Ireland’s Immigrant Investor Programme: HOW TO APPLY (in 2020)

Welcome to my COMPLETE GUIDE to the Irish Immigrant Investor Programme!

The Immigrant Investor Programme (IIP) was introduced by the Irish Government in 2012 to encourage inward investment for the creation of business and employment opportunities in Ireland.

✅ 1. OVERVIEW (the basics in 3 diagrams)

✅ 2. INVESTMENT OPTIONS AND ELIGIBILITY (can you apply?)

✅ 3. RESIDENCY AND CITIZENSHIP PATHWAY (timeframes)

✅ 4. APPLICATION PROCESS (3 steps)

✅ 5. SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS (with examples)

✅ 6. TIPS, EXAMPLES AND STORIES (over 15 answers)

✅ 1. OVERVIEW (the basics in 3 diagrams)

Irish investor programme - process

Application process for irish investor visas

✅ 2. INVESTMENT OPTIONS AND ELIGIBILITY (can you apply?)

OPTION 1: Investment fund

Investment Fund

The investment fund option was set up by the Irish government because investors who might wish to come to Ireland under the terms of the programme lack familiarity with the Irish market and with the Irish business environment. As such they may be willing to invest but cannot identify a suitable project.

The Programme solves this issue through the involvement investment professionals with a proven track record in investment management and who are regulated under the existing provisions of the Central Bank of Ireland.

Ultimately, there are several benefits to investors of being part of a managed fund.

The objective of the Immigrant Investor Programme is job creation and it is recognised that funds can play a critically important role in delivering on that objective. Essentially, the Immigrant Investor Programme, in common with similar programmes in a number of other jurisdictions, is a programme that uses the immigration system to incentivise foreign investment in Ireland. 

Benefits of the investment fund option

A fund, where a large group of investors pool their assets to invest in Irish enterprises, gain the benefits of being a larger investor, allowing you to:

  • invest in a wider range of companies,
  • to spread your risk,
  • to have experts advise you on your investment and
  • to have specialist service providers/ administrators manage the investment fund on your behalf.

The Irish government recognises that for many investors under the Immigrant Investor Programme, the primary driver for the investment is the prospect of rights of residence in Ireland. In Ireland’s case the trade off is essentially immigration for jobs.

The Immigrant Investor Programme does not require an investor to make any financial transfers to the fund in advance of a decision on their application for residence under the IIP. At the same time there are various funds in operation in the market and the prospective applicant needs to know whether an investment in a particular fund would be regarded as a suitable basis for the purposes of an application for residence rights under the IIP.

Funds that meet the Irish investor visa requirements

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Therefore, the Evaluation Committee will assess applications under the IIP in respect of an investment in a fund in much the same manner as it will evaluate an individual enterprise investment and in particular at the value added the fund delivers in terms of employment.

The scale is clearly different and the business plan (or fund prospectus) will be less precise than in the case of an investment in a single enterprise but otherwise the assessment criteria are the same.

Funds are not pre-cleared as an investment under the IIP and there is no process for funds to apply to the Evaluation Committee in isolation from actual applications by investors.

Therefore, the route for a fund to be accepted as an investment for the purposes of the IIP is for it to be part of an application by an individual investor.

Once an application is approved, then it is legitimate for the fund managers to point to this and to make the factual statement that “previous investors in the fund have had their applications under the IIP accepted”.

Conditions under the Irish investor visa

The funds investment managers must be located in Ireland. Therefore, all interested investment managers must have an authorisation under the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive 2004/39/EC (MiFID) from the Central Bank of Ireland.

INIS and the Evaluation Committee for the Immigrant Investor Programme do not have any role whatsoever in the regulatory processes operated by the Central Bank of Ireland.

All funds that form part of IIP investor applications are expected to have the appropriate regulatory authorisations at the time of application.

Applications made in respect of funds that are without appropriate regulatory authorisation will not be considered.

Neither INIS nor the Evaluation Committee will offer any advice on the regulatory process nor will they make any intervention with the Central Bank of Ireland on behalf of investment managers who are in the regulatory process.

Investment fund options for Irish residency through investment

Conditions of Residence Permission for successful applicants

Applicants who are successful will be granted immigration permission in the normal manner. However, some additional conditions shall apply to the renewal of their permission after two years.

It is accepted that the funding which applicants commit to the approved investment fund may not be invested immediately at the point of issuing the initial immigration permission. Some lags may apply while the fund manager conducts due diligence on target investments in Ireland. However, the committed funding should be held in an appropriate escrow account until it is required for investment by the investment manager.

In addition, it shall be a condition of renewal of immigration permissions after the initial two year period that the approved investment fund has drawn down the committed funding and invested it into the target companies, enterprises and projects.

All approved investment fund operators will be required to submit an annual report to the Evaluation Committee which details the overall value of the fund, the performance of the fund, the withdrawal and exit of any investors (immigrant investors or otherwise) the projected return on investment and the charges and fees which have been imposed by the fund manager.

Submission of Applications

An investment fund manager shall be deemed to be an appropriate representative of the investor in his/her dealings with the IIP in the same manner as a solicitor or accountant acting for that investor. However specific authorisation must be furnished by the client to that effect.The usual criteria and supporting documentation requirement for applicants to the Immigrant Investor Programme apply regarding character, proof of wealth and source of funds. However, where the manager of an approved investment fund is submitting applications on behalf of clients, the following additional criteria also apply.

All applications for permission under the Immigrant Investor Programme involving an association with a managed fund will be assessed by the Evaluation Committee in the normal manner and according to the published criteria.

It is preferred if all applications under this option come through the appropriate investment manager or through the legal representative which the investment manager has engaged to process applications.

OPTION 2: Enterprise investment

Enterprise investment in Ireland (under the Irish investor visa program)

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Enterprise Investment

The enterprise may be a start-up established by the investor or an existing business registered in Ireland.

The enterprise must be registered and headquartered in Ireland and the investment must support the creation or maintenance of employment.

The investment may be in either a single Irish enterprise or spread over a number of Irish enterprises.

The investment must be made in the name of the individual seeking residence under the Programme.

Non-recognised investments

A purely speculative investment aimed at increasing profits through reduction in staff or moving jobs offshore would not be acceptable for the purposes of the Programme.

An investment by a corporation, even where owned 100% by the applicant will not be acceptable.

An investment which comprises the purchase of publicly traded securities will not be considered as an eligible investment under the enterprise option.

An investment in commercial property for the purposes of leasing or renting that property to tenants will not be considered as an eligible investment under the enterprise option.

Categories eligible for consideration include investments in social housing and primary care centres.

Investing in a business in Ireland (Irish investor visa programme)

OPTION 3: Real Estate Investment Trust

The €2 million investment may be spread across a number of different Irish REITs.

A REIT is a listed company, used to hold rental investment properties. It is a globally recognised standard for investment in rental property assets, already established in many developed economies including the US, Europe, Asia and Australia.

The aim of a REIT is to provide an after-tax return for investors similar to that of direct diversification.

To eliminate the double layer of taxation that typically hinders the holding of property through a company, a REIT is exempt from corporation tax on qualifying profits from rental property.

Instead, the company is required to distribute the vast majority of its profits to investors each year for taxation at the level of the investor. 

The company must have a diverse ownership – no one person or group of connected persons can control the REIT.

The taxation provisions that permit REITs to operate in Ireland were provided for in the Finance Act 2013.

Only REITs that have a listing or have applied for a listing on the Irish Stock Exchange and which have given notice to the Revenue Commissioners under Section 705E of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 are eligible for the REIT investment option under the Immigrant Investor Programme.

The investor must declare an intention to invest in a REIT as part of the application process. The Evaluation Committee will make a recommendation to the Minister as to whether or not the person should be accepted under the programme prior to the investment.

Limits may be imposed by the Evaluation Committee at its absolute discretion on the number of REIT investments qualifying under the Immigrant Investor Programme if necessary in order to prevent any perceived distortions in the Irish REIT market.

Why choose this option? – An investment in a REIT provides an investor with a lower-risk property investment model in which the investment is diversified into a pool of properties.

The debt limits within the REIT reduce exposure to negative equity risk, and REITs are income producing investments which are required to distribute the majority of profits each year, and so generate a regular income stream for investors.

OPTION 4: Endowment
A minimum endowment of €500,000 in a project of public benefit in the arts, sports, health, cultural or educational field.

The endowment should be regarded as a philanthropic contribution with a clear public benefit. Investors will receive no financial return or recoupment of the principal.

The endowment must not displace or supplement current or capital expenditure as voted by the Oireachtas (the Irish parliament). It is important that the endowment is visible to the public and beneficial to the wider community.

Where a group of five or more investors wish to combine their philanthropic endowments to contribute to an appropriate project, a minimum investment of €400,000 per investor will qualify under the Programme.

✅ 3. RESIDENCY AND CITIZENSHIP PATHWAY (timeframes)

Timeframes and requirements

Requirements when you have been approved

Applicants and their nominated family members who are successful and whose investment proposals are approved by the Evaluation Committee and the Minister for Justice and Equality, will be issued with a pre-approval letter inviting them to proceed to make their investment.

Mandatory supporting documents

The investment must be made within 90 days of the date of the letter.

When the investment is complete, the applicant must submit the following documents to the Minister.

Enterprise Investment

  • 1. A letter from a solicitor, who is permitted to practice in the State, confirming the funds have been invested in the Irish business/enterprise.
  • 2. A letter from the enterprise/business stating the financial value that has been invested in their business/enterprise.
  • 3. Evidence of transfer of funds to include payment remittance and bank statement showing transfer of funds.

Investment Fund 

  • 1. A letter from a solicitor, who is permitted to practice in the State, confirming the funds have been invested in the investment fund.
  • 2. A letter from the Fund Investment Manager stating the financial value that has been invested in the fund.
  • 3. A copy of the applicant’s subscription certificate.

Estate Investment Trust

  • 1. A letter from a solicitor, who is permitted to practice in the State, confirming that €2 million has been invested in the REIT.
  • 2. A letter from the REIT company stating the financial value that has been invested in the REIT.
  • 3. A copy of the applicant’s share certificate.

Endowment

  • 1. A letter from a solicitor, who is permitted to practice in the State, confirming the funds have been donated to the registered charity.
  • 2. A letter from the registered charity stating the financial value that has been donated to their charity.
  • 3. Evidence of transfer of funds to include payment remittance and bank statements showing transfer of funds.

When the Minister is satisfied that the investment has been made, an approval letter will issue granting the applicant a residence permission.

This permission is valid for 2 years from the date of issue of the letter.

Residing In Ireland

All successful candidates and their nominated family members will be granted a residence permission in Ireland under “Stamp 4” conditions. “Stamp 4” conditions permit foreign nationals to work, to study or to start their own businesses in Ireland. The Immigrant Investor Programme recognises that investors who benefit from the programme may have substantial business and financial interests outside of Ireland. Therefore, actual physical residence in Ireland is not a condition for renewal of your residency permission under the Immigrant Investor Programme. This condition applies to both investors and their nominated family members. The programme simply requires investors and their family members to visit Ireland at least once per calendar year.

Registering your permission on arrival in Ireland under the Immigrant Investor Programme

When applicants have fulfilled all investment and documentary requirements and have been issued with a letter granting them permission to reside in the State, they should make an appointment to register their permission at Burgh Quay registration office in Dublin.

Renewal of residence permission

Renewal of an Irish investor visa

  • It should be noted that investment performance is not a condition for residence.
  • As long as you commit your funds for the required period of time your residence will be renewed.
  • After this period, your investment in Ireland will be deemed completed for immigration purposes.
  • There will be no further conditions requiring you to make an investment in Ireland.
  • Thereafter your immigration permission will be renewed by the Registration Office for further five year periods subject again to conditions B and C above.

Naturalisation 

Citizenship through the Irish investor visa programme

  • The Immigrant Investor Programme does not provide for preferential access to naturalisation for successful applicants.
  • Successful applicants are free to apply for naturalisation in the normal manner under the provisions of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956 (as amended).
  • Please note that only residence where you physically reside in Ireland is considered for the calculation of the minimum residency period in naturalisation applications.
  • Investors and their family members who exercise their right not to reside in Ireland under the Immigrant Investor Programme will not fulfil the residency requirements for naturalisation.

Eligible Family Members

Residency status, on similar terms, to the principal applicant is also available for spouses/partners and minor children (i.e. children under 18 years of age) for whom the principal applicant and/or their spouse or partner has legal guardianship.

Family members under the Immigrant Investor Programme for Ireland

In certain cases, children between the ages of 18 and 24 will be considered for residence under the programme where:

  • They are unmarried and do not have a life partner
  • They are financially dependent upon their parents (e.g. they are in full time education)
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✅ 4. APPLICATION PROCESS (3 steps)

How to apply

The application fee

You must pay the non-refundable application fee of €1,500 by Electronic Funds Transfer. Please ensure you write ‘IIP’ and your passport number in the ‘Reason for Payment’ and/or ‘Reference’ section.

The €1,500 fee covers the principal applicant and all nominated family members. Application fees are non-refundable in the event of incomplete or unsuccessful applications.

Children

A non-EEA national may apply under the IIP for permission for themselves and their spouse/civil partner and children under the age of 18 to reside in Ireland.

Dependent children between the ages of 18 and 24 may also be considered if they are in full time education. These guidelines detail the terms for applying and maintaining a permission to reside in Ireland under the terms of the Immigrant Investor Programme. The process aims to establish that you are a suitable candidate and their proposed investment is eligible for the programme.

Rejection of Applications

The decision of the Minister for Justice and Equality on an application is final and a rejection of an application for residence under the Immigrant Investor Programme is not subject to a review or appeal.

This does not, however, prevent the person concerned from making a new application at a later date.

Where an application is rejected, the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service will communicate the reasons for that rejection in writing to the applicant.

How your application is decided

Immigrant investor programme - how your application is decided

The Evaluation Committee

  • The decision of the Minister for Justice and Equality on an application is final and a rejection of an application for residence under the Immigrant Investor Programme is not subject to a review or appeal.
  • This does not, however, prevent the person concerned from making a new application at a later date. Where an application is rejected, the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service will communicate the reasons for that rejection in writing to the applicant.

Withdrawal of immigration permission or loss of status

Residency status under the Immigrant Investor Programme may be withdrawn in the following circumstances

1. If the acquisition of the status was fraudulent;

2. In the event of the holder being the subject of a deportation order;

3. In the event of the holder being convicted of a criminal offence in any jurisdiction;

4. If the applicant fails to meet the conditions of the scheme as regards duration of the investment;

5. If the investor failed to disclose material information available to them at the time of the application or renewal that would, if known to the immigration authorities, have made them ineligible for the programme on the grounds of character;

6. Where the immigration permission of the main applicant/investor is withdrawn, then the permission granted to their family members are also withdrawn.

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✅ 5. SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS (with examples)

Which documents do you need?
Business plan

If the applicant is investing in an existing Irish business or is relocating a business to Ireland, s/he must submit the most recent audited accounts for that business in support of the application.

For investments in existing businesses, relocating business and new business proposals, the applicant should submit a comprehensive business plan, which clearly identifies the 8 financial investment being made in support of the application for residency under this programme.

The business plan should indicate how the funds will help create or maintain employment in the business.

The plan should also be clear as to the extent of the equity in the business being acquired by the investor and the manner in which the investor will receive a return on the investment. 

REIT applications

As part of the application process an investor need only indicate that a REIT investment is their preferred option and that they have the required funding for their investment.

The investor must not indicate which individual listed REIT they intend to invest in. This is to avoid market sensitive information being provided.

Any investments in a REIT made prior to the granting of approval of a REIT investment under the Immigrant Investor Programme will not be considered an eligible investment.

The required minimum €2 million investment in a REIT must be made only after conditional approval has been granted.

Endowment

Applicants who wish to pursue the endowment option should provide details of how the endowment funds are to be utilised by the beneficiary and how their endowment will be of public benefit in Ireland.

The business plan template at the bottom of the Immigrant Investor Programme web page, can be adapted by the investor or the receiving organisation for this purpose.

In addition to the specific requirement for the investment options above, all applicants will be required to submit the following evidence in support of their application.

Proving net worth – supporting documents

Evidence of Net Worth All applicants for the Immigrant Investor Programme must clearly demonstrate that they have a legally acquired minimum net worth of €2 million.

Applicants must clearly demonstrate that they are independently wealthy and do not rely on funds which are solely owned by another individual.

In addition to the declaration of Net Assets Section on the application form, you are required to provide an explanation of all of your financial activities for the previous 12 month period.

The application requires you to indicate:

1. Your income

  • the job title
  • duration of the employment
  • monthly salary
  • bonuses and commissions
  • dividends and annual income
  • gifts and inheritances and their source (in the case of a gift, explain the reason for it and the donor’s financial capacity to offer it)

2. Your investments

  • the nature and amount of the investment in the enterprise
  • the percentage (%) of shareholders’ equity acquired
  • the names of the shareholders and their equity interest in the enterprise and the name of the shareholder who sold their equity interest
  • the origin of the funds that allowed this investment
  • the registered capital of the enterprise following the transaction
  • the purchase price of real estate property acquired during this period
  • the amounts of personal investments, purchases of shares or other securities and the investment income that you derived from them.

3. Your loans

  • bank loans and the date of repayment of such loans
  • mortgage loans contracted and the date on which you repaid your mortgage
  • any other type of loan

If need be, add tables to clearly illustrate the history of the acquisition of your funds.

Under no circumstances will a loan provided to the applicant for the purpose of making an Immigration Investor Programme application be considered an appropriate source of funding. As part of the IIP application Process, the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service will undertake a comprehensive examination of the sources of proposed funding and will require significant supporting documentation attesting to the source of the funds and appropriate independent verification of said documentation from suitably qualified legal advisors in the relevant jurisdictions. If an applicant seeks to rely on loaned funds for the purposes of an IIP application, the application will be refused.

Evidence of Funds for Investment

The applicant must provide evidence of:

  • the funds that they intend to use for the proposed investment,
  • the provenance of those funds and
  • the ability of the applicant to transfer those funds to Ireland.

The funds that are intended for investment must clearly be identified in the relevant section of the application form.

Evidence of source of funds

Immigrant investor programme - how your application is decided

Sources of funds (and what you need to show for each)

 

1. Business and Investment Activities

If the funds are sourced from the applicant’s business and investment activities, the applicant should provide financial accounts together with a verification letter from a registered legal adviser who is permitted to practice in the country where the applicant’s business activities are operating.

  • This letter must confirm that the applicant can lawfully extract the money from the business.
  • The required financial accounts must be a profit and loss account or income and expenditure account if the organisation is not trading for profit.
  • The financial accounts should be prepared and signed off in accordance with legal requirements and should clearly show the amount of funding available for investment.
  • The verification letter, in the form of an original document from a legal adviser permitted to practice in the country where the applicant’s business activities are operating, must confirm that the applicant can lawfully withdraw the funds from the business.

The letter must be an original document and not a copy and must show:

  • the name of the legal adviser who is confirming the details;
  • the registration or authority of the legal adviser to practise legally in the country in which the business is operating; t
  • he date on which the details are confirmed and
  • confirmation that the applicant can lawfully withdraw the funds from the business in question.

2. Deeds of Sale 

If the funds are being sourced from the proceeds of a sale of assets, the applicant should submit original documents in the form of the deeds of sale of assets accompanied by a verification letter from a registered legal adviser who is permitted to practice in the country where the sale was conducted.

  • INIS will require the deeds of sale of assets such as business or property if the applicant has generated these funds from this source for the purposes of this application.
  • This should be accompanied by confirmation from a registered legal adviser, who is permitted to practice in the country where the sale was conducted, that the sale was genuine and that the funds realised are available to the applicant.

All deeds of sale should meet the relevant legal requirements of the country in which the sale was conducted. As a minimum requirement the deed of sale document must show:

  • the name of the applicant
  • the monetary value of the sale
  • the date of the sale.
  • If a sale is required to be registered on an official public register in the country of sale, a copy of the relevant registration should be submitted.

The verification letter in the form of an original document from a legal adviser, permitted to practice in the country where the sale was conducted, must clearly show the following:

  • the name of the legal adviser confirming
  • the details the registration or authority of the legal adviser to practise legally in the country in which the sale was made
  • the date of the sale
  • the date of production of the letter confirming
  • the sale the details of what was sold and the amount of money received from the sale, net of any mortgage or other loan
  • the name of the person receiving the money from the sale the date that the money was transferred
  • that the sale was valid according to the laws of the country in which it was conducted.

3. Inheritance and Gifts

If the applicant has been the beneficiary of an inheritance which has enabled his or her application, then a notarised copy of the will which conferred this benefit on the applicant should be provided together with a verification letter from a registered legal adviser permitted to practise in the country where the will was made confirming the validity of the will.

If the applicant has received assets, rather than money, then the applicant may not use estimates of the value of the assets as evidence of funds for investment.

The will should contain the following information:

1. the date of the will

2. the applicant should be identified as a beneficiary of the will

3. the amount of money that the applicant has inherited

4. the names of any executors, plus any codicils (additions) to the will that impinge on the amount of money that was received

The verification letter should be an original document from a registered legal adviser, permitted to practice in the country where the will was made, and must clearly demonstrate:

When applicants have fulfilled all investment and documentary requirements and have been issued with a letter granting them permission to reside in the State, they should make an appointment to register their permission at Burgh Quay registration office in Dublin.

  • the name of the legal adviser confirming the details
  • the registration or authority of the legal adviser to practice legally in the country in which the will was made
  • the date of the document produced by the legal adviser confirming the will
  • the date that the applicant received the money as a result of the settlement of the will
  • the names of the person making the will and the beneficiaries
  • confirmation of the amount of money received by the applicant
  • that the will is signed and valid
  • that the will is valid according to the laws of the country in which it was made. If the applicant has been the beneficiary of a gift which has enabled his or her application, the applicant must explain the reason for it and provide evidence of the donor’s financial capacity to offer it.

4. Divorce Settlement

If the applicant has obtained the required funding as a result of a divorce settlement, a notarised copy of a financial agreement following a divorce should be provided together with a letter from a registered legal adviser permitted to practice in the country where the divorce was decreed. Where the applicant has received possessions or assets, rather than money, estimates of the value of the items will not be accepted as evidence of funds available for investment. The verification letter in the form of an original document from a registered legal adviser permitted to practice in the country where the divorce was decreed, must clearly state the following:

  • the name of the legal adviser confirming the details the registration or authority of the legal adviser to practice legally in the country in which the divorce was decreed
  • the date of the document produced by the legal adviser confirming the divorce settlement the date that the applicant received the money as a result of the settlement
  • the names of the persons who are divorced
  • confirmation of the amount of money received by the applicant
  • confirmation that the divorce settlement is complete and valid.

All of the funds required to meet the conditions of the Immigrant Investor Programme must be capable of being transferred to Ireland and convertible to euros.

Many jurisdictions have controls over the transfer of currency and it will be necessary for the applicant to prove that the funding can be transferred to Ireland if the application is successful.

Letter from your bank

Applicants should provide a letter from their bank or financial institution as evidence that the funds can be transferred into Ireland.

This must be an original letter, on the official letter-headed paper of the bank or financial institution.

It must have been issued by an authorised official of that institution and must confirm the following details:

1. the name of the beneficial owner of the funds, which should be the applicant

2. the date of the letter

3. the amount of money to be transferred

4. that the money can be transferred to Ireland if the application is successful

5. that the institution will confirm the content of the letter to the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service upon request.

The bank or financial institution must be regulated by the official regulatory body for the country in which the institution operates and the funds are located.

Supporting documentation - general requirements

The IIP application form lists the documents which must be submitted with your application.

All documents must be apostilled by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Irish Embassy in the applicant’s country of residence. These documents must be submitted by email to iip&stepapplications@justice.ie along with your application form: Enterprise Investment

Evidence of character

All applicants, as well as their nominated family members over the age of 16 must submit their application with a statement of character from the police authorities of each country in which they have resided for more than six months during the 10-year period prior to your making an application.

Applicants must supply a due diligence report from a reputable international risk management and security screening organisation.

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✅ 6. TIPS, EXAMPLES AND STORIES (over 15 answers)

Questions and answers

Discount for Education Expenses

To encourage investors who wish to educate themselves or their family members in Irish higher education institutions, an investor may avail of a discount on their investment for any educational expenses that they intend to commit to in Ireland.

The following conditions apply:

Investors may discount their approved investment with eligible education expenses that they commit to incur within the first five years after their permission has been granted.

The education expenses must be for an Irish University or Institute of Technology.

The expenses must be for the investor and/or their family member who has been accepted on an academic programme in one of the above educational institutions.

The expenses must be indicated as part of the application process (see relevant section of the form)

The maximum discount allowable is €50,000.

Retrospective education expenses cannot be included.

Investors will need to include a letter from the college confirming that an offer of a place has been accepted by the investor or their family member.

The letter from college should also confirm the fees for each year of the programme.

Guidance on property investments under the Immigrant Investor Programme

The Evaluation Committee established under the Immigrant Investor Programme (IIP) will look at each investment proposal on its own merits.

However, based on the level of queries received, it may be helpful to give some guidance on how property based investments could potentially meet the requirements of the Programme, entirely without prejudice to the evaluation process.

A useful starting point in this respect is the underlying purpose of the Immigrant Investor Programme, which is the creation or maintenance of employment.

The IIP has been designed accordingly to facilitate productive investment into Ireland and to position Ireland as a “business friendly” country.

Sale of property or stimulation of the property market is not of itself an objective of the programme.

The investment should be aligned with the Government overarching policy initiatives as set out in Project Ireland 2040.

Particular preference is given at the moment to investments in social infrastructure such as social housing, primary healthcare centers and nursing homes.

Currently, the programme does not have an option for residential property purchase.

Q1: How long does an application take?

Applications take on average three to four months although they may take longer if the Evaluation Committee require more information from an applicant.

Q2: What is the minimum time I must spend in Ireland to adhere to the rules of the programme?

The applicant must spend a minimum of 1 day per calendar year in Ireland.

Q3: What kind of personal net assets are acceptable for participating in the Irish Programme?

Assets that have been acquired legally through legitimate business and commercial activity, inheritance, endowment and/or divorce. Applicants are required to demonstrate a minimum personal net worth of €2million.

Q4: Are assets owned by my spouse acceptable as proof of €2 million net worth?

No, assets solely owned by other individuals, including a spouse, will be not accepted as evidence of net worth.

Q5: If I get married or have a child after receiving the residency, can I add them as my dependants?

Yes the investor can add additional nuclear family members (spouse and dependent children under 24) to the permission. Documentary evidence of the marriage and/or birth will be required.

Q6: What is the refund policy if my application is refused?

There is no refund on application fees of €1,500.

Q7: Can I work, study or travel in any other EU member state?

Ireland can only issue permissions for residence in this State. You should check the residence requirements of other EU member states with the relevant immigration authority.

Q8: Can I use the money gifted to me by a parent or other relative for an investment?

Yes, provided it has been obtained legally and can be legally transferred and the applicant can demonstrate a net worth of at least €2m.

Q9: Can I use retained earnings as investment or money coming from funds in a joint account?

Yes, provided you have authority to transfer that money into the proposed investment.

Q10: Where do I submit my completed application?

(i) Applications, including a copy of the original application form and supporting documentation, must be submitted by email to iip&stepapplications@justice.ie

(ii) The subject bar should clearly identify the name of the applicant and project name.

(iii) The original signed application form and proof that the application fee of €1,500 has been transferred to the Department’s account must be forwarded by post to: Investment and Start Up Entrepreneur Programmes, Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service, 13- 14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2, D02 XK70. Due to size limitations on the Department of Justice and Equality internet system, it may take several emails to send all the documentation to INIS. 19

Q11: Do I need to liquidate my assets in my home country before moving to Ireland?

No but you must be in a position to make the investment within 90 days of your pre-approval letter issuing.

Q12: How many investor permissions are available for this program each year?

Currently there is no limit on the number of permissions available.

Q13: Do my school age children need to get a separate student permission?

Currently there is no limit on the number of permissions available.

Q14: Will my children be able to remain in school in Ireland if I leave Ireland?” Yes, provided your permission is still valid.[/su_quote]

Q15: What age can my children still qualify under my residency (only up to age of 18?)

Children under the age of 18 qualify under the IIP applicant’s residency. Children between 18 and 24 will be considered under the programme where they are not married or in a de facto relationship and are attending full time education in Ireland and are still financially dependent upon the investor.

Q16: What type of businesses qualify for immigrant investments?

Any Irish enterprise that is headquartered in Ireland, has the bulk of its operations located in Ireland, where at least 60% of its employees are based in Ireland and at least 60% of its cost base is located in Ireland may qualify for IIP.

Q17: Are any countries excluded from eligibility for the IIP?

There are no countries excluded from the IIP although international sanction agreements to which Ireland is party may apply to some nationalities.

Q18: When do I, as an immigrant investor, commit my investment amount?

Upon receipt of your pre-approval letter from the INIS.

Q19: Are there any minimum net worth requirements for Immigrant Investor Programme?

Yes a personal net worth of €2 million is required. 
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