visa fee for non traditional family members of EU citizens?

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visa fee for non traditional family members of EU citizens?

Postby rotung » Sun Jan 28, 2007 8:06 pm

Irish embassies seem to sometimes allow family members of EU citizens to get visas for free. Other times they seem to charge for the visas.

Does anyone know of a complete official list of all family members of EU citizens eligible for a free Irish visa?

Have you applied for an Irish visa on the basis of being a non-traditional family member of an EU citizen and not had to pay a fee? When and where did you apply? What was the result? [edited to add a more detailed question]

Any real experience would be appreciated, either as replies to this list or privately to me.

Thank you very much!
Last edited by rotung on Mon Jan 29, 2007 9:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby John » Sun Jan 28, 2007 10:15 pm

EU law says that anyone within the definition of "family member" of an EEA citizen is entitled to apply for free. However our own experience was that whilst the Irish Embassy acknowledged that my wife could apply for free, they insisted that my step-daughter's application would need to be paid for. And I could not get them to budge from that inaccurate view, the result was that neither application was submitted ... and to this day my family have never visited Ireland .... even though we all now have British Passports.

We preferred to spend our tourist Pounds in another country .. one that correctly interpreted EU/EEA law on the subject.

Sooner or later someone will pay the fee and then after their trip will sue the Irish Government for the return of the money inaccurately charged.
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Postby JAJ » Sun Jan 28, 2007 10:37 pm

John wrote:EU law says that anyone within the definition of "family member" of an EEA citizen is entitled to apply for free. However our own experience was that whilst the Irish Embassy acknowledged that my wife could apply for free, they insisted that my step-daughter's application would need to be paid for. And I could not get them to budge from that inaccurate view, the result was that neither application was submitted ... and to this day my family have never visited Ireland .... even though we all now have British Passports.


Northern Ireland is always an option, part of the United Kingdom, so no visa problems.
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Postby rotung » Mon Jan 29, 2007 9:17 pm

John wrote:However our own experience was that whilst the Irish Embassy acknowledged that my wife could apply for free, they insisted that my step-daughter's application would need to be paid for. And I could not get them to budge from that inaccurate view, the result was that neither application was submitted...

Did you apply before April 2006? Which Irish embassy did you talk with?

I have heard at least one version of the current Irish list of free-visas that explicitly includes the "children and grandchildren of the no-EU spouse". But I have not seen it written down on any of their web sites.
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Postby John » Mon Jan 29, 2007 10:22 pm

If the Irish Government has changed their policy ... great! But at the time, about 5 years ago, I was in email correspondence with the Irish Embassy in London, and after getting nowhere with them I started email correspondence with a Ministry in Dublin ... and still got nowhere.

So we gave up and went to France instead.
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Postby JAJ » Tue Jan 30, 2007 4:18 am

John wrote:If the Irish Government has changed their policy ... great! But at the time, about 5 years ago, I was in email correspondence with the Irish Embassy in London, and after getting nowhere with them I started email correspondence with a Ministry in Dublin ... and still got nowhere.


The best I could find is this page which suggests that spouses and "certain family members" of EU-member state citizens may be exempt the visa fee:
http://193.178.1.205/services/visa/08.asp

John - in your case, is your step-daughter adopted by you? If not, would she ever have able to have been classed as a "family member of an EU member state citizen"?
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Postby John » Tue Jan 30, 2007 10:00 am

JAJ, from the EEA/EU regulations that came into force on 30.04.06 (much of which is a repeat from earlier regulations) :-

Family member
7.—(1) Subject to paragraph (2), for the purposes of these Regulations the following persons
shall be treated as the family members of another person—
(a) his spouse or his civil partner;
(b) direct descendants of his, his spouse or his civil partner who are—
(i) under 21; or
(ii) dependants of his, his spouse or his civil partner;
(c) dependent direct relatives in his ascending line or that of his spouse or his civil partner;
(d) a person who is to be treated as the family member of that other person under paragraph (3).
(2) A person shall not be treated under paragraph (1)(b) or (c) as the family member of a student residing in the United Kingdom after the period of three months beginning on the date on which the student is admitted to the United Kingdom unless—
(a) in the case of paragraph (b), the person is the dependent child of the student or of his spouse or civil partner; or
(b) the student also falls within one of the other categories of qualified persons mentioned in regulation 6(1).
(3) Subject to paragraph (4), a person who is an extended family member and has been issued with an EEA family permit, a registration certificate or a residence card shall be treated as the family member of the relevant EEA national for as long as he continues to satisfy the conditions in
regulation 8(2), (3), (4) or (5) in relation to that EEA national and the permit, certificate or card has not ceased to be valid or been revoked.
(4) Where the relevant EEA national is a student, the extended family member shall only be treated as the family member of that national under paragraph (3) if either the EEA family permit was issued under regulation 12(2), the registration certificate was issued under regulation 16(5) or
the residence card was issued under regulation 17(4).


Accordingly the point you make is not valid, given that my wife's children are my family members under the terms of the EEA/EU regulations. That is, notice in 7(1)(b) the inclusion of the words "his spouse".
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Postby JAJ » Wed Jan 31, 2007 5:04 am

John wrote:Accordingly the point you make is not valid, given that my wife's children are my family members under the terms of the EEA/EU regulations. That is, notice in 7(1)(b) the inclusion of the words "his spouse".


And the equivalent Irish legislation, the European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) Regulations 2006 make it clear that:

“qualifying family member”, in relation to a Union citizen, means—
(a) the Union citizen’s spouse,
(b) a direct descendant of the Union citizen who is—
(i) under the age of 21, or
(ii) a dependant of the Union citizen,
(c) a direct descendant of the spouse of the Union citizen who is—
(i) under the age of 21, or
(ii) a dependant of the spouse of the Union citizen,

(d) a dependent direct relative of the Union citizen in the ascending line, or
(e) a dependent direct relative of the spouse of the Union citizen in the ascending line;"


http://www.justice.ie/80256E010039E882/ ... Q6PEJEW-en

There were similar provisions in predecessor legislation, the European Communities (Aliens) Regulations 1977 and the European Communities (Right of Residence for Non-Economically Active Persons) Regulations 1993:
http://www.bailii.org/ie/legis/num_reg/ ... Y1977.html
http://www.bailii.org/ie/legis/num_reg/ ... Y1993.html

So it's not really all that clear why the Irish had such a problem with granting a free visa to your step-daughter. Maybe they just had a difficulty understanding their own laws. Or perhaps a problem with the concept of a slightly "non-traditional" family unit.

In any case, Northern Ireland could have been an alternative.
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