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Irish Naturalisation “six week rule” has been replaced, Applicants will now be permitted up to 70 days absences from Ireland!

Dublin: The Department of Justice has clarified the naturalisation conditions for Irish citizenship. According to this, you can apply for citizenship even if you stay outside Ireland for up to 70 days each year. The previous period was six weeks.

All applicants for citizenship are still required to have resided in Ireland for the preceding year.

But the new law clarifies how each year’s residence in Ireland and the time limit for leaving are to be calculated.

The old system known as the ‘Six Week Rule’ was scrapped. Instead, a provision was added that allowed the applicant to apply for citizenship even if he had been away from Ireland for up to 70 days.

However, if an applicant needs more than 70 days due to any ‘extraordinary circumstances’, an additional period of up to 30 days may be granted. A special reason must be provided in an application to the Department of Justice. The Act includes a list of exceptional circumstances, which include medical reasons, family circumstances, work, and education. The Minister of Justice has the discretion to determine whether an absence is considered abnormal.

The changes will apply to all submitted and pending applications for naturalisation, as well as all subsequent new applications. Applying the law retroactively will benefit applicants.

Documents are now electronic, and don’t wait for the postman..

The new legislation will allow the Department of Justice to electronically provide decisions and documents on various applications to the applicant.

Individuals convicted of a serious offence or deemed a threat to national security now have the option to leave the country voluntarily after being served with Section 3 notices of intent to deport them. Even if they leave the country, the new amendment allows them to return to Ireland in accordance with the law. However, if they must be forcibly deported, they will not be allowed to return to the country.

Minister Helen McEntee said in a statement that the new law change would benefit thousands of people waiting for Irish citizenship.

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