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Becoming Irish
Old 03-16-2017, 10:41 AM   #1
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Becoming Irish

I became an Irish citizen this week! I got the letter today, dated Tuesday. Just in time for St. Patrick's Day, which I will celebrate with something other than Guinness (which I hate).

This is my Brexit plan B (I'm a Brit and I want to continue living in the European Union with all of the rights of an EU citizen), but it's also kind of cool. I didn't have to renounce my British citizenship.

The really cool thing is that you only need one grandparent who was born anywhere in the island of Ireland. Both of my father's parents were born there when all of Ireland was part of the United Kingdom: my grandfather in County Donegal (in what is now in the Republic of Ireland) and my grandmother somewhere in what is now (British) Northern Ireland. I claimed nationality via my grandfather as /a/ it looked a bit better applying for Irish citizenship via someone who was born in the modern country, and /b/ he and I share a middle name, which makes it look more plausible. I decided not to add a note to my application pointing out that when my grandfather moved to England, he was active in the Orange Order and apparently took delight in blackballing any Catholics who applied to join the golf club of which he was a member.

I understand that the US is not keen on dual nationality but that in practice a "don't ask, don't tell" policy applies. So I thought this might be useful for anyone of Irish descent who is thinking of retiring to Europe.
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Old 03-16-2017, 10:49 AM   #2
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Congratulations!

Do you know if great-great or great-great-great grandparents count? I think I have one back in the family tree somewhere.
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:00 AM   #3
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Nope, grandparents (or parents) only.

However, I believe that having a third cousin once removed whose plane got diverted to Shannon once is enough to qualify to take part in certain towns' St. Patrick's Day parades.
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:04 AM   #4
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Congratulations!
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:25 AM   #5
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Nope, grandparents (or parents) only.
Too bad.

Congratulations to you.
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:36 AM   #6
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My DIL has dual citizenship and lives in the US. I don't think it is discouraged here.
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:41 AM   #7
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My DIL has dual citizenship and lives in the US. I don't think it is discouraged here.

+1

Almost everyone in my immediate family has a dual citizenship and we never had any issues.

I noticed that recently we were asked about citizenships when creating an account. I think it was for some of the high yield savings accounts we opened. That was new. Before that, nobody ever asked.
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Old 03-16-2017, 01:20 PM   #8
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I always thought everybody was Irish on St Paddys Day? What are they checking passports/birth certificates now?
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Old 03-16-2017, 03:45 PM   #9
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I have an EU (British) passport and am now also a US citizen. The US always allowed dual citizenship, it was usually the origin countries that got bent out of shape. When we first moved here, the UK required you to renounce citizenship if you took up elsewhere. (80's 90's etc.) But now they let you keep both.

But anyway, congrats! Does the citizenship have any requirements about residency or just, you're Irish enough come and go as you please?
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Old 03-16-2017, 04:25 PM   #10
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I just looked up the Naturalization Oath of Allegiance of the US. Nothing explicit here about maintaining your native citizenship, but in the case of wars, you have already chosen side. That's my understanding.

"I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God."
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Old 03-16-2017, 04:31 PM   #11
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You can have dual citizenship except when you need top clearance. But somebody told me they were able to, so who knows?
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Old 03-16-2017, 04:43 PM   #12
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I am submitting my application for Irish citizenship tomorrow. All of my grandparents were born in Ireland. I rely on the ACA for health insurance during ER. I was diagnosed with cancer, so I can't take risks with health insurance and access to health care. Ireland has universal health care. So if the ACA goes, then I have to go.

Can you think of any other alternatives I may have, if I want to try and stay in the US after the elimination of the ACA? I can't go back to work, I am allergic to it lol.
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Old 03-16-2017, 04:48 PM   #13
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Congratulations BigNick!!

The USA has no issues with dual citizenship, there is even a section about it in my US passport. Basically, you cannot expect help from a US embassy while in a country of which you are also a citizen, and you can be conscripted into the military of either country in which you are resident.
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Old 03-16-2017, 04:49 PM   #14
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I am submitting my application for Irish citizenship tomorrow. All of my grandparents were born in Ireland. I rely on the ACA for health insurance during ER. I was diagnosed with cancer, so I can't take risks with health insurance and access to health care. Ireland has universal health care. So if the ACA goes, then I have to go.

Can you think of any other alternatives I may have, if I want to try and stay in the US after the elimination of the ACA? I can't go back to work, I am allergic to it lol.
Ireland has basic health care for all citizens resident there, but I would strongly advise you to buy private insurance as well.
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Old 03-16-2017, 04:59 PM   #15
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Ireland has basic health care for all citizens resident there, but I would strongly advise you to buy private insurance as well.
Private Health insurance companies may very well not cover pre-existing conditions, in fact I doubt a person in Ireland can turn around and sign up for HI as soon as they get diagnosed with cancer.

Of course I don't actually know, just going on what I've found to be the case in the UK.
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:06 PM   #16
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Congrats, Big Nick. That's a wonderful perk you have there.

I looked into it a number of years ago, but only my great-grandmother was actually born in Ireland and I seriously doubt she ever recorded the birth of my grandmother on the Foreign Birth Register, so I'm out of luck.

Still, my mother's side of the family is 100% Irish so I have a warm feeling toward the Emerald Isle.
But my father's side is 100% German, so the same applies there.
Fortunately, both sides are compatible with a pint or a liter of good beer, so there's no problem.

As to dual citizenship, when I was in the military I had a good friend who had been born in Cuba and he had a TS clearance so that wasn't a problem.
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:15 PM   #17
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Private Health insurance companies may very well not cover pre-existing conditions, in fact I doubt a person in Ireland can turn around and sign up for HI as soon as they get diagnosed with cancer.

Of course I don't actually know, just going on what I've found to be the case in the UK.
Private health insurance in Ireland is regulated. As far as I know there are no exclusions for predicting conditions, though there may be a waiting period for coverage of preexisting conditions. The policy you choose is based on the services you would like to have covered, such as a private room, specialty hospital, etc.

This might be a good place to start:

Private health insurance

From the website:

"Open enrolment
At present, health insurance companies must accept anyone who wishes to join, subject to any applicable waiting periods before cover takes effect, regardless of age, sex or health status - this is known as "open enrolment". Restricted membership schemes must accept everyone who is qualified to join."

VHI is the oldest health insurance company in Ireland. Check out their website and play with the policy selection tool. I'm very familiar with VHI because this is the insurance my parents had (plan B), and boy did they get their money's worth out of it in their later years!

https://www.vhi.ie/home
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:41 PM   #18
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I having romantic musing of living in Ireland as I have a high percentage of Irish ancestry, but family lore and long held religious allegiance on this side of the pond would suggest I am Ulster Scot or Scots-Irish as its known in the Southern States.

One item on my wife's bucket list is to visit Ireland even though she is about 1/2 Scandinavian (Norwegian/Swede via Minnesota) and not Irish at all that we are aware of. But historian suggest there was a great deal of DNA swapping between Irish lasses and Scandinavian "visitors" about a 1000 years ago give or take 200 years, and she does have red hair, as did I when I was younger.

My wife and I have considered eventually buying a summer home in a cooler climate compared to our native Texas. Ireland would certainly meet that criteria, but my Irish ancestors (Scots-Irish or other wish) came over a few hundreds years ago, so the grandparent provision won't work for me. I would have to find another way to gain approval to immigrant and perhaps own a small cottage in the country-side....once again, part of my romantic musings.
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:57 PM   #19
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and you can be conscripted into the military of either country in which you are resident.
That's one of the benefits of being old - a country would have to be pretty desperate to want us oldies in their military

I have one grandparent who was born in Ireland, and have thought about Irish citizenship. It's certainly good to have options.

Congratulations BigNick!
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:59 PM   #20
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historian suggest there was a great deal of DNA swapping between Irish lasses and Scandinavian "visitors" about a 1000 years ago .
Visit Iceland sometime. Between the Norse colonizers and the Irish monk proselytizers, the country is full of blondes with freckles. Beautiful people.
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