Feb 22 2021

2021 Immigration Plan Actions Published

Ireland

At a Glance

The Department of Justice has published the actions it will take in 2021 to continue pursuing its strategy of improving Ireland’s immigration system. Key actions include:

  • A roadmap for the transition of all immigration services to online processes;
  • A new website with content in plain (and multiple) languages;
  • An emphasis on quality and how service levels are measured;
  • A committee to support consistency in decision making.

 

These are initial intentions and do not have any policy impact at this time. The Department is expected to publish updates on the progress of the strategy in mid-2021 and again at the end of the year.

The situation

The Irish Department of Justice has published the actions it will take in 2021 to continue pursuing its strategy of improving Ireland’s immigration system.

A closer look

The immigration plan seeks to improve immigration services, including clearing the backlog for citizenship applications and creating pathways for regularising the status of long-term undocumented immigrants and their dependents. It also seeks to simplify processes and make the immigration system easier to understand. Key intentions include:

  • A roadmap for the transition of all immigration services to online processes;
  • A new website with content in plain (and multiple) languages;
  • An emphasis on quality and how service levels are measured;
  • A committee to support consistency in decision making in applications handled by the Department of Justice, including residence, entry visas, student permissions, EU Treaty Rights and pre-clearance applications;
  • Expanding the use of online payments and improving the technology used for processing visa applications;
  • A new online appointment system for in-person immigration applications; and
  • Piloting the transition of Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB) functions to the Department of Justice, which could potentially include the transition of local registration offices.

Impact

These are initial intentions and do not have any policy impact at this time.

However, if the plans are executed, employers hiring foreign nationals in Ireland and employees seeking to enter the Irish labor market can expect improved services, more use of online platforms, more consistent decisions and increased transparency in the immigration process.

Background

This plan is part of Irish government’s overall strategy goals to promote community safety, modernize the judicial system, improve access to judiciary services, among other goals. These intentions add to improvements already introduced, such as online applications for pre-clearance and Atypical Working Scheme applications.

Looking ahead

The Department of Justice is expected to publish updates on the progress of the strategy in mid-2021 and again at the end of the year. 

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen or send an email to [email protected].