In 2018, my Department launched a Scheme that was open to non-EEA nationals who held a student permission in the State during the period 1 January 2005 and 31 December 2010. This scheme applied to non-EEA persons who commenced their presence in the State lawfully under a student permission with a limited right to work and who maintained that lawful presence for at least two years.
The scheme permits qualifying persons to remain in the State with a right to work for 2 years on Stamp 4S conditions. After two years, if a person had adhered to the terms of their permission they may be granted a permission to reside in the State for a further year under Stamp 4 conditions.
My Department stopped accepting applications under this scheme on 20 January, 2019.
One of the criteria of this scheme was that the applicant must be able to support themselves without recourse to State funds and be tax compliant.
The access provided to holders of a Stamp 4 to the Irish employment market and the tangible benefits enjoyed by holders of this status are an acknowledgement by the State that, over time, those who migrate to Ireland contribute increasingly to society and the economy and have earned this status and the stability it brings.
A person with a stamp 4 permission can:
- Take up employment and are not required to hold an Employment Permit.
- They can work in a profession, subject to conditions of the relevant professional or other bodies.
- They can establish and operate a business.
- They may access state funds and services as determined by Government departments or agencies.
If a person wishes to stay in Ireland past the expiry date of their immigration permission, they must apply to renew their permission and registration before they expire.
A decision to grant childcare support to a Stamp 4 holder is made by the Government Departments and agencies who administer the childcare support scheme and will be determined by those agencies. If a person with a Stamp 4S permission is approved for the subsidy, this will not negatively impact the requirement under the Student Scheme that the applicant must be able to support themselves without recourse to State funds.