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Habitual Residence

If you require assistance with completing and submitting the habitual residence form, please don’t hesitate to reach out. The application process can be quite overwhelming, as decision-makers often request a substantial number of documents and have been known to reject numerous applications. We can ensure that your submission is accurately and effectively handled right from the start.

What is the meaning of “habitually resident”?
The term “habitually resident” lacks a specific definition in Irish law. In practical terms, it implies having a well-established and undeniable connection to Ireland. Additionally, it signifies a sense of permanence, indicating that an individual has spent a considerable amount of time in Ireland and intends to remain here for the foreseeable future. Demonstrating habitual residence relies heavily on factual evidence. If you have spent your entire life in Ireland, proving compliance with the factors indicating habitual residence should likely present no challenges – refer to the list below.
It’s important to note that the habitual residence condition does not apply to your spouse, civil partner, cohabitant, or dependent children. When applying for a social welfare payment, only you, as the applicant, need to meet the requirements of the habitual residence condition.
The Department of Social Protection has issued comprehensive Operational Guidelines relating to the habitual residence condition, often referred to as the HRC.
At the time of submitting your application, you must already be habitually resident within the State, and this status must be maintained after the application process. This provision was introduced through the Social Welfare and Pensions Act 2014, which took effect on 17 July 2014. Before this date, the habitual residence condition was only assessed at the time of application.

Since 17 July 2014, the decision regarding the HRC in your case may be reevaluated if there are relevant changes in circumstances (such as loss of residency rights) or if you have been absent from the State for an extended period.
Once your right to reside has been established, the following five factors (as outlined in both Irish and European law) are examined to determine your habitual residence in Ireland:
• Duration and consistency of residence in Ireland
• Length and purpose of any periods spent outside of Ireland
• Nature and pattern of employment
• Primary centre of interest
• Your future intentions to reside in Ireland, as evidenced
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