Legally resident non-EEA nationals who have entered the State with the intention of residing in Ireland for a period of more than three months must register with their local immigration registration officer.
An immigration certificate of registration (GNIB Registration Card) is issued by the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB) to a non-EEA national who so registers. Currently the filing fee is €150.
With effect from 19 November 2012 a fee of double, namely €300 will be charged in respect of each immigration certificate of registration issued to a non-EEA national.
“As well as being very tough on hard pressed international students already finding Ireland an expensive place to live, this new fee undermines the efforts of higher education institutions and the Government itself to promote Ireland as a destination of choice for international students. There has been no consultation with the sector about the fee increase and scant notice ahead of its implementation. This is hardly the way to do business when we are all supposed to be working together to promote the country. Students who have already arrived and started their courses, but not yet registered with the GNIB, will be shocked to learn about the fee increase. They will not have budgeted for an extra €150 and this will cause significant hardship for some”.
There are certain classes of persons who are exempt from payment as follows:
- Convention Refugees;
- Persons who have been reunified with such refugees under section 18 of the Refugee Act 1996;
- Persons who are under 18 years of age at the time of registration;
- Spouses, widows and widowers of Irish citizens;
- Civil partners or surviving civil partners within the meaning of the Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010 of Irish citizens;
- Spouses and Dependants of EU nationals who receive a residence permit under EU Directive 38/04;
- Programme Refugees, as defined by section 24 of the Refugee Act, 1996.