The Department of Homeland Security published their annual report on people who have overstayed their visas in the US

In their most recent Visa Overstay report, which looks at data gathered during the 2018 fiscal year between October 1, 2017 and September 30, 2018, the US Department of Homeland security provides data on visitors they believe to have overstayed their visas.

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In the wake of the report, a memorandum signed by President Trump and published on April 22, 2019, said: “As of March 2019, there were over 415,000 individuals in the United States suspected to still be in the United States after overstaying their nonimmigrant visas in fiscal year (FY) 2018."

The memo noted: "Twenty countries have overstay rates of more than 10 percent—some with rates as high as 20, 30, or 40 percent."

The memo also said: "DHS requires Visa Waiver Program countries with an overstay rate exceeding two percent to implement public awareness campaigns that warn against overstaying visas." 

Data for the 2018 Fiscal Year showed that Ireland had relatively low overstay rates and would not necessarily be subject to the above directives.

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What does the DHS consider an "overstay"?

The report states: “An overstay is a nonimmigrant who was lawfully admitted to the United States for an authorized period, but remained in the United States beyond his or her authorized period of admission.

"The authorized admission period can be a fixed period; or for the duration of a certain activity, such as the period during which a student is pursuing a full course of study or any authorized technical/practical training.

"DHS identifies two types of overstays: 1) individuals for whom no departure has been recorded (Suspected In-Country Overstays), and 2) individuals whose departure was recorded after their authorized period of admission expired (Out-of-Country Overstays).”

Is Ireland part of the US Visa Waiver Program?

Yes. As part of the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), Ireland's citizens can "travel to the United States for tourism or business for stays of 90 days or less without obtaining a visa.”

People traveling from Ireland to the US under the Visa Waiver Program must have a valid Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to travel.

The DHS's report organized their data by countries who were part of the Visa Waiver Program, and those who were not.

Below is the data gathered on people from Ireland who overstayed their visas in the 2018 fiscal year.

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Business and pleasure visitor from Ireland overstays

  • Expected Departures: 558,218 
  • Out-of-Country Overstays: 218 
  • Suspected In-Country Overstays: 1,487 
  • Total Overstays: 1,705 
  • Total Overstay Rate: 0.31%
  • Suspected In-Country Overstay Rate: 0.27%

Students and exchange visitor from Ireland overstays

  • Expected Departures: 11,868 
  • Out-of-Country Overstays: 121 
  • Suspected In-Country Overstays: 230 
  • Total Overstays: 351 
  • Total Overstay Rate: 2.96% 
  • Suspected In-Country Overstay Rate: 1.94%

Other in-scope nonimmigrant classes of admission from Ireland overstays

  • Expected Departures: 22,567 
  • Out-of-Country Overstays: 150 
  • Suspected In-Country Overstays: 133 
  • Total Overstays: 283 
  • Total Overstay Rate: 1.25% 
  • Suspected In-Country Overstay Rate: 0.59%