Finance is a crucial factor when considering or planning a return to Ireland. Preparation is key when it comes organising your finances for return. This page offers some tips to effectively plan and manage your money throughout the return process.
Opening an Irish Bank Account
If you are opening an Irish bank account upon returning to Ireland, shop around to find the best option for you. There are several major longstanding Irish providers, including AIB, Bank of Ireland, and Permanent TSB. All financial services in Ireland are accredited by the Central Bank of Ireland—before using any services, check their register here. Online providers, such as Revolut, have become increasingly popular. As these platforms are new to the Irish market and are not accepted universally, so it is still advised to set up a traditional bank account.
To open a bank account, you must show proof of identity and proof of address. You may have to do this in-person at your local branch of choice. In general, this means that you cannot open an account until you have arrived back in Ireland. This process can take time so be sure to have a means of accessing money during this period.
Learn more about opening a bank account upon return on the Citizens Information website.
Closing Foreign Accounts
If you decide to close your foreign bank account, make sure you have hard copies of your recent bank statements (at least six months) before you do so. This documentation can prove important upon return to Ireland for proof of financial circumstances, immigration, and more.
If you think you will need to access social welfare upon return to Ireland, closing foreign accounts before you return can be an important step in proving Ireland is your main centre of interest to satisfy the Habitual Residence Condition. Contact us if you think this applies to you and we provide you with more information.Contact Us
Using Foreign Accounts
Depending on your circumstances, you may want to keep open your overseas bank account when you return to Ireland. Contact your banking provider for information on keeping your account open and changing your country of residence.
If you are returning from another SEPA (Single European Payments Area) country, you can continue to use your bank account from that country for payments and transfers in euro. SEPA countries include all countries in the European Union, the United Kingdom, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, Switzerland, Andorra, San Marino, and Vatican City. Please note that you may be asked for more details when completing transactions via these accounts as opposed to an Irish equivalent.
There may be tax implications for using foreign accounts upon return to Ireland. Citizens Information provide an overview of financial considerations when using foreign bank accounts upon return here.
Cost of Living
Depending on when you left Ireland and where you are returning from, the cost of living in Ireland may be more than what you expect. Ireland is currently experiencing a cost-of-living crisis. This is an important factor in when making the decision to return to Ireland so you can organise your finances accordingly.
The Government of Ireland has instituted some measures to counteract the cost of living crisis. Depending on your circumstances, you may be eligible for these supports upon return. Learn more on the Citizens Information website.
If you receive government financial support abroad, before your return you should check if you are eligible to continue receiving these benefits if you return to live in Ireland.
If you need financial support upon returning to Ireland, you can apply for social welfare. In order to qualify for a payment, you will need to meet certain criteria – for instance, you may need a certain amount of social insurance contributions or you may need to be deemed habitually resident and also satisfy a means test. Visit our social welfare section to learn more.Social Welfare
If you are in receipt of a contribution based pension overseas, you may be able to continue to receive this on your return to Ireland. Contact the department that issues your pension to check this in advance of your return. Learn more about transferring a pension here.
Depending on where you have worked, you may be able to combine social insurance record from another country to qualify for the Irish State Pension. Citizens Information has more information on this.
Before you return to Ireland, research tax obligations based on your financial situation. Depending on where you are returning from and your situation on return, you may be required to pay tax in the country from which you are returning and in Ireland.
Citizens Information provide a comprehensive overview of tax domiciles and other tax-related considerations for Irish returnees here.
Page last updated on 12 September, 2023