The Immigration Blog
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The High Court has issued a very important ruling in Shishu & anor -v- The Minister for Justice and Equality  IEHC 566, which provides that the Minister for Justice has incorrectly applied EU law as it relates to the issue of residence cards to dependant family members and members of the same household of an EU citizen who is exercising his or her right to free movement in the State.
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Further to our recent blog on the High Court’s findings in the case of Jones v The Minister for Justice and Equality, which can be read in full here, the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service of the Department of Justice have published a notice addressing the judgment and the concerns it has raised.
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The recent High Court judgment of Mr Justice Barrett in the joined cases of A. vs The Minister for Justice and Equality and S. and S. vs. The Minister for Justice and Equality has held as unconstitutional the statutory provision excluding family reunification rights to the spouses and civil partners of refugees whose marriage took place after the granting of refugee status.
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The Court finds in Jones that the law requires continuous residence in the year prior to application and that continuous residence is defined as per the generally accepted understanding and dictionary definition of continuous. Therefore even one days absence from Ireland in the year prior to application will break the continuous residence requirement and leave a person ineligible to apply for naturalization as an Irish citizen.
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The Regulations direct that the Minister may make a removal order against a Union citizen or their family member where the person is no longer entitled to be in the State in accordance with the 2015 Regulations. However, in practice, the Minister has been invoking the domestic deportation procedure under Section 3 of the Immigration Act 1999 as amended in the circumstances of family members who fall outside the remit of the 2015 Regulations.
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To celebrate 40 years of dipomatic relations with China, Ireland has implemented a a 5-year multi-entry visa option for Chinese applicants. With a large population and strong economy, China plays a significant role in the tourist market in Ireland. With this new visa option, Ireland hopes to increase Chinese tourism.
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According to recent US report, Ireland fails to meet the minimum standards in eliminating human trafficking but is making efforts to do so. Ireland is trying to develop new identification and referral mechanisms for human trafficking victims. However, it still fails to fully comply with the TVPA. The US report claims that Ireland’s efforts in prosecution and victim protection are ‘insufficient’. Since the law was amended in 2013, Ireland has failed to make a conviction in human trafficking. Also, in 2018, authorities failed to initiate any prosecutions in human trafficking, The US report states that Ireland needs to ‘Vigorously investigate, prosecute, and convict suspected offenders of both sex and labor trafficking using the trafficking law.’ Furthermore, Ireland lacks specialized services for human trafficking victims and has no allocated shelters specifically for human trafficking victims.
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In this case the Court asked the question: What is a “durable relationship”? The Court notes: "The phrase is not defined in the Citizens’ Rights Directive, most likely so as to allow the various member states to proceed by reference to concepts of relationships/durability that suit their respective mores and traditions." The Court was critical that the Minister has not tried to define or elaborate on this definition by way of Ministerial guidance. The Court found that an untenable situation has arisen whereby no-one (applicants, officials or indeed the court) quite knows what a “durable relationship” is.