My wife is transferring with her current employer for two years to Ireland on a Critical Skills work permit. I will be going with her and plan on continuing to work my current US job remotely from Ireland. I am a software developer for a small US business with no foreign presence.

It seems to me that a Work Permit is not applicable in this case since I will not be working for an Irish company.

  • 5
    Generally, the permit is to work in a country, not for a local business. Without specific knowledge of the Irish law, it seems highly unlikely that a work permit is in fact not applicable in this situation. You'll be working in that country - you should have a legal authorization to work. When thinking of other countries, ask yourself: How does it work in the US in this situation? Then, assume in the foreign country it works the same way. In most cases - it does.
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 6:32
  • Section 2 (page 7) of djei.ie/publications/labour/2006/emppermitsact2006.pdf makes it look like you would need a permit. I haven't been able to find a permit that covers an employer not registered in Ireland, though.
    – Dan Getz
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 11:58
  • You probably need a permit anyway but it might indeed be difficult to get one without a local sponsor or any intent to find employment locally. Is there any chance your wife could sponsor you instead? Many family-member visas do allow the holder to work.
    – Gala
    Commented Mar 15, 2015 at 8:19
  • Unfortunately it seems my idea won't work.
    – Gala
    Commented Mar 15, 2015 at 9:35

2 Answers 2


If the deliverables are provided to a location outside the EU, and the invoicing is done in a location outside the EU, by a legal entity based outside the EU, then it may be possible.

(Somewhat analogous to Amazon taking orders on a .co.uk site from a UK resident, for items which are then delivered to a UK location from a UK warehouse, and then claiming that because the invoice processing happens in Luxembourg, the work itself happened in Luxembourg).

You could then receive unearned income (share dividends, etc) from the company that invoiced the client.

You will need to clear this with legal or accountancy professionals with specific experience of the Irish jurisdiction.

There have been recent changes to EU regulations for remote work delivered electronically without substantial human involvement to non-business end-customers within the EU - the VATMOSS regulations - but you are the opposite case. Your clients are businesses, and they are outwith the EU.


If you are an employee for the US business, you will have to plan where you get paid, pay taxes and have social security withheld while you are working in Ireland. You may be planning to stay on the US payroll as usual, and just find a way to transfer money to Ireland from a US account if you have one. But there may be some issues with this, which includes the work permit requirement, and that a 'remote payroll' may not be permitted in Ireland.


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