What is the change?  Ireland has introduced a new application process for non-EU/EEA nurses who have a contract to work in Ireland.

What does the change mean? Effective immediately, non-EU/EEA nurses will be required to follow a process that includes (1) applying for entry under the Atypical Working Scheme, (2) completing a mandatory aptitude test or clinical assessment program, (3) registering with Ireland’s professional nursing board and receiving a personal identification number, (4) obtaining an employment permit through their employer and (5) registering with the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate and ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Work authorization issued under the Atypical Working Scheme.
  • Who is affected: Non-EU/EEA nurses and their employers. The requirements also apply to EU-trained nurses who are not entitled to direct registration under the EU Directive 2005/36/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council.
  • Next steps: Additional information is available on this INIS site.

Background: INIS recently released updated immigration requirements for non-EU/EEA nurses looking to work in Ireland. Such applicants who must follow the following process:

  • Apply for entry to Ireland under the Atypical Working Scheme. This involves completing the application form, providing all required documentation, having an employment contract that is valid for at least two years, having a passport that is valid for the duration of the contract and paying a nonrefundable fee of € 250 at the time of application. Successful applicants will be issued an approval letter that is valid for six months.
  • Complete the required aptitude test or training program. Once in Ireland, non-EU/EEA nurses must complete an approved Clinical Adaptation and Assessment Program or Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland aptitude test.
  • Complete professional registration processes and obtain a personal identification number. Upon satisfactorily completing their test or training program, non-EU/EEA nurses must register with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland, which will provide the nurses with a personal identification number.
  • Obtain an employment permit through their employer. At this stage, the nurses’ employers are responsible for submitting employment permit applications. Applicants are not permitted to change their employer or the location of their employment during the validity period of their employment contract.
  • Register with INIS. Once an employment permit is issued, nurses must register with INIS.

BAL Analysis: Employers who hire non-EU/EEA nurses should be sure that the nurses follow the procedures outlined above. Failure to do so may delay start dates or, in the worst-case scenario, leave nurses ineligible to work in Ireland. BAL is able to assist throughout the process.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact

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