Skip to content

Ireland Country
Guide 2024

Find everything you need for confident contracting and working in Ireland: labour law, taxation, employment compliance, payroll, benefits, and more.


Ireland is an island in Northwestern Europe, and it is an international hub with a beautiful countryside and bustling cities, but the general weather conditions tend to be on the wet and dreary side. Ireland has very accessible healthcare, abundant public transport, and it recognizes the ability to hold a dual citizenship.

The cost of living in Ireland is pretty steep, especially in the city centres, and living nearer the countryside limits the options for public transport; in addition, job prospects outside of Dublin can be hard to find. The social scene in Ireland is lively, but it does tend to revolve around pubs; however, Ireland is also home to an abundance of nature and wildlife, with scenery ranging from cliffs to beaches and national parks.

  • Capital: Dublin
  • Spoken Languages: Irish, English
  • Currency: Euro (EUR)
  • Minimum monthly wage: EUR 1,808.00 (Gross)

Entry Visa

Citizens of EU/EFTA Member States and Switzerland can enter Ireland with an identity card or a valid passport; other foreign citizens need a visa.

Work Permit / Residence Permit

Citizens of EU/EFTA Member States and Switzerland can live and work without a work or residence permit in Ireland.

Other foreign nationals must acquire a Work Permit, and a Work Visa (long stay (D) visa). The application for a work permit is done online through EPOS (the Employment Permits Online System), and can be done by either the employer or the employee. In order for the work visa to be approved, the employer must pass a labour market test, to ensure that there are no EU/EAA/Swiss nationals that are qualified for the job, and the salary must be at least 30,000 per year; there are also certain occupations that fall under critical skills, in which case a labour market test is not required but the annual salary must be from 30,000 – 80,000 depending on the job.

After the work permit has been received, the employee must apply for the work visa, which is also done online via AVATS (Irish online visa application facility). The work visa allows the individual to enter Ireland, but it is temporary; after arriving, the individual must register with immigration and receive an Ireland residence permit within the first 90 days. The residence permit is usually valid for at least 2 years initially, but it can be renewed.

Social Security Registration

Registration to Social Security can be done online; the individual will receive a Personal Public Service number (PPS), which will help them access social welfare benefits, public services and information in Ireland.

Working Hours

A standard working week in Ireland is 8 hours per day, 5 days per week. The average weekly working hours, including overtime, may not exceed 48 hours over a reference period of 4 months. There are no statutory levels of overtime pay, however, many employers pay higher rates for overtime.

Public Holidays

  • New Year’s Day, 01 Jan
  • St.Brigid’s Day, 06 Feb
  • St. Patrick’s Day, 17 Mar
  • Easter Monday, (Not a standard date, usually March/April)
  • May Bank Holiday, (1st Monday in May)
  • June Bank Holiday, (1st Monday in June)
  • August Bank Holiday, (1st Monday in August)
  • October Bank Holiday, (Last Monday in October)
  • Christmas Day, 25 Dec
  • St. Stephen’s Day, 26 Dec

Vacation Allowance

Full-time employees working in Ireland are entitled to 4 weeks annual leave. Part-time employees get a proportional amount, based on 8% of their hours worked.

Sick Leave

As of January 1, 2023, employees are entitled to a minimum of 3 days of sick pay per year, known as statutory sick pay. This legally mandated minimum is paid by the employer at a rate of 70% of the employee’s regular pay, up to a daily cap of €110.
To be eligible for statutory sick pay, an individual must be an employee and have completed at least 13 weeks of work with their employer.

Maternity / Paternity leave

  • Maternity: 26 weeks; at least 2 weeks before the baby is due, and at least 4 weeks after birth. If the mother has enough social insurance contributions, she may receive a maternity benefit from the Department of Social Protection. Some employers may also  top up this benefit.
  • Paternity: 2 weeks within 6 months of the birth.

Termination & Severance

If employment was terminated due to redundancy, the employee is entitled to a statutory payment provided they have worked for at least 104 weeks beforehand. The amount is equal to 2 weeks’ gross pay per year served, plus an additional one week’s wages.

Employment termination for other reasons does not entitle the individual to severance pay, however, they may receive their pay in lieu of working during the notice period if agreed with the employer.

Notice Period


The notice period in Ireland is dependent on the length of service.

Duration of employmentMinimum notice period
13 weeks to 2 years1 week
2 years to 5 years2 weeks
5 years to 10 years4 weeks
10 years to 15 years6 weeks
15 years or more8 weeks


The statutory minimum notice for an employee is 1 week; the actual minimum notice period is normally stated in the contract of employment, and can be longer.

Social Security

Employee social insurance (PRSI) contributions are deducted automatically from the wage, while employer contributions are paid by the employers themselves. The amount of contributions is dependent on the employee’s earnings per week.

CategoryEmployer (%)Employee (%)
PRSI – Income < EUR 352/week8.8%0%
PRSI – Income EUR 352.01 – 441/week8.8%4%
PRSI – Income >= EUR 441/week11.05%4%

For individuals earning between EUR 352 and 424 per week, there is a credit which reduces the amount of PRSI paid. The maximum credit is EUR 12 for earnings of EUR 352, and is reduced by one-sixth of the weekly earnings over that amount. This credit is subtracted after the default 4% PRSI calculation.

Universal Social Charge

The Universal Social Charge is an additional progressive tax on yearly income, and is calculated either weekly or monthly. While individuals earning less than EUR 13,000 per year are not subject to this tax, individuals earning more pay the USC on their full income.

Yearly Income (EUR)USC Rate (%)
0 – 12,0120.5%
12,012.01 – 22,9202%
22,920.01 – 70,0444.5%
70,044.01 +8%


State pensions in Ireland are covered by social security, and individuals who have paid at least 10 years of PRSI contributions are eligible; the amount of the pension depends on the quantity of contributions.

Taxation in Ireland

The Irish fiscal year runs from January 1 to December 31.

Tax Rates

The following progressive rates apply for 2023:

Taxable Income (EUR)Tax Rate (%)
0 – 36,80020%
36,801 +40%

Tax Credits

All individuals working in Ireland are entitled to a personal tax credit, which reduces the tax payable by a fixed amount; this credit is dependent on the individual’s marital status, and whether they have children.

There is also an Employee Tax Credit of EUR 1,700, which is applicable to all individuals that are in employment.

Tax Returns

The annual income tax return must be filed online via the Revenue Online Service (ROS) until the 31 October for the previous tax year.

Double Taxation

The annual income tax return must be filed online via the Revenue Online Service (ROS) until the 31 October for the previous tax year.

Health Insurance

Individuals working in Ireland are entitled to receive publicly funded health care, provided they are planning to stay in Ireland for at least a year. However, foreigners applying for a work visa must have private medical insurance in Ireland.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Ireland is one of the highest in Western Europe. The estimated monthly cost for a single person is around EUR 2,700, with up to 1,700 going to rent.

How We Can Help

We provide a full set of services in Ireland allowing corporate clients, recruitment agencies and professional contractors to operate in an optimal manner while ensuring that all local employment obligations are taken care of.

Access Financial offers the following solutions in Ireland:

  • Employed/EOR Solution
  • Limited Company Solution

If you would like to discuss how Access Financial can help in Ireland, please contact us.


We have prepared this as a guide only; it does not form part of an offer. Please request illustrations based on your specific case from one of our Solution Managers.