Header Item Written Answers Nos. 1024 - 1041
   Header Item Constitutional Amendments
   Header Item Naturalisation Applications
   Header Item Naturalisation Applications
   Header Item Visa Applications
   Header Item Naturalisation Applications
   Header Item Residency Permits
   Header Item Citizenship Applications
   Header Item Residency Permits
   Header Item Citizenship Applications
   Header Item Naturalisation Applications
   Header Item Garda Operations
   Header Item Citizenship Applications
   Header Item Citizenship Applications
   Header Item Visa Applications
   Header Item Deportation Orders Re-examination

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 813 No. 1
Unrevised

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Written Answers Nos. 1024 - 1041

Constitutional Amendments

 1024. Deputy Andrew Doyle Information on Andrew Doyle Zoom on Andrew Doyle asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if the Thirty-third Amendment of the Constitution (Court of Appeal) Bill 2013 attempts to remove the President of the High Court as an ex-officio member of the Supreme Court; if this is permitted under current constitutional law or if the current President of the High Court's situ on the Supreme Court is secured until the next President of the High Court is appointed after the establishment of the Court of Appeal; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37134/13]

 1025. Deputy Andrew Doyle Information on Andrew Doyle Zoom on Andrew Doyle asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if the Thirty-third Amendment of the Constitution (Court of Appeal) Bill 2013 attempts to remove the President of the High Court as an ex-officio member of the Council of State; if this is permitted under current constitutional law or if the current President of the High Court's situ on the Council of State is secured until the next President of the High Court is appointed after the establishment of the Court of Appeal; if the new President of the Court of Appeal will have a position on the Council of State from the establishment of the Court of Appeal, or from after the current President of the High Court steps down; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37135/13]

 1026. Deputy Andrew Doyle Information on Andrew Doyle Zoom on Andrew Doyle asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if the Thirty-third Amendment of the Constitution (Court of Appeal) Bill 2013 will manage both criminal and civil cases in view of the fact that the Court of Criminal Appeal is still in existence; if he intends to merge the Court of Criminal Appeal into the singular Court of Appeal, if the referendum is ratified by the people; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37136/13]

 1027. Deputy Andrew Doyle Information on Andrew Doyle Zoom on Andrew Doyle asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if the Thirty-third Amendment of the Constitution (Court of Appeal) Bill 2013 intends to deal with the one judgment rule if the President of Ireland should invoke his Article 26 power to refer a Bill from the Oireachtas to the Supreme Court; the views of the Constitution Review Group on this matter; if he will detail the concerns of the Group for not amending the one judgment rule in this particular scenario, as opposed to the change the Amendment will do to Article 34; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37137/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I propose to take Questions Nos. 1024 to 1027, inclusive, together.

The Thirty-third Amendment of the Constitution (Court of Appeal) Bill 2013 was published on 9 July. The Referendum on the Court of Appeal is due to be held on 4 October next. In the event that the Referendum is passed the changes to the Constitution contained in the Bill will take effect in accordance with the provisions in the Bill.

As regards the issues raised by the Deputy, the following is the position:

-The President of the High Court's ex-officio membership of the Supreme Court is provided for in the Courts (Establishment and Constitution) Act 1961 rather than in the Constitution. It is the Government's intention that the President of the High Court will continue to be an ex-officio member of the Supreme Court.

-The Bill does not provide for any change to the President of the High Court's ex-officio membership of the Council of State. Instead, the Bill provides for the amendment of Article 31.2.i to include the President of the Court of Appeal as an additional ex-officio member of the Council of State.

-If the Referendum is passed, there will be one Court of Appeal which will deal with both civil and criminal appeals.

-The Bill provides for the deletion of the one-judgment rule contained in Article 34.4.5. However, the Bill proposes no change to the one-judgment rule contained in Article 26.2.2, where a Bill is referred to the Supreme Court by the President. The provisions in the Bill in this regard are at one with the recommendations of the Constitution Review Group.

Naturalisation Applications

 1028. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the current residency status in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Dublin; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37139/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) that the person referred to by the Deputy currently has permission to remain in the State until 26 July 2015. In addition, the person submitted a valid application for a certificate of naturalisation earlier this year. The application is being processed with a view to establishing whether the applicant meets the statutory conditions for the granting of naturalisation, such as good character and lawful residence, and will be submitted to me for decision as expeditiously as possible. As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation as provided for in law is a major step for the State which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process.

The Deputy may wish to note that queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been established specifically for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Applications

 1029. Deputy Patrick Nulty Information on Patrick Nulty Zoom on Patrick Nulty asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if an application for naturalisation for a person (details supplied) in Dublin 15 will be expedited; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37151/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) that a valid application for a certificate of naturalisation has been received from the person referred to by the Deputy. As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process. While most cases are now generally processed within six months, the nature of the naturalisation process is such that, for a broad range of reasons, some cases will take longer than others to process. In some instances, completing the necessary checks can take a considerable period of time. I am informed that this application is now at an advanced stage of processing and will be submitted to me for decision shortly.

The Deputy may wish to note that queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been established specifically for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Visa Applications

 1030. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the progress to date in respect of determination of an application for permission to remain in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Dublin; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37164/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I refer the Deputy to my replies to Dail Questions No.1235 of 18 September 2012 and No. 660 of 11 June 2013 relating to the person referred to by the Deputy. The person mentioned by the Deputy was first registered in the State as a student on 22 March 2007. Her permission to remain here expired on 26 March 2013 and she no longer has permission to be in the State. The person made an application to INIS on 8 July 2013 seeking permission to remain in the State. A response will issue in the coming weeks. Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up-to-date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy's view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Applications

 1031. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the progress to date in the termination of eligibility for citizenship status in the case of persons (details supplied) in County Dublin; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37165/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I take it the Deputy intends to refer to "a determination of eligibility for citizenship". I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) that valid applications for certificates of naturalisation have been received from the individuals referred to by the Deputy. As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process. While cases are generally now processed within six months, the nature of the naturalisation process is such that, for a broad range of reasons, some cases will take longer than others to process. In some instances, completing the necessary checks can take a considerable period of time. These applications are being processed with a view to establishing whether the applicants meet the statutory conditions for the granting of naturalisation, such as good character and lawful residence, and will be submitted to me for decision as expeditiously as possible.

The Deputy may wish to note that queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been established specifically for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Residency Permits

 1032. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the procedure to be followed in order to make an application for residency in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37167/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter The question of an application for residency in the case of the person whose details were supplied does not arise at this time. Should the option to apply for permission to remain in the State arise in the future the person concerned will be advised accordingly.

Citizenship Applications

 1033. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the progress to date in respect of an application for citizenship in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Kildare; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37172/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) that a valid application for a certificate of naturalisation has been received from the person referred to by the Deputy. As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process. While most cases are generally now processed within six months, the nature of the naturalisation process is such that, for a broad range of reasons, some cases will take longer than others to process. In some instances, completing the necessary checks can take a considerable period of time. I am informed that this application is now at an advanced stage of processing and will be submitted to me for decision shortly.

The Deputy may wish to note that queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been established specifically for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Residency Permits

 1034. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if stamp 4 will be updated and or entitlement to residency be examined in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Meath to facilitate an application for naturalisation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37173/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter There is currently no application pending in my Department for residency in respect of the person whose details were supplied. If an application for asylum has been made by the person concerned, the Deputy will be aware that it is not the practice to comment on such applications pending their final determination.

Citizenship Applications

 1035. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the calculable reckonable residency in the case of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 24 in order to facilitate an application for citizenship; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37174/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter The person concerned was granted permission to remain in the State on 4 August, 1999 under the arrangements then applicable to the non-EEA national parents of Irish born children born in the State before 1 January, 2005. This permission was renewed on a regular basis by the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB). The permission to remain of the person concerned is currently valid until 22 February, 2015. I am informed by the Citizenship Division of the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) that there is no record of an application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person concerned. It is open to any individual to lodge an application for citizenship if and when they are in a position to meet the statutory requirements as prescribed in the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956 as amended. An on-line residency calculator is available on the website www.inis.gov.ie which may be of assistance in establishing if the residency requirements are met.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy's view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Applications

 1036. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the calculable periods of reckonable residency in the case of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 15 in order to facilitate an application for naturalisation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37176/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter Section 15 of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act, 1956, as amended, provides that the Minister may, in his absolute discretion, grant a certificate of naturalisation provided certain statutory conditions are fulfilled. One such condition is that the applicant must have had a period of one year's continuous residency in the State immediately before the date of application and, during the eight years immediately preceding that period, have had a total residence in the State amounting to four years.

An application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person referred to by the Deputy was received in the Citizenship Division of the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) earlier this year. On examination of the application submitted it was determined that the person in question did not meet the statutory residency requirements as set out in the Act and referred to above. The person concerned was informed of this by letter on 20 June, 2013 along with a calculation of his periods of reckonable residence.

It is open to the individual referred to by the Deputy to lodge a further application for citizenship if and when he is in a position to meet the prescribed statutory requirements. The on-line Naturalisation Residency Calculator available on the INIS web-site at www.inis.gov.ie can be used as a guide to whether an individual satisfies the naturalisation residency conditions and, if not, give an indication of how long they should wait before making an application.

The Deputy may wish to note that queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been established specifically for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Garda Operations

 1037. Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if he will provide an update on the case of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 17. [37189/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I am informed by the Garda authorities that the incident referred to occurred within the Coolock Garda Sub-District. Local Garda Management is aware of an incident which occurred in 2002 where a vehicle owned by the person referred to by the deputy was damaged outside the family home. I am further informed that a statement of complaint was made by the person at the time but was later withdrawn. As a result of the withdrawal of the statement no further Garda action was taken. I am advised that following recent inquiries by local Gardaí the position in relation to this matter is unchanged.

Citizenship Applications

 1038. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the progress to date in respect of determination of an application for citizenship in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Kildare; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37191/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I can inform the Deputy that the application has entered the final stage of processing and I intend to grant citizenship. A letter issued to the person referred to by the Deputy asking him to submit the prescribed fee and other documents, which have been received. The person concerned will be invited to attend the next citizenship ceremony at which he will make a declaration of fidelity to the Irish Nation and loyalty to the State and receive his certificate of naturalisation.

The Deputy may wish to note that queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been established specifically for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Citizenship Applications

 1039. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the eligibility for citizenship in the case of persons (details supplied) in County Carlow with particular reference to their employment within this jurisdiction and the long term residency status; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37192/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I have been informed by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) that the first named person was granted Long Term Residency in 2011. Long Term Residency is granted on the basis that a non-EEA national has completed five years (60 months) legal residency in the State on work permit/work authorisation/working visa conditions. Full details of the eligibility criteria for the Long Term Residency scheme can also be found on www.inis.gov.ie.

I am informed that there is no record of an application for a certificate of naturalisation from the persons referred to in the Deputy's question. Section 15 of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956, as amended, provides that the Minister may, in his absolute discretion, grant an application for a certificate of naturalisation provided certain statutory conditions are fulfilled. The conditions are that the applicant must:

- be of full age

- be of good character

- have had a period of one year's continuous residency in the State immediately before the date of application and, during the eight years immediately preceding that period, have had a total residence in the State amounting to four years

- intend in good faith to continue to reside in the State after naturalisation

- have, before a judge of the District Court in open court, in a citizenship ceremony or in such manner as the Minister, for special reasons, allows—

(i) made a declaration, in the prescribed manner, of fidelity to the nation and loyalty to the State, and

(ii) undertaken to faithfully observe the laws of the State and to respect its democratic values.

A foreign national who is married to, or is the Civil Partner of, an Irish citizen for at least three years may apply for naturalisation under section 15A of the Irish Naturalisation and Citizenship Act 1956, as amended, where they have been continuously resident in the island of Ireland for the year immediately prior to the date of their application and for two out of the four years prior to that year. The marriage or civil partnership must be subsisting and recognised under Irish law. Section 15A provides that the Minister may waive certain conditions for naturalisation if satisfied that the applicant would suffer serious consequences in respect of his or her bodily integrity or liberty if not granted Irish citizenship.

Section 16 of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956, as amended, provides that the Minister may, in his absolute discretion, waive some or all of the statutory conditions in certain circumstances i.e. where an applicant is of Irish descent or of Irish associations; where an applicant is a person who is a refugee within the meaning of the United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Refugees; or where an applicant is a Stateless person within the meaning of the United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Stateless persons.

It is open to any individual to lodge an application for citizenship if and when they are in a position to meet the statutory requirements as prescribed in the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956 as amended. An online residency calculator is available on the website www.inis.gov.ie which may be of assistance in establishing if the residency requirements are met.

The Deputy may wish to note that queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been established specifically for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Visa Applications

 1040. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter if consideration will be given to granting permission to remain in the case of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 11; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37194/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter I refer the Deputy to my reply, as follows, to Parliamentary Question No. 24992/13 of the 23 May, 2013. The position is unchanged since then.

The Deputy will be aware, from previous Dáil replies in this matter, that the person referred to by the Deputy has no application pending for residency. The person concerned was granted permission to remain for a period of five years on 12th January, 2010 on the basis of being the spouse of an EU citizen, who was residing in the State and was exercising his EU Treaty Rights.

The grounds under which she was granted permission to remain in the State no longer apply, as her EU spouse is no longer residing in this State. Therefore, the permission to remain which was granted under the provisions of Directive 2004/38/EC and European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) Regulations 2006 and 2008 has now been revoked. The person concerned was notified of this decision on 6th October, 2011.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Deportation Orders Re-examination

 1041. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter the progress to date in determination of eligibility for residency/citizenship in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37195/13]

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter The person concerned is the subject of a Deportation Order, which was signed on the 20 January, 2006, following a thorough and comprehensive examination of her asylum claim and her application to remain temporarily in the State. The effect of the Deportation Order is that the person concerned must leave the State and remain thereafter out of the State and accordingly is not eligible to make an application for residency or citizenship. The enforcement of the Deportation Order remains an operational matter for the Garda National Immigration Bureau.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.


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