I have talked with many of our readers about the immigration status known as 'Stamp 0'. According to inis.gov.ie it is defined as a "low level immigration status which is not intended to be reckonable for Long Term Residence or Citizenship." The common understanding is that people who retire to Ireland (non-EEA citizens) fall into a category of immigrants who are given this immigration stamp. It does not allow them to work, and they are not allowed to collect any state benefits. The problem that people are having though, is that the information provided online is not enough to base an emigration decision on. People are concerned whether they will meet the criteria to get the stamp in the first place, and if they do, then what will happen to them once they move to Ireland.

To help clarify some of the questions people were having I contacted the justice department with a list of questions. They recently replied, and hopefully some of what they answered back with will be of help to some of you. To give context I put some of the questions I asked in bold below within the response.

All applications are assessed on a case-by-case basis. However, it is expected that the applicant can demonstrate sufficient funds to cover their time in the state with out working either in the State or online. It would also be necessary to demonstrate that the applicant has sufficient funds to ensure that they will not need to access State benefits including Medical care and medical cards.

If the applicant wishes to remain in the state indefinitely then they should be able to show a lump sum sufficient to purchase a property as well as a regular income in the form of a pension payment. If there is no regular income then the person should be able to show a sufficient lump sum to cover the rest of their life in the State including enough resources to pay for elderly nursing home care. Further information on Stamp 0 immigration permission is available here http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/Stamp%200.

Is the 50k per annum requirement assessed yearly?
Yes it is, as we must ensure that the person does not fall into a situation that they will require state benefits.

Could we safely assume that a person with a €500,000 retirement fund would meet the requirement?
Yes depending on their age and what income will be generated from that sum if they are not also in receipt of an income.

The information online also indicates that a letter of permission would indicate if the permission is renewable or not. For someone hoping to retire in Ireland, how could they ensure that would be possible? Dropping everything in their home country, to move to Ireland for one year has less appeal, than being given hope of a renewable visa.
Once their finances are assessed and they meet the financial criteria the are granted permission to reside in the State, however, their permission is given on an annual basis after checking that they continue to meet the criteria.

If the persons believe they fulfil the criteria and wish to reside in the State on these very limited conditions you may make an application in writing to
UNIT 2 Residence Division
Irish Naturalisation & Immigration Service
13-14 Burgh Quay
Dublin 2

The application must include the following
Reason for the request
Full copy of your passport
Any Irish Associations
Evidence of your finances verified by an Irish based accountant listing
yearly income and any financial liabilities. Investment sums are not
normally reckonable – finances must be in the form of pension income or
readily accessible funds.
Evidence of private medical insurance with full cover in private
Police clearance certificate
Health declaration

As many people have commented previously, it seems the Irish government do not necessarily want non-EEA citizens moving to Ireland by way of this immigration status. It certainly does not make things easy for people, and even if you meet the criteria, there are a lot of hoops to jump through to get approval in the first place, and then to continue to maintain your right to reside in Ireland.

I know from speaking with quite a few of you that you would like to buy a home and settle in Ireland. Or at least lay down some sort of roots. How does the information I received impact your plans or thoughts about a retirement in Ireland?

Disclaimer: as noted on numerous other posts on this site, I'd like to point out here that this information is not intended to be taken as official immigration advice. This website offers firsthand information found by those of us who have moved to Ireland, and have something helpful to offer others. Do not base your emigration decisions on information found here. Contact the relevant authority to discuss your own unique situation.