Applying for an Irish Passport through Ancestry?
There has been a sharp increase in British people applying for an Irish passport through ancestry since the EU referendum. Brexit has compounded the demand since British people are worried about the impact of travelling. This increase is being driven by Britons of Irish ancestry who want visa free travel to many countries around the globe. Under EU membership, travellers have access to European health insurance card (EHIC) for health cover purposes. In addition, younger people such as students have access to the Erasmus university student exchange initiative helping them to further their education.
Irish passport through ancestry
More and more of my clients are asking me to research their ancestry in the hope to find an Irish ancestor. Millions of people around the world have Irish ancestry. You can apply for an Irish passport through ancestry, if you were born outside of Ireland and if:
- one of your grandparents was born in Ireland,
- one of your parents was an Irish citizen at the time of your birth, even though they were not born in Ireland. They need to be registered on the Foreign Births Register (see below).
- one of your parents was born in Ireland, then you are automatically entitled to apply for an Irish passport.
If you are applying because one of your grandparents was born in Ireland, you need to show original documents for evidence:
- birth register of Irish born grandparent (showing parental details),
- marriage register of Irish born grandparent (if applicable), and a
- photocopy of current state-issued ID document (i.e. passport, driver’s licence, national identity card) certified as a true copy of the original by a professional
More information is available on the website for the Embassy for Ireland.
Foreign Birth Register
The Foreign Births Register allows the descendants of Irish people who have moved abroad to claim Irish citizenship. If each generation registers their birth before the next generation is born, then Irish citizenship can be passed from parent to child.
Other Irish Ancestors
You can’t apply for Irish citizenship on the basis of extended family ancestors, such as great uncles or 2nd removed cousins. In addition, you can’t use a relation such as an Irish cousin, aunt or uncle if none of your parents or grandparents was an Irish citizen at the time of your birth. In other words, you can only apply if you had an Irish parent or grandparent.
Check here to see if you are an Irish citizen by birth or decent.
Nevertheless, Brexit is not the only reason for applying for an Irish passport if you were born outside Ireland. For decades, Irish immigrants have made their way to other countries like America, Canada, and Australia for a better life. Therefore, migration has created opportunities for Americans, Canadians and Australians to gain dual citizenship if they have Irish ancestry.
Are you aware that you could become an Irish citizen? Do you have Irish ancestry? Get in touch and I could research your family history.