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IELTS score to work in Ireland and get PR - IR1 - SEA

Known for its verdant rolling green hills, quaint villages and endearing quirks, Ireland is one of the world’s best destinations to pursue a career and settle in.

If you are looking for exciting job opportunities or a dynamic culture that will embrace you, Ireland might be the right choice or even your ‘forever home’!

To work in Ireland and obtain permanent residency there, proving your proficiency in the English language with IELTS and attaining the necessary band score for the required visa is an essential step.

The pathways to work in Ireland and obtain a PR

There are a few routes that you can take to get a PR in Ireland. But regardless of your approach to permanent residency, you must reside legally and have worked in Ireland on employment permit conditions for at least 5 years or 60 months.

One way is by studying for your degree or English language at an Irish university as an international student. This means obtaining a Stamp 2 visa in your passport.

Upon graduation as the first step towards long term residency, you can apply for a post study work permitto remain in Ireland for up to 2 years and find suitable employment.

The other route is through obtaining either one of the qualifying stamps: Stamp 1 or Stamp 4 permissions.

Each stamp you receive in your passport serves as an immigration permission, denoting what you can do and length of stay in Ireland, with conditions that apply. For instance, you will need to have an existing work authorisation issued by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, such as the General Employment Permit required for Stamp 1, and the Critical Skills Employment Permit required for Stamp 4.

IELTS score to work in Ireland and get PR - IR2 - SEA

IELTS scores to work and attain Ireland PR in 2024

1. Study visa route

To embark on the study route to obtain PR, you will have to get a study visa by meeting the minimum English language requirement.

This will mean obtaining an overall IELTS band score of 5.0 on the academic test. It is also recommended to attain the highest score possible as most universities in Ireland require youto obtain an overall score of 6.0 or 6.5 and above.

For example:

  • Trinity College Dublin: IELTS overall band score of 6.5

  • Technological University Dublin: IELTS overall band score of 6.0

  • University of Limerick: IELTS overall band score of 6.5

2. Critical Skills Employment Permit

Catering to jobs that require critical skills, including ICT professionals, professional engineers and technologists, the Critical Skills Employment Permit doesn’t explicitly state the necessary IELTS band score you have to attain to prove your English proficiency.

However, there are other eligibility criteria to note as a prospective employee, where your employer might require you to validate your English proficiency with an IELTS test.

These include:

  • A minimum annual salary of €38,000 for a restricted number of Critical Skills Occupations as well as a relevant degree qualification

  • All occupations with a minimum annual remuneration of over €64,000 that aren’t on the ineligible list

  • Securing a 2-year job offer

While an IELTS score isn’t a requirement, it is still recommended to sit for the test and attain a high band score for the general test as part of the application. This could help to boost your chances for employment by proving your level of English is suitable for general living, working and daily interaction in Ireland.

3. General employment work permit

While there are no restrictions on occupations needed to qualify for this permit, it would be advantageous to be in a role on the Critical Skills Occupation List, which includes medical practitioners, ICT and engineering professionals.

Similarly, the General Employment Permit doesn’t explicitly state the necessary IELTS band score you have to attain to prove your English proficiency.

As a prospective employee, there are other eligibility requirements to ascertain, where your employer might require your English language test results like IELTS.

These include:

  • A minimum annual salary of €34,000

  • A job offer from an employer registered with the Revenue Commissioners

  • Proposed employment falls in a job category outside of the ineligible list

While an IELTS score isn’t a requirement, it is still recommended to sit for the test and attain a high band score for the general test as part of the application. This could help to boost your chances for employment by proving your level of English is suitable for general living, working and daily interaction in Ireland.

4. Sport and Cultural Employment Permit

This permit is designed to allow foreign nationals with the relevant qualifications, skills and experience in sporting and cultural activities to work in Ireland.

While the Sport and Cultural Employment Permit doesn’t have any explicit language proficiency requirements, there are still other criteria that you must take note of.

These include:

  • Having at least a national minimum wage salary or higher

  • Working for an employer that is registered with the Revenue Commissioners

  • Possessing the necessary skills, qualifications and experience required for your employment position

While taking the IELTS test isn’t a requirement, it is still recommended to sit for it and attain the best possible band score to improve your chances in the application process, and as a way to prove your English proficiency. More information on employment permits can be found on Ireland’s Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment website .

IELTS score to work in Ireland and get PR - IR3 - SEA

Pursue your career and PR in Ireland with IDP

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