Immigration Updates

An important message for undocumented workers in Ireland

This post is from 2017. Read an updated version from August 2019 here:

Justice for the Undocumented is fighting for a fair and pragmatic regularisation scheme for undocumented migrants in Ireland, but in the meantime it is vital that you know your rights.

If you are a worker in Ireland, your workplace may be inspected by officials from the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC), the GNIB, Revenue and/or Social Welfare.

If your workplace has been inspected and you are concerned about your immigration status you can get free and confidential information and advice from our Drop-In Centre ( Remember, even if you are undocumented you have rights.

As a worker, even if you are undocumented you still have FULL labour rights - this includes, for example, the right to minimum wage and paid notice if your employment is terminated. Again, if in doubt consult MRCI.

If you are undocumented and have been recently in contact with the Gardaí (police) following an investigation at your workplace or elsewhere, please remember the following:

  • You have to provide them with an address
  • It is important that you reside in that address.  Failure to do so, can result in your future arrest.
  • There is NO SUMMARY DEPORTATION (being picked up and put in a plane) in Ireland. This means that no one can send you away from Ireland before following a legal process.
  • You might be put on a what is called a section 14(1) notice. This requires that you live at a certain address and you report to a Garda station at a given time and date. Do not ignore this, remember to sign on or you will be in breach of your order. If you need assistance with amending this order (you move for example) you can speak you us about this.
  • You may then be issued with a letter, usually called a Section 3 Letter. DO NOT IGNORE THIS LETTER. If you receive such a letter, please contact MRCI at 37 Dame St, Dublin 2 without delay.
  • This letter, gives you 3 options: a) To consent to deportation b) To apply for Leave to Remain on Humanitarian grounds and c) To return voluntarily to your country of origin.
  • Remember that it is your entitlement to apply for Leave to Remain on Humanitarian grounds. We strongly recommend you consult with us before making a decision, so that we can make sure you have everything you need to make an informed choice in relation to making an application to the  Minister for Justice.
  • It is important to remember that being granted Leave to Remain on Humanitarian grounds is limited and not all applications are successful. Again, MRCI can advise on the merits of you case to help you make an informed decision.
  • It is extremely advisable to get legal representation to assist with an application for Leave to Remain if you wish to proceed. We can advise you of solicitors to assist you.

If you hold a deportation order and have been recently in contact with the police following an investigation at your workplace or other place, please remember the following:

  • You may have been issued a deportation order in the past without your knowledge. This may be for a number of reasons; you could have failed to respond to a correspondence, this could be as a result of changing your address or post not reaching you.
  • It is very hard to overturn a deportation order as this requires extensive legal work. In any case we recommend you seek advice from MRCI at 13 Lower Dorset St, Dublin 1.
  • Once you have been issued a deportation order, you are required to comply to certain terms, these include residing at one single address and notifying the authorities of any change. If you fail to do so, you will be categorised as evading a deportation order and be liable for arrest.
  • If you are arrested and detained, remember that you are entitled to an interpreter and a phone call.You are also entitled to engage a solicitor at your own cost.
  • The maximum length of detention is 8 weeks, after which if they fail to enforce your deportation they should release you. If you are released you should comply with the terms and conditions stipulated – namely residing at the given address and reporting upon request.

Justice for the Undocumented is a campaign made up of over 1,400 undocumented people fighting for their rights and the rights of all undocumented migrants.