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People return to Ireland for a variety of reasons, and not everyone can plan their move back. We assist Irish citizens returning in a wide range of circumstances, including those being deported, fleeing conflict zones, requiring support after release from prison, or needing of emergency homeless accommodation upon arrival in Ireland.

Homeless on Arrival

If you have returned to Ireland and you are homeless, you should go to the Local Authority (city or county council) in the area which you last lived to request emergency accommodation assistance. Please note that council offices are closed outside normal office hours (9am – 5pm), as well as on weekends and Bank Holidays.

If you are homeless in Dublin:

  • Contact the Central Placement Service (CPS) on Freephone 1800 707 707 (7 days a week, 10am – 10pm) for emergency accommodation and urgent housing support in Dublin City. You can also visit CPS at Parkgate Hall, 6-9 Conyngham Road, Dublin 8 from 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday.
  • If you are sleeping rough in Dublin, phone 01 872 0185 (Monday to Friday 7am – 1am, Saturday to Sunday 9am – 1pm) to speak to the Dublin Outreach team. This service is provided by Dublin Simon Community in partnership with the Dublin Region Homeless Executive.

Social Welfare Payments if Homeless

It is possible to access social welfare if you are homeless, however you will need to apply and undergo an assessment.

If you are in Dublin, contact the Department of Social Protection Homeless Persons Unit/Community Welfare Service 1800 724 724 to make an appointment to meet a Community Welfare Officer and apply for a social welfare payment. Appointments are scheduled between 9:30am – 1:30pm. If you have a question about the service, email HPU@welfare.ie.

For social welfare payments outside of Dublin, contact the local Community Welfare Officer.

These offices are closed outside normal office hours, on weekends, and Bank Holidays.

Emergency Medical Help

If you are in need of emergency medical assistance on your return, go to the Accident & Emergency (A&E) department at the nearest hospital or call 999 or 112.

Deportation

If you are being deported back to Ireland from abroad, make sure to bring:

  • Photo ID (passport or a copy of Emergency Travel Document)
  • Proof of your deportation (release papers or a letter from the relevant Irish Embassy or Consulate)

Once you can provide proof of your deportation, you should be able to access a social welfare payment on return if eligible. We can help you with this.

Release from Prison Abroad

If you or someone you know is in prison abroad, contact the Irish Council for Prisoners Overseas (ICPO) before returning to Ireland by calling +353 1 5053156 or emailing icpo@iecon.ie. See their website at icpo.ie.

Download this ‘Resettlement Handbook,’ along with our ‘Step-By-Step Guide for returning to Ireland if you are being released from prison overseas/deported‘ for useful information.

Help Abroad

If you need help abroad, contact your local Irish embassy or consulate. You can also contact the Consular Assistance Unit in Dublin by phone on +353 1 408 2000.

Irish emigrant support organisations may also be able to offer some support. See our list of support organisations here or the Department of Foreign Affairs’ Diaspora Directory.

If you are moving back to Ireland and need support immediately on your return, contact us as soon as possible, ideally before you arrive. Fill in our ‘Get Help’ form and tell us a little bit about your situation so we can better advise you on your options.

Get Help

What We Can Do

We can provide you with information and support before, during, and after you return. As part of this, we can help you to apply for social welfare payments and emergency accommodation. We also assist with appeals of social welfare refusals, especially those due to the Habitual Residence Condition (HRC). We can also support you to get help from other relevant services.

What We Cannot Do

We cannot assist with travel costs to or from Ireland. We also cannot provide accommodation or money, but we can work with you to get help from state services.

Page last updated on 12 February, 2024

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