For an applicant applying with no existing immigration permission the application form seeks to collect the information already required i.e. a declaration of no criminal activity. However some documents will be difficult to supply, especially for single parents, for example a sworn affidavit from the other biological parent of the child confirming the role the applicant plays in the child’s life is now required.
For applicants with an existing permission to remain seeking to ‘upgrade’ their immigration permission this represents a major change in policy. Presently such applicants can apply in person by presenting at their local immigration office with their citizen child and the necessary proofs. The INIS have not stated that these new applications will be processed to any timeline. Applications from applicants with no existing permission to remain now take approximately 9 months to be finalised.
The existing administrative framework to deal with residence applications from parents of Irish Citizen Children was introduced as a response to the ‘Zambrano’ decision of the ECJ in March 2011. It will be interesting to see how the INIS deal with new applications over the coming months and whether this new approach represents a change towards a more restrictive policy on the grant of immigration permission.