Based on the information I found here, a Critical Skills Employment Permit is issued for 2 years, and if the holder is still employed at the end of that 2 year period, they can convert the work permit into a Stamp 4, which is valid for a further 2 years and allows the holder to be employed without needing to obtain a permit. At the end of that 2 year period, Stamp 4 can be renewed again, and 1 year into the renewed Stamp 4, the holder will meet the 5 year residency requirement for naturalization (assuming they have not been absent from Ireland for too long).

Suppose I am a skilled worker, but I am tired of working and I just want to immigrate to Ireland, stay employed for the shortest period of time possible, and then retire in Ireland on the savings that I have previously earned while working in the United States (I will not require any welfare from the Irish government). Obviously I will need to work in Ireland for at least 2 years to get the initial Stamp 4, but then what?

  • Will I need to remain employed for an additional 2 years in order to renew Stamp 4 or can it be renewed without regard to employment status? (I could not find any information online about whether or not employment is required for a renewal of Stamp 4.)
  • Will I need to remain employed for all 5 years in order to naturalize? (I don't necessarily need citizenship, but it seems that getting a truly permanent residence permit for a foreigner requires 8 years of residency, so citizenship is faster.)
  • If your desire is simply to retire, why would you seek an employment permit rather than just a residence permit?
    – Sneftel
    Commented Dec 21, 2021 at 10:30
  • @Sneftel is such a residence permit available without having held a work permit?
    – phoog
    Commented May 28, 2022 at 17:08
  • @phoog yes. (It’s not a reward for having worked there. Unsurprisingly, most countries are quite happy for retirees to come spend their retirement savings there.)
    – Sneftel
    Commented May 28, 2022 at 23:34
  • 1
    @Sneftel I'm only aware of a handful of such countries. I am aware of several that do not have such a residence permit.
    – phoog
    Commented May 29, 2022 at 6:21

1 Answer 1

  • You must provide some kind of proof of employment to get/renew Stamp 4. You can be unemployed for a short period of time but you have to have be working most of the previous period.
  • Yes, you need to have been employed to naturalise. (You may skip that only if you are an EU citizen.)

So, the shortest period of time for you will be 5+ years (usually 6+ years because one and half of year is taking to get Irish passport).

  • And by my opinion Ireland is a good country to work, not to retire. It's quite expensive to live and extremely expensive to recreate. Commented Dec 29, 2021 at 12:39
  • (+1) Everything is relative, if you come from one of the most expensive parts of the US, Ireland is still cheap. And if you want a country where English is the main first language, Ireland is arguably cheaper, easier to get too, and generally more welcoming than the UK. If the OP goes for citizenship, they would become an EU citizen, granting them a lot of flexibility to revisit where they want to spend their retirement later on.
    – Relaxed
    Commented Sep 28, 2022 at 6:15

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