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Anyone born outside Ireland who, at the time of their birth, had a parent who was an Irish citizen, otherwise than by birth in Ireland, may become an Irish citizen by application for Foreign Birth Registration

FAQs: Irish Citizenship

  • Processing time is approximately 4 months
  • All certificates must be original. Photocopies or certified photocopies cannot be accepted
  • A New Zealand civil marriage certificate will have no handwriting. Handwritten New Zealand marriage documents will not be accepted
  • A Justice of the Peace is an approved professional, in addition to the seven (7) listed on the printed application form, who can act as your witness in New Zealand. Remember that you must be known to your witness either personally or professionally.
  • When applying on behalf of a minor the photos of the minor and of the parent must be signed by both the parent and the witness. Therefore, the parent and the witness are signing four (4) photos for each application for a minor
  • A check list of ‘Documentary Requirements’ will print with the application form after your have entered the details online. Everything on the check list must be submitted to make a complete application

Am I eligible to apply for Irish citizenship?
Anyone born outside Ireland who, at the time of their birth had a parent, who was an Irish Citizen, otherwise than by birth in Ireland, may become an Irish Citizen by application for Foreign Birth Registration (FBR).

What if one (or both) of my parents were born in Ireland?
Then you acquired Irish citizenship automatically at birth.

May I apply through an Irish born grandparent?
Yes. If one of your grandparents was born in the island of Ireland, their child (your parent) acquired Irish citizenship automatically at birth. Therefore, unless your parent renounced their Irish citizenship before your birth, you are eligible to apply.

Is anyone else eligible to apply for Foreign Birth Registration (FBR)?
Eligibility is not limited to grandchildren of people born in Ireland. The criteria is that at the time of your birth one of your parents held Irish citizenship other than through birth in Ireland. The FBR process is therefore also available to the foreign-born children of naturalised Irish citizens, and to children born to Irish citizens who themselves acquired citizenship through FBR.

What if my parent became an Irish citizen after I was born?
It is not possible to apply on the basis that your parent acquired Irish citizenship after your birth, except in the very limited circumstance that your parent became a citizen through FBR on or before 31 December 1986 and you were born after 17 July 1956. This arises from previous legislation. Current legislation only provides for persons who, at the time of their birth, had a parent who held Irish citizenship other than by birth in Ireland.

How may I apply for Irish citizenship by Foreign Birth Registration?
Applications begin online and must be made via Dept of Foreign Affairs Irish Citizenship Applications

What is the cost to apply for Foreign Birth Registration?
Application fee for adult (aged over 18 years) FBR is NZ$450
Application fee for minor (aged under 18 years) FBR is NZ$250

FBR fees can be paid by credit card via our website, or by personal cheque or bank cheque.
If you come into our office you can pay by cash or EFTPOS.

Please remember, if paying online, to include a copy of your receipt or write the receipt number on your application.

How long does it take to process an application for Irish citizenship?
It currently takes approximately four months to process FBR applications at this mission, if all necessary documentation is provided. If we have to seek additional documents, the processing time may be longer.

Applications on behalf of a minor should be submitted at least four months before the minor turns 18 years old.

No travel arrangements should be made on the assumption of having Irish citizenship and then passport by a certain future date. Once you have been notified that your FBR application is successful, you may apply for an Irish passport.

You said that the supporting documents have to be originals but I don’t have the originals of some certificate what should I do?
When we say original documentation we mean that the document should be from the competent issuing authority –(ie not a photocopy, even if certified). You can obtain a new original from the competent authority.

Certificates from the Republic of Ireland can be obtained from General Register Office.

Certificates from Northern Ireland can be obtained from General Register Office Northern Ireland.

Did you know...

The North Island, South Island and Stewart Island were originally named New Ulster, New Munster and New Leinster respectively

Sir Tristram, born in Co Kildare, was a champion broodmare sire (45 group one winners, including 3 Melbourne Cup winners) and lived in Cambridge Stud

Mary Gallagher, of whom the song ‘Mary from Dungloe’ was written, emigrated to NZ from Co Donegal and is buried in Gisborne cemetery

Robert Hannah, born in Co Antrim, founded ‘Hannah’s Shoes’. He built and lived in Antrim House, in Wellington, now the headquarters of the NZ Historic Places Trust

Thomas Bracken, born in Co Monaghan, wrote the words of the national anthem ‘God Defend New Zealand’

Johnny Martin, born in Co Derry, was a goldminer and entrepreneur who developed the area of Martinborough

Joseph McMullen Dargaville, born in Co Cork, developed the town of Dargaville as part of his kauri timber and gum business

Robert Wellwood, born in Co Kilkenny, was the first Mayor of Hastings

Thomas Russell, born in Cork, was the founder of Bank of New Zealand in 1861

Thomas Croke, born in Cork and after whom the GAA Croke Park is named, was Roman Catholic Bishop of Auckland from 1870-1874

Patrick Moran, born in Co Wicklow, was the Roman Catholic Bishop of Dunedin 1869-1895

Henry Blundell, born in Dublin, began publishing the Wellington Evening Post (now the Dominion Post) in 1865

Dave Gallaher, captain of the 1905 Original All Blacks, was born in Co Donegal

Three of NZs Prime Ministers were born in Ireland – Daniel Pollen (Dublin), John Balance (Antrim) and William Massey (Derry)

New Zealand’s most colourful goldminer, Biddy of the Buller, was born in Dublin

Lt. Governor William Hobson, who signed the Treaty of Waitangi on behalf of the Crown, was born in Waterford, the home of Waterford Crystal.

James Joyce, the author of Ulysses, the novel of the 20th century, had a sister, who was a nun who lived in New Zealand for many years until her death in 1942.

The Duke of Wellington, after whom New Zealand’s capital city is named, was born in Dublin, Ireland’s capital.