INIS Update: Replacement of the GNIB card with the Irish Residence Permit

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The following is an information note from the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS)

Non-EEA nationals who are resident in Ireland for more than 90 days are required to have a permission to stay and to register this permission at a Registration Office. Upon registration, their passport is endorsed with the relevant Stamp (eg Stamp 2 for students) and they are issued with a registration certificate.

The registration certificate up until now has been commonly known as the GNIB (Garda National Immigration Bureau) card. A new card is being introduced on 11 December 2017, which will be know as the Irish Residence Permit, or IRP.

This card will be posted to customers, and should be circulation by the week of 18 December 2017.

GNIB cards will remain valid until their expiry date, and will only be replaced with an IRP card if the holder's registration is renewed. Holders of GNIB cards do not need to change their card for an IRP card while the GNIB card is still valid.


IRP design

The IRP follows a common EU design, the European Union Residence Permit, or EURP. While the design is common with other EU Member States, the IRP will not grant any rights to enter or reside in any other Member State.

The IRP is a credit card sized polycarbonate card, which contains the holder's personal information on both the front and back, including a photo.

irish residence permit

Uses of the IRP

The function of the IRP is the same as the GNIB card - it shows that the holder has registered their permission to be in the State as required by the Immigration Act 2004. The IRP, along with the Stamp in their passport, confirms that the individual has a right to reside in the State. The IRP includes a brief description on of the rights associated with the Stamp held eg permission to study, permission to work etc.

As with the GNIB card, the IRP card is not an identify card and should not be used to verify the holder's identity for access to State services- the holders passport is their identity document while in the State.


Issuing IRP cards to applicants

The Burgh Quay Registration Office is operated by INIS and processes applications from non-EEA nationals living in Dublin city and county, while An Garda Síochána are responsible for registrations in the rest of the country.

INIS issued GNIB cards to applicants at the time of registration. IRP cards will instead be posted to successful applicants, within 10 working days of their appointment in the Burgh Quay Registration Office. The applicant's passport will be stamped at the time of their appointment, and the Stamp in their passport can be taken as proof of registration while an applicant waits for the IRP to arrive. If there is any question as to whether the Stamp is legitimate, Burgh Quay Registration Office staff can check the database to confirm if a registration was completed.

Applicants in Registration Offices operated An Garda Síochána collected their GNIB cards from the Garda Registration Office within one or two weeks of the original appointment. Their passports were stamped when they returned to collect their card. The same procedure will be used for the IRP card - applicants will return to their local Registration Office to collect their IRP card and their passport will be stamped during this return appointment.

If you have any queries, please email

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