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18 January 2023

Ireland’s Department of Justice has announced a number of amendments to the Atypical Working Scheme (AWS), a short-term immigration permission which allows an individual to enter Ireland and work for a maximum of 90 days.1

The AWS allows non-European Economic Area (EEA) nationals to do certain short-term contract work that is not eligible for an employment permit.  One can only apply for the AWS from outside of Ireland.

The AWS is administered by the Department of Justice and longer-term permissions to work are administered by the Employment Permits Section of the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment.  

Why this matters

The AWS was created to facilitate specialised, highly-skilled employment of a short-term nature that does not fall within the remit of any other immigration permission in Ireland.  In most cases, work permission under the AWS is granted for a maximum of 90 days.

The proposed changes will allow greater flexibility for employers and employees seeking to avail of a short-term permission to work in Ireland for general categories of employment by significantly reducing the waiting time for further subsequent short-term applications and removing the requirement for the 90 days of work permission to be used in one single block.

Planned Changes to AWS

Our insights

Under these new rules, the cooling-off period of one month will apply from the end of the six-month period before any new entry to Ireland under a subsequent AWS permission can occur.  A new application can be made during this one-month period, but the permission granted cannot be used until the month has passed.

Considerations for Employers

Our insights

There are certain situations that would make a non-EEA national ineligible for AWS; for example if that person is :

If individuals have questions regarding their eligibility, the conditions for making an application, and what kinds of supporting documentation are required to support the application, they should contact their qualified immigration counsel or a member of the Employment Law team with KPMG Law LLP in Ireland (see the below Contact Us section). 


  1. Department of Justice, "Changes to the Atypical Working Scheme effective from 1 January 2023.”    

Contact the team

Aoife Newton

Aoife Newton

Head of Employment and Immigration Law

elaine norton

Elaine Norton

Associate Director