I have received a commitment from the Minister for Social Protection, Éamon Ó Cuív, that changes to the relevant
legislation will be made in order to enable deaths of Irish citizens who have died abroad to be registered at home.

Currently, most deaths of Irish citizens overseas can only be registered within the country where the death occurs and an Irish death certificate cannot be obtained.

As a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Social and Family Affairs, I recently heard from family members of Irish people who have died abroad.

I am satisfied that following my Parliamentary Question (details below) that the Minister for Social Protection has now indicated
that changes will be made. This issue was creating unnecessary anger and grief for families who were already mourning the loss of a loved one.

I would urge that the necessary changes would be made swiftly and that all families affected would be informed and update on the progress of legislation amendments.

The Committee was told that in the last three years 598 Irish citizens have died outside this country. In 2009, the figure was 244 and to date in 2010, over 40 Irish nationals have lost their lives overseas.

I know that many people are further traumatised and angered by not being able to properly record the death of a loved one abroad.

I welcome  Minister Ó Cuív’s response to my Parliamentary Question that he will amend the relevant section of the Civil Registration Act 2004 to allow deaths abroad to be registered in Ireland.

It is estimated that over 6,000 J1 visas are granted annually, 22,000 working holiday visas, while in 2009 approximately seven million trips were made from these shores by Irish people. This therefore is an area of pressing concern.”

Question No: 104                                            Ref No:

*    To  ask  the  Minister for Social Protection when he will amend the 2004 Civil Registration Act to allow grieving Irish families whose loved ones  died  abroad  to be able to register their deaths in this country; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

– Joe Carey.

For WRITTEN answer on Thursday, 6th May, 2010.


Minister for Social Protection (Éamon Ó Cuív T.D.)

It  is  intended  to propose to make a number of amendments to the Civil

Registration  Act  2004  and, in this context, I will review the current provisions  in relation to the registration in this country of deaths of Irish people which occur outside the State.