Tracing Your AncestorsIrish CitizenshipRecord Searches

Simplified Criteria

The following is a simplified explanation of the criteria for qualification for Irish citizenship by descent – for full explanatory article click here.

FATHER OR MOTHER BORN IN IRELAND

A person whose father or mother was born in Ireland is automatically an Irish citizen. They may apply to the Passport Office for an Irish passport and will need to produce the following documentation:

GRANDPARENT BORN IN IRELAND

A person (of non-Irish born parents) whose grandfather or grandmother was born in Ireland may become an Irish citizen by registering in the Foreign Births Register (FBR) at an Irish Embassy or Consular Office or at the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin. The applicant will need to produce the following documentation:

GREAT-GRANDPARENT BORN IN IRELAND

It is also possible for a person to obtain an entitlement to Irish citizenship through an Irish-born great-grandparent or indeed a more distant Irish-born ancestor, where the emigrant Irish family has maintained their citizenship link through registration of successive generations in the Foreign Births Register. This link can be broken where registration of an individual’s birth in the FBR takes place after the birth of their own child - the child may lose entitlement under the provisions of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1986.

For further information on Irish citizenship and Irish passports see the website of the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service at www.inis.gov.ie

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