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  • Business Permissions

    To contact the Business Permission Unit please see Business Permission Contact Details

    NOTE.  Applications from persons who seek business permission where it is deemed that they are seeking such permission to simply gain entry to the State or where they seek such permission simply to continue their length of stay in the State for whatever reason, such applications will be refused

    Please note that any individual who seeks business permission as a direct result of the revised arrangements/changes and policies governing the green card scheme, work permit arrangements and employment permits announced by the Department of  Enterprise Trade & Employment in April 2009 (see that Department’s  website at ) should not seek such permission unless they can meet the conditions as set out below. This is a very specific scheme and there are no exemptions to the €300,000 minimum investment requirement.

    A non-EEA National who intends to come to Ireland in order to set up a business will need the permission of the Minister for Justice and Equality to do so (‘Business Permission’).

    Non-EEA Nationals who wish to pursue a business activity (in a capacity other than as an employed person for whom an employer would have to obtain a work permit) must first obtain Business Permission.

    Non-EEA nationals applying for business permission must create employment (other than their own) and show a personal investment of €300,000 or more.  PLEASE NOTE: THERE ARE NO EXEMPTIONS TO THE €300,000 MINIMUM INVESTMENT REQUIREMENT.


    A number of categories of non-EEA nationals are exempt from the requirement to obtain Business Permission. The categories are as follows:-

    • persons who have been given refugee status by the Minister for Justice and Equality.
    • dependant relatives of EEA nationals using a valid right to reside in Ireland.
    • persons who have been given permission to stay in the State on one of the following grounds:-
      • persons with permission to stay as the spouse of an Irish national.
      • persons with permission to stay in Ireland on the basis that they are the parent of an Irish born child ( an Irish citizen).
      • persons who have been given temporary permission to stay in the State on compassionate grounds, having been in the asylum system .

    Before submitting an application you should ensure that you can meet the following criteria;-

    1. You must have not less than €300,000 of your own money available to make an investment into business in Ireland. You will have to provode documentary evidence from your financial institution confirming that the funds are available to you.
      If the funds are held in Ireland, the financial institution used by you must be regulated by the Financial Services Authority of Ireland (CBFSAI). The Financial Services Authority of Ireland is the official financial regulatory organisation in Ireland.
    2. the proposed business must create employment for at least two EEA nationals for a new project or, at the very least, keep employment in an existing business;
    3. the proposed business must add to the commercial activity and competitiveness of the State;
    4. the proposed business must be realistic and give the applicant enough income to keep and accommodate themselves and any dependants without using social assistance or paid employment for which a work permit would be required;
    5. The applicant must have a valid passport or national identity document and be of good character.

    You must also submit –

    • Your valid passport or national identity document;
    • Your registration certificate if you are already living in the State;
    • A statement of character from the police authorities of each country in which you have lived for more than six months during the 10 year period prior to your making an application;
    • Business plan which addresses points (1) to (5) above.  This business plan must be supported by a firm of accountants or a financial institution involved in venture finances .
    • You must provide detailed verification of your own aptitude levels to take on such a business including, where applicable, academic qualifications in the specific area , details of training , proof of previous business experience, all qualifications relevant to the proposed business and general experience.
    • References from former employers.
    • Original documentation showing the finances available to put into in the business project must be on the financial institution’s headed paper and have been issued within two months immediately preceding the application. Also, , each letter should confirm that the institution is regulated by the suitable association , your name and the date of the document.
    • Details of where the business will work from, including map description and lease/rental plans.

    Failure to meet any of the points set out above will result in the application being refused.


    Writers, Artists and Crafts persons – while not subject to the capital or employment requirements must demonstrate clearly that they are well known/internationally renowned in their chosen area and are in a position to fully take care of themselves from income from their chosen line of work without making use of employment and/or social assistance. Failure to clearly show this will result in refusal of the application.

    All documents must be submitted to:-      Business Permission Unit, Immigration Services Section,
    Irish Naturalisation & Immigration Service/ Department of Justice and Equality /3rd Floor
    13-14 Burgh Quay,/ Dublin 2.