Anyone seeking employment in Ireland must apply for an Irish Personal Public Service Number (PPS). To obtain this you must visit your local Social Welfare Office.
If you are a member of EU and/ or European Economic Area (EEA) a residence permit is not required. All non-nationals who are not citizens of a Member State of the European Union, the European Economic Area or Switzerland, must register with An Garda Síochána.
EU/ EEA nationals have the right to live and work in Ireland without a work permit, and have the same rights as Irish nationals with regard to pay and working conditions.
A non-EEA national (with some exceptions) requires an employment permit to take up employment in Ireland.
Kinds of employment
The minimum age for a regular job in Ireland is 16. A person under 18 may not be employed for more than 40 hours a week or 8 hours a day, except in a genuine emergency.
Employed or self-employed? - While in most cases it will be perfectly clear who is an employee in Ireland, sometimes a business anxious to avoid employment legislation, tax and social insurance may insist that all people working for the firm are self-employed rather than employees. Deciding whether you are employed or self-employed has a number of implications for you. The majority of employment protection legislation in Ireland applies to employees only and the tax and social insurance system will treat you very differently depending on whether you are employed or self-employed.
Part-time employees - The number of people working in part-time employment in Ireland has greatly increased in the past few years. One of the reasons is a more flexible, family-friendly attitude by employers to employees working in this way. Part-time employees are in a similar position to full-time employees when it comes to employment protection legislation, although in some instances a part-time employee will need to work a set minimum number of hours for a set period of time before acquiring rights.
Fixed-term employees - Many more people are now employed on a fixed-term basis (or on specific purpose contracts). Employees working on repeated fixed-term contracts are covered under the Unfair Dismissals legislation; however they need to have at least one year's continuous service before they can bring a claim under the Unfair Dismissals Act. Under the Protection of Employees (Fixed Term Work) Act 2003, employers cannot continually renew fixed term contracts. Employees can only work on one or more fixed term contracts for a continuous period of four years. After this the employee is considered to have a contract of indefinite duration (e.g. a permanent contract).
Casual employees - There is no definition of 'casual employees' in employment law in Ireland. In reality, casual workers are on standby to do work as required without fixed hours or attendance arrangements. However, these workers are employees, for employment rights purposes. Some legislation will apply, for example, the right to receive a pay slip. In other instances where a set period of employment is required it will be unlikely that a casual employee will have sufficient service to qualify, for example, two years’ service is required in order to be entitled to statutory redundancy.