Stay Back Period and Work Permit in Ireland


Cyril Zachariah
Updated on Jun 09, 2022 04:51 PM IST

Being an up and coming study abroad destination for prospective international students, Ireland offers a fairly open working environment for non-EU/EEA international students. In this article, we have discussed the work permits and requirements that international students must satisfy in order to stay back and work in Ireland.

Stay Back Period and Work Permit in Ireland

Working abroad has been a dream for thousands of Indians, especially in one of the English-speaking countries, not for the language spoken but for the lucrative career opportunities available for foreign nationals as well as the public resources offered by the more developed countries in the world.

There are several countries popular among prospective international students, i.e. the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia and Germany, however, in recent years, Ireland has been working towards attracting a larger number of international students. With a growing economy and increasing career opportunities, choosing Ireland as your destination of work now seems to be one of the more lucrative options.

In this article, we will discuss the options available to international students with regard to the rules and regulations for international students to work after studying in Ireland.

Stay Back and Work in Ireland After Studies

In a bid to retain international students after their studies, Ireland has introduced a Third Level Graduate Scheme Permission, which is two-year permission for international students to stay back in the country. However, this permission is specifically designed for students earning a postgraduate diploma/master’s degree or higher in Ireland. However, the Irish government offers a provision for students clearing an Honours Bachelors degree in Ireland.

The Third Level Graduate Scheme Permission: Eligibility Criteria

If you are planning to work in Ireland after completing your studies, you will only be able to do so through the Third Level Graduate Scheme that has recently been revised by the Irish government. The newly revised Third Level Graduate scheme has now been designed to allow non-EU/EEA students to stay back in Ireland and find relevant job opportunities for a period of two years.

However, it is important to qualify for the extension, as have been outlined below:

  • Non-EU/EEA students should have received a degree/award from a recognised institution in Ireland.

    • Some of the recognised institutions in Ireland include Trinity College, Dublin City University, University College Dublin, Technological University Dublin, University College Cork, and many more.

  • Non-EU/EEA students who have received a degree at NFQ Level 9 or above will qualify to stay back in the country for 24 months.

    • NFQ Level 9 is associated with a postgraduate diploma and master’s degree in Ireland. Therefore, interested candidates must either possess a master's degree or a postgraduate diploma or a higher degree in order to qualify for the 24-month stay back permission in Ireland.

  • Candidates should also present a written affirmation from the recognised institution in Ireland, confirming that the non-EU/EEA student has successfully completed the course.

  • It should be noted that candidates on a Stamp 2 visa qualify for the Third Level Graduate Once you receive the Third Level Graduate Scheme Permission, you will be able to work 40 hours a week in Ireland.

  • Additionally, students with an NFQ level 8 degree will still be eligible for the Third Level Graduate Scheme permission, however, they will only be allowed to stay back in Ireland for 12 months.

    • NFQ Level degrees include an Honours Bachelors degree and a Higher Diploma.

Note: Once you have applied for the Third Level Graduate Scheme Permission and have received the same, it should be noted that the same will not be renewable. Therefore, make the best use of the time and be well prepared for the application process beforehand.

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Documents Needed for Third Level Graduate Scheme Permission

When applying for the Third Level Graduate Scheme permission, candidates will be required to submit the necessary documents to confirm their eligibility for the programme. Listed below are the documents that international students must submit for the Third Level Graduate Scheme Permission in Ireland:

  • A course-completion letter from a recognised university or higher education institution in Ireland, outlining that the student has, in this case - you, completed their higher studies, received the results of their final exams and now qualifies to graduate from the institution.

  • Applicants must present a valid passport.

  • They should also present their respective GNIB Cards.

Along with these documents, candidates will also be required to complete the application payment for the Third Level Graduate Scheme permission, which has been set at EUR 300 per person.

Stay Back and Work in Ireland: Things to Keep in Mind

As Ireland is becoming a top study abroad destination among prospective students, the job opportunities for international students in Ireland is also increasing. Understanding the contribution that international students bring to the economy, the Irish government revised the Third Level Graduate Scheme to allow non-EU/EEA students to stay back in the country for 24 months in search of relevant employment.

With the revision of the scheme, international students must keep in mind certain things about staying back and working in Ireland.

  • While NFQ Level 9 degree holders are eligible to stay back in the country for 24 months, they will initially receive 12-month permission to stay back, which can be renewed for an additional 12 months.

    • This will be subject to the 8 year limit of staying in the country on an Irish Student Visa.

    • Candidates will also be required to satisfy the respective immigration authorities on the steps taken by the student to access suitable graduate-level employment.

  • Non-EU/EEA students with a degree from a recognised Irish-awarding body are allowed to apply for the programme if they are seeking graduate-level employment or applying for a general employment permit, a critical skills employment permit or a research hosting agreement.

  • After the 24-month extension period, non-EU/EEA students with a recognised degree from a recognised institution in Ireland may be able to apply for the Green Card or Work Permit Scheme.

While these are the most important details regarding staying back and working in Ireland after completing higher education in the country, there are some other details that can be useful for you to apply for the relevant work permit visa in Ireland and settle down in the country.

If you wish to pursue higher studies in Ireland and wish to learn more about the prospects of studying and living in Ireland, then register and connect with a team of highly experienced study abroad counsellors.

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