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What You Need to Know About the Irish Critical Skills Employment Permit

As is the case in most countries around the world, Ireland is experiencing a strong demand for highly skilled migrants in a range of specialisms and industry sectors. At the same time, Ireland is in high demand with migrants, given its proximity to Europe and its membership of the European Union. To assist migrants with in-demand skills to make the move to Ireland, whether for the long-term or permanently, the Irish Government has put in place the Critical Skills Employment Permit. In this article, we will outline what you need to know about the Irish Critical Skills Employment Permit.

What is the Irish Critical Skills Employment Permit?

The Critical Skilled Employment Permit (CSEP), which replaces the Green Card work permit, has been designed to make it easier for migrant workers to relocate to Ireland to work. It also has specific advantages for employers in Ireland when compared to a standard work visa. The scheme is only open to applicants with the skills necessary to work in certain occupations.

The Critical Skills Employment Permit offers a number of distinct advantages to permit holders and employers, including:

  • There is no need for employers to undertake a labour market test – this reduces the timescale for recruitment and reduces the administrative impact and cost of international recruitment
  • Family members can join those with a CSEP through the family reunification scheme.
  • Family members who arrive through the unification scheme can seek employment in Ireland with any employer and then apply for a dependant/partner/spouse employment permit (which are issued at no cost)
  • CSEP holders can apply for permission to reside and work without the requirement for an employment permit once their permit expires

The CSEP is typically granted for a period of two years. Those who have secured a job offer for a role of fewer than two years are required to apply for a general employment permit. It may be possible for a CSEP holder to change employer during the two years of their permit, but only if they are made redundant or unforeseen circumstances arise which “fundamentally change the employment relationship”.

Which jobs are included on the Critical Skilled occupation list?

A full list of eligible occupations is available on the Irish Government website. The list includes, but is not limited to:

  • Production managers and directors
  • Natural and social science professionals
  • Engineering professionals
  • ICT professionals – including information technology and telecommunications directors, IT specialist managers, project and programme managers, IT business analysts, architects and systems designers, programmers and software development professionals, Web design and development professionals
  • Health professionals – including medical practitioners, radiographers, radiation therapists, vascular technologists/physiologists, gastrointestinal technologists/physiologists
  • Health and social services managers and directors
  • Nursing and midwifery professionals
  • Teaching and educational professionals

The roles to be included on the Irish skills shortage list are determined by the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs, whose purpose is to assess the labour market needs for Ireland in the coming years. As such, the list changes in response to actual areas of shortage and also projected areas of future economic growth.

What are the eligibility criteria for a CSEP?

In order to make a successful application for a CESP, you will need to satisfy a number of criteria, as follows:

  • You must have a valid offer of employment from a genuine employer which is based and trading in Ireland. The employer must be registered with the Irish Revenue Commissioners and, where applicable, the Companies Registration Office/Register of Friendly Societies.
  • The role must be on the Critical Skills Occupations List
  • The employee must have the relevant qualifications, skills and experience necessary for their role. For some jobs, a relevant degree qualification or higher may be required. Nurses and midwives require a third level degree or diploma accepted by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland. A non-EEA national who does not have a degree qualification or higher must have the necessary level of experience.
  • There are two minimum remuneration thresholds for the CSEP; €32k or €64k. The lower threshold is only available for a limited number of ‘strategically important’ occupations.

How can I apply for an Irish Critical Skills Employment Permit?

The Irish Department of Enterprise, Trade, and Employment (DETE) recommend that you apply no later than three months before you are due to start work in Ireland, this will ensure that there is sufficient time to process your application and issue your permit. The application process is completed online. DETE recommend reviewing their checklist before you start completing your application form to ensure you have all of the necessary details to hand. As part of the application process, you will need to pay a fee of €1,000. If your application is refused, DETE will refund €900 back to you. Once submitted, your application will enter a queue and be processed in date order (see the current processing dates). Once you reach the second stage (processing), your application will be assessed. If further information is requested by a DETE case office, you will need to ensure this is provided within 28 days. At this stage, your application will be granted or refused. If refused, you will have a further 28 days to request that the decision be formally reviewed.

If your application is approved, you will then be able to apply to your local Irish consulate for a visa to make your journey to Ireland.

Final words

The process of applying for and securing a Critical Skilled Employment Permit in Ireland is relatively straightforward, assuming that you have an offer for an eligible job, you have the qualifications and/or skills to perform the role, you meet the salary requirement for the role, and there is nothing in your immigration history which may lead to a refusal. As with all aspects of immigration, it pays to take the time to ensure all aspects of your application are correct. An immigration lawyer can check your application and accompanying documentation before submission, with a view to maximising your chance of receiving a positive decision and avoiding any potential delays.

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O.L

Andy Tieu is absolutely amazing.

As a lawyer myself I can categorically say that he knows his stuff, gentle, responsive, cares about you and not just about the money, very professional.
I mean I can go on and on!

Andy and the entire team at Reiss Edwards are amazing!

Thanks again Andy.

Kiran Sardar


I found Joe very helpful and tremendous patience which is a must in this professional as there are lots of emotions always involved in each and every case.

The way they dealt with my case during COVID19 Situation is highly appreciable. I would definitely recommend Joe D. and Anna F. Anna is an amazing lady, her patience is beyond my words.

Her hard work and professionalism have no boundaries. She is the right person for all type of cases.

Thanks to Anna and Joe for all your support and guidance which helped me fulfill my dream.

I would say Reiss Edwards is lucky to have Joe D. and Anna F. Great job Reiss Edwards.

thanks once again. Anna you’re a Gem and a Star.

Cheyam Shaked

"Anna Foley was the lawyer helping my partner obtain an EEA EFM visa. She was outstanding. Handling the case with constant correspondence over a lengthy, lockdown delayed 7-month application process. Her expert advice guided us successfully through some difficult times as a result of COVID-19. Some of the best service I have received for any service ever! Often replying to emails late at night, offering to send additional correspondence to the home office and going above and beyond in handling our case! Well done and thank you Reiss Edwards and thank you Anna!!".

Isaac .T

"Professional service. I was very impressed with the fact that my ILR application was successful 6 weeks after the submission amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. I also think the portfolio put together by the team at Reiss Edwards has played a big part in the quick turnaround of my application".

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"Reiss Edwards did a great job, and so much work, for their reasonable fixed fee. I would heartily recommend them to anyone looking to secure a Visa and /or Visa renewal. I will use them again when mine needs to renew. Great value".

Majlinda Berisha

"The help, the professionalism, the kindness from this team is phenomenal. A massive thank you to Anna Foley.

I have had a really tough time with getting my husband’s visa. My last immigration lawyer made many mistakes that caused stress, disappointments and sadness.

I was weary about getting another lawyer as I thought I was going to go through the same experience but no, it turned out better than what I had hoped or even imagined.

What I received was: constant emails and calls updating me and asking if anything else is needed. If I called and they missed my phone call I would get a call back within 10 minutes. All of my documents were carefully checked and I would get a reply the next day if anything was missing or not correct. There were times that I was impatient and asked to just send the visa off, but was reminded that everything had to be perfect and correct before submitting the application. I was told about every option I had and discussed what the best would be. I was always spoke in a nice, calm, polite manner.

The overall intelligence of this team, especially Anna Foley for me, is outstanding. I am speechless. Anna done such an amazing job on my husband’s application that although we couldn’t apply for the fast service and was told to wait for 12 weeks, we got a reply within 5 weeks.

That alone shows what an amazing and talented team Reiss Edwards are. Thank you".

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"I wholeheartedly recommend Reiss Edwards to anyone who is in search of immigration advice. I had the pleasure of speaking with Amar who has been very thorough in finding a solution to my enquiry, and followed up with additional information even after the consultation. I normally don't leave reviews, and this firm already has enough good reviews for me to need to my own anyways! However, in this instance, I do hope that my review can let anyone who reads it be aware that RE is a great choice, these people care enough to help you the best they can".

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"Thank you, Ms. Anna Foley! I am writing this with tears of joy.

As a family, we are all grateful to Anna Foley and her firm Reiss Edwards, for doing all the hard work and giving us the best support. Finally We found the best law firm".

Saira Lawson-Brown

"Highly professional organisation and really supportive solicitors. Ina Iteva the solicitor that was provided to us was a blessing in disguise, as our first solicitor was let go off due to pandemic. She was so supportive and understanding throughout the process, and my husband spouse visa was granted due to their effort and attention to detail. We constantly try to keep in touch with her and consider her as more of a friend now than a solicitor. Sure, to bother her and the firm more in the future".

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"My Tier 1 Investor Visa was dealt with quickly and without issue. Would recommend Reiss Edwards as an Immigration law firm in London. Thank you to the team".

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"This is the only firm that i spoke with that didn't ask for money before listening to me, will be using them again. I used Reiss Edwards for my Tier 2 visa application and it was successful. The team was ever present and happy to answer my question. The caseworker that dealing with my case went on holiday yet by case did not suffer one bit. Another lawyer stepped and took over the case without any hassle".

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Top Notch Immigration Service

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"I have been using Reiss Edwards for three years now for my family's immigration application. Both for my initial application and extension. They are really affordable. The team of solicitors at this firm are probably one of the most efficient and economical in terms of cost. They offered free advice over the phone and spent good time with us before inviting us for consultation".

Gallagher Jones

"I contacted Reiss Edwards to help me with my wife's UK settlement visa. They acted with utmost professionalism throughout the entire application. I spoke with Joe Dinh, he is an immigration solicitor and he is one of the best solicitors out there. He ensured that there was little to no room for error. At some point I thought he was over cautious. He remained calmed and continued to assure us on our immigration matter. Most people in his position would have panicked but he was calmed and continued to assure us. We received out positive outcome very quickly".

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"I am glad that i instructed Reiss Edwards on my visa matter. It started with a 20 minutes free immigration advice. I met with Amar to discuss my ILR refusal. He gave me a great deal of quality advice and decided to take on my messy case. I had doubts on the merits of my case by he was relatively convinced he could win it. That made me quite secure. To be honest, things did not start as quick as I would have wanted, but they kept on communicating the process and state of things to me.A big thank you to Verusha and Foram. They were also very helpful. Brilliant and informative. Their fee was fair and reasonable, especially if you compare them to other law firms and immigration law firms in London; some of whom even told me that i would not be able to get an indefinte leave to remain in this country. The process was long but was worth it. In the end, a big thank you to Reiss Edwards".

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"Fantastic Solicitors!!! My wife's spouse visa extension application was refused by the Home Office and they gave her 14 days to leave the country. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they said "OK don't worry we will sort this out". They put together the list of documents for me to obtain and they prepared a bundle which was as thick as the printer it came out from.We followed everything they asked us to do and in the end we won our appeal and got our spouse visa. We can't recommend them enough and we have promised ourselves never to make any more UK visa applications without them".

Amir Sandeep

"The team of lawyers at Reiss Edwards are very professional and friendly people. Their experience in and around UK immigration law is quite extensive; be sure that you application is in safe and competent hands. My immigration matter was an indefinite leave to remain application based on Tier 1 on a self-employment basis. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards made sure that the application was perfect and ready to be accepted. I got a positive decision and I recommend them highly for anyone who needs a UK immigration help".

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