Seeking asylum and working in Ireland

Arriving in Ireland as an asylum seeker in need of protection can be overwhelming and confusing if there is lack of proper guidance.

In order to help those in need of advice, here is an introductory explanation of the overall procedure to follow.

From the 31st of December 2016, a new procedure entered into force regarding applications for asylum seekers – the so-called “single procedure”.

In the past, seeking international protection consisted of different applications and appeals, which made the process long and complicated. With the introduction of the “single procedure”, the applicants will make only one application, which they may appeal only once.


As defined by the International Protection Act 2015,

“a person who qualifies for international protection is a person who is either—

(a) a refugee and in relation to whom a refugee declaration is in force, or

(b) a person eligible for subsidiary protection and in relation to whom a subsidiary
protection declaration is in force.”


With the single procedure, the application will be examined as follows:

  • “At first instance, it will be handled by the International Protection Office (IPO), which will make a recommendation in relation to your case
  • If the recommendation is negative and you are entitled to appeal, any such appeal will be dealt with by the International Protection Appeals Tribunal
  • Finally, based on the recommendation of the International Protection Office or the International Protection Appeals Tribunal, the Minister for Justice and Equality will decide whether to give you a refugee declaration; give you a subsidiary protection declaration; or refuse your application.”


Whether you make your application at the port of entry or at the International Protection Office, you will have to take part in a preliminary interview, which will verify whether you want to apply for protection or not and if your situation is suitable for an application.

Once you have applied, you have the right to seek legal advice and an interpreter, if needed.

After further examinations have been carried out, if accepted, you will receive the permission to remain in the state and a temporary residence certificate, until further proceedings.

Of course, one of the most important things one needs in order to get used to a new life is finding a job. While it is possible for a pending asylum seeker to find a job in Ireland, the process is not so easy at the moment.


A „temporary measure” establishes that asylum seekers must find a job that pays a starting salary of at least €30,000 per year, while their prospective employer must show they were unable to find a suitable Irish or EU citizen to fill the position. At the same time, applicants can apply for a job only in certain sectors.

However, the Department of Justice assures that, with the full implementation of the EU Reception Conditions Directive, soon there will be more access to employment for applicants, including the possibility for self-employment.

For more information on the subject and legal assistance, don’t hesitate to contact us.




By Adelina Zarnescu






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