read up on the “Dependant/Partner/Spouse Employment Permit (at http://www.citizensinformation.ie/en/em … cheme.html) but this seems to relate to a Critical Skills Employment Permit, which I do not think relates to her. However, under the General Work Permits page, the following states:

Employment permit not necessary
If you are a non-EEA national you do not need an employment permit if:
•    You have permission to remain as the spouse, civil partner or dependant of an Irish or EEA national

I have read through every link on the citizensinformation.ie site and cannot seem to find a concrete answer to my question above. I have also contacted the Department of Justice and the Irish Embassies in Ireland and South Africa, but keep being redirected to the mentioned website. There doesn't seem to be anyone to contact telephonically with my query.

Our impending move to Ireland is to create a better quality of life for ourselves, and especially for our (her) son.

I would greatly appreciate any assistance or advice as we're not getting an 'absolute' answer from the websites directed to constantly..

Hi

I understand your dilemma, and dealing with irish immigration is a nightmare to say the least. Unfortunately other than whats on the website and via others in similar positions you might have to come over and enquire directly to the office in dublin. I have been out of the circulation with regards to immigration since my irish citizenship and much has improved for many of those after me, I know it takes 8 months for citizenship now. But thats not your issue at the moment. I don't know what improvements there has been for new immigrants into the system. As I mentioned I have been thru and out of this system a while ago and never to do or involve myself again. I cannot forsee a problem for your wife, if she is a professional with professional qualification in finding work and if the stamp eu4 still exist then she will need it to work. these are questions you might be able to get answers to directly at the office in dublin.

to JIM     
Hi I just had a look  to the irish immigration website. •Non-EEA family member of EU citizen where family member qualifies under the European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) (No. 2) Regulations 2006 (S.I 656 of 2006).
your wife and child can ge the eufam stamp 4, which seems to still be existing. That is what I had before I could apply for citizenship. That would enable her to stay and work in the country with you. WHen she enter ireland initially she will get a 3 month stamp. She will have to apply immediately for the eufam 4 stamp. Initially she will get a 5 yr period. She is entitled to it under you status as an eu citizen. According to freedom of movement of eu citizens dependent status. She will have to report with yourself to the irish immigration office in dublin. You have to proof a few things, that you can support her(via a job, money, health insurance etc.) that was the way it use to be. She will wait the 6 months for this card. This is how it use to work. I assume you have a job when you enter and a place to live and money to tie you over. When she leaves south africa you will have to buy a return ticket. they will not allow her to leave the country on a single ticket so forget about that. I was held up at the airport 3 yrs ago. I was travelling on my south african passport with my husband. They wanted that eufam 4 card to show I am leaving south africa legally. Your status will not help if she is held up at the passport control leaving south africa neither in ireland. She will be treated as if on holiday in ireland so hence the 3 month stamp. Don't bother to say she is coming to live in ireland. just go straight to the dublin offices and state your case there. same applies to the child. I could not find that part where you say the dependents of eu citizens don't need a work permit. I clicked on your link.
You must only refer to eu freedom of movements website. that is where the confusion lies. There is work permits for non-eu citizen-countries like south africans  married to eu citizens working and excercising their eu treaty rights in ireland. You have to satisfy the eu freedom of movement criteria in order for her to get the eufam 4. It all delpends on you as the eu citizen. My son was south african as well and my husband had to complete all the documents for him(he was 18yrs) in order for my son to remain and get the eufam 4 stamp for permanent residence.
you are an eu citizen and she can apply for the eufam 4 stamp. there is no work permit for eu citizens moving from one eu country to another  married to eu citizens. a south african does not have automatic eu rights married to an eu
citizen contrary to popular believe. I have been there done that have the certificate to proof.

Hi i am also an eu citizen spouse,

Your wife need to work here or do business or do full time study here. For this reason you can enroll her in some small college maybe in english course or something so it means she exercising her eu treaty rights. She can come first or you all family can come together at one time. She will get admission in college, open bank account which will also used as her prof of address and you guys then will get letter from your landlord that you people living on that certain address. After that she will apply for your visa. You will get temporary visa for 6 months in 3 weeks time. This visa stamp called stamp 4. And at the end of 6 months you will get 5 years visa.

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