Am I eligible?
If you have an Irish-born parent, you automatically
are considered an Irish citizen. There is no need to
apply for citizenship. If you want a passport, you
merely need to complete a passport application. You are
also eligible if you have a grandparent and, in a very
few instances, a great-grandparent who is an Irish-born
citizen. The rules and restrictions governing
citizenship come with the application. Lastly, you are
eligible if you are a child of a naturalized Irish
citizen, provided you were born after your parent was
naturalized. (If you are considering having a family it
behooves you to get your Irish citizenship before you
have children so that they will be eligible.)
How do I apply?
An excellent resource and a marvelous place to start
is the Guide to Dual Irish Citizenship, put out by Sidhe
Information Services, 9104 Willow Pond Lane, Potomac, MD
20854. The total charge is $25. This thorough,
easy-to-read guide includes a complete application and
an extensive list of Irish and U.S. offices with birth,
marriage, and death certificates on file. You can also
get an application directly from the Embassy of Ireland,
2234 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC, 20008,
(202) 462-3939, or one of its consulates in Boston,
Chicago, New York, or San Francisco. Ask for the
citizenship packet for the foreign-born.
What documents do I need?
If you are applying as the grandchild of an
Irish-born citizen, you will need to provide one
original and two copies of: Birth certificates (long
forms not short forms) for yourself; the parent you are
claiming citizenship through; and your Irish-born
grandparent. (In some cases baptismal certificates are
accepted if the birth certificate is unavailable.)
Marriage certificates for you (if applicable), your
parent, and your grandparent. Death certificates, if
your parent or grandparent has died. If you are applying
as the child of a naturalized citizen (provided you were
born after your parent became a citizen), you will need
to provide one original and two copies of: Your parent's
naturalization certificate. Birth certificates for you
and your naturalized parent. Marriage certificate for
your parent and yourself, if applicable. Death
certificate of your parent, if deceased. All applicants
also will need to provide a photocopy of their passport
and photocopies of three additional proofs of identity,
such as a driver's license, pay slip, or employment ID
card You also need to provide two identical
How do I get the documents I need?
Forward as much information as you have on your
parents/grandparents. If you know the date and place of
birth then the process is straightforward and you can
expect to have the required birth record within 2-3
weeks. If you do not have the exact details then it will
take longer to locate the birth record up to 4-5 weeks.
The fee for locating Irish birth records depends on the
time involved in research + US$9.00 per record.
What is the fee?
For adults, it's $179; under 18, it's $64. Plus $5
for postage. The fee must be paid by certified check or
money order. If applying in person, you may use cash.
Once you have your citizenship, you may apply for a
passport. The passport fee is $77. Plus $5 for postage.
(Individual agencies also charge fees for certified
copies of birth, marriage, and death certificates.)
How long will the process take?
It could take months, especially if you don't have
proper documentation. Oftentimes the process hits a snag
when applicants hand in the short form of a birth
certificate rather than the long form. And things can
slow down when a baptismal certificate is presented
instead of a birth certificate. The next step getting
your passport takes a lot less time.
More Information on Applying for Irish