I became a citizen of Ireland through naturalisation on the 9th December 2019, and am going through the process of applying for my first Irish passport.
I used the Passport Online service to start my application. This online process is quite well designed, and it means that I can enter my details, upload my photograph, and pay for the passport using a credit or debit card online. For the photo, I used one taken with my mobile phone, which saved me the cost of getting a photo taken.
At the end of the online process I was given a link to a 4-page document to download and print. It contains instructions for posting in the required documentation, an Identity Verification Form, and a pre-paid postage label.
Identity Verification Form
This form needs to be signed by the passport applicant in the presence of a member of An Garda Siochana, and then the Garda will fill in the rest of the form. They will also make a record of your passport application in a log book that’s kept in the station. The Garda do not charge a fee for filling in this form. However I did need to remember to take along some form of photo ID to prove to the Garda that I am who I say I are. For this I used my Driving License.
Proofs of identity
In order to complete my application I was required to send the following proofs of identity to the passport office:
- Identity Verification Form
- Birth Certificate (original long-form certificate that shows your parents’ names)
- Certificate of Naturalisation (original)
- Photocopy of the front and back of Public Services Card, or the original of a government issued ID such as a national ID card or Driving License
- Passport from country of birth (original)
- Proof of Name (utility bill, bank statement or government letter – internet printouts accepted)
- Proof of Address (utility bill, bank statement or government letter – internet printouts accepted – cannot be the same document as used for the proof of name)
That’s a lot of different ways of proving my identity!
The Identity Verification Form, Certificate of Naturalisation, Public Service Card, and Passport all have my name and photo on them, so it seems a bit over the top to require all four of them – especially when you consider the great lengths I recently went through to prove my identity to get my citizenship!
Posting the application
The Application Cover Page (from the 4-page document you printed) and all of the proofs of identity need to be posted to the Passport Office.
A pre-paid label is provided which needs to be stuck to the envelope – and it means I don’t need to pay for postage. It has an An Post Track and Trace number on it, so that I can check that is has been successfully delivered.
Processing the application
The current processing time for issuing a first-time passport to someone resident in Ireland is listed as 20 working days. This does not include the time that documents are in the post, and is counted from the day that proofs of identity are received by the passport office.