‘Unworkable’ High Court finding on citizenship applications overturned

Photograph: Chris Maddaloni/Collins

 

Controversial decision last May caused huge uncertainty concerning applications

An “unworkable” and “unduly rigid” High Court finding that applicants for Irish citizenship must have “unbroken” residence here in the year before they apply has been overturned on appeal.

The Court of Appeal also ruled that the Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan’s approach to the one year’s continuous residence requirement of permitting citizenship applicants to be six weeks out of the country, and more in some circumstances, in the year before they apply, is “reasonable” and not rigid, inflexible or unlawful.

The Minister’s approach facilitates “flexibility, clarity and certainty” in operating the relevant law – section 15.1.c of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 2015 – and assists applicants in establishing with certainty how the criterion of “one year’s continuous residence” in the State is to be satisfied for naturalisation purposes” it said.

Having applied that policy, the Minister was entitled in 2018 to refuse a citizenship application by an Australian man, Roderick Jones, it ruled. There is no limit to the number of such applications Mr Jones can bring, it noted

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