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Ireland - Constitution Index Page Document Table of Contents

    { Adopted on: 1 July 1937 }
    { ICL Document Status: Sep 2015 }

    { Editor's Note
    The Amendments 1992 and 1995 have been included by help of G. Manten who also verified the consolidation of the ICL edition up to 1995. The 2015 ICL edition was prepared by A. Meister. The text of the document is based on the official publication by the Government. Chapter numbers and Article titles have been added in square brackets. Even though the official publication is in english, this edition, for better comparison, adopts the ICL style for normative content and eliminates the use of "shall". }

 
Preamble
In the name of the Most Holy Trinity, from Whom is all authority and to Whom, as our final end, all actions both of men and States must be referred,
We, the people of Ireland, humbly acknowledging all our obligations to our Divine Lord, Jesus Christ, Who sustained our fathers through centuries of trial,
Gratefully remembering their heroic and unremitting struggle to regain the rightful independence of our Nation,
And seeking to promote the common good, with due observance of Prudence, Justice and Charity, so that the dignity6111 and freedom of the individual may be assured, true social order attained, the unity of our country restored, and concord established with other nations,
Do hereby adopt, enact, and give to ourselves this Constitution.11
 

[Chapter I]  The Nation

 
Article 1  [Sovereign Rights]
The Irish nation hereby affirms its inalienable, indefeasible, and sovereign right to choose its own form of Government, to determine its relations with other nations, and to develop its life, political, economic and cultural, in accordance with its own genius and traditions.
 
Article 2  [Citizenship]
It is the entitlement and birthright of every person born in the island of Ireland, which includes its islands and seas, to be part of the Irish Nation. That is also the entitlement of all persons otherwise qualified in accordance with law to be citizens of Ireland. Furthermore, the Irish nation cherishes its special affinity with people of Irish ancestry living abroad who share its cultural identity and heritage.
 
Article 3  [Extent of Application of Laws]
(1) It is the firm will of the Irish Nation, in harmony and friendship, to unite all the people who share the territory of the island of Ireland, in all the diversity of their identities and traditions, recognizing that a united Ireland is brought about only by peaceful means with the consent of a majority of the people, democratically expressed, in both jurisdictions in the island. Until then, the laws enacted by the Parliament established by this Constitution have the like area and extent of application as the laws enacted by the Parliament that existed immediately before the coming into operation of this Constitution.
(2) Institutions with executive powers and functions that are shared between those jurisdictions may be established by their respective responsible authorities for stated purposes and may exercise powers and functions in respect of all or any part of the island.
 

[Chapter II]  The State

 
Article 4  [Name of the State]
The name of the State is Ireland.
 
Article 5  [State Principles]
Ireland is a sovereign, independent, democratic state.
 
Article 6  [Popular Sovereignty, Rule of Law]
(1) All powers of government, legislative, executive and judicial, derive, under God, from the people, whose right it is to designate the rulers of the State and, in final appeal, to decide all questions of national policy, according to the requirements of the common good.
(2) These powers of government are exercisable only by or on the authority of the organs of State established by this Constitution.
 
Article 7  [Flag]
The national flag is the tricolor of green, white and orange.
 
Article 8  [Language]
(1) The Irish language as the national language is the first official language.
(2) The English language is recognized as a second official language.
(3) Provision may, however, be made by law for the exclusive use of either of the said languages for any one or more official purposes, either throughout the State or in any part thereof.
 
Article 9  [Citizenship]
(1.1) On the coming into operation of this Constitution any person who was a citizen of Ireland immediately before the coming into operation of this Constitution becomes and is a citizen of Ireland.
(1.2) The future acquisition and loss of Irish nationality and citizenship are determined in accordance with law.
(1.3) No person may be excluded from Irish nationality and citizenship by reason of the sex of such person.
(2.1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Constitution, a person born in the island of Ireland, which includes its islands and seas, who does not have, at the time of the birth of that person, at least one parent who is an Irish citizen or entitled to be an Irish citizen is not entitled to Irish citizenship or nationality, unless provided for by law.
(2.2) This section applies to persons born before the date of enactment of this section,
(3) Fidelity to the nation and loyalty to the State are fundamental political duties of all citizens.
 
Article 10  [Natural Resources]
(1) All natural resources, including the air and all forms of potential energy, within the jurisdiction of Parliament and Government established by this Constitution and all royalties and franchises within that jurisdiction belong to the State subject to all estates and interests therein for the time being lawfully vested in any person or body.
(2) All land and all mines, minerals and waters which belonged to Ireland immediately before the coming into operation of this Constitution belong to the State to the same extent as they then belonged to Ireland.
(3) Provision may be made by law for the management of the property which belongs to the State by virtue of this Article and for the control of the alienation, whether temporary or permanent, of that property.
(4) Provision may also be made by law for the management of land, mines, minerals and waters acquired by the State after the coming into operation of this Constitution and for the control of the alienation, whether temporary or permanent, of the land, mines, minerals and waters so acquired.
 
Article 11  [Fund]
All revenues of the State from whatever source arising, subject to such exception as may be provided by law, form one fund, and are appropriated for the purposes and in the manner and subject to the charges and liabilities determined and imposed by law.
 

[Chapter III]  The President

 
Article 12  [Election]
(1) There is a President of Ireland, hereinafter called the President, who takes precedence over all other persons in the State and who exercises and performs the powers and functions conferred on the President by this Constitution and by law.51
(2.1) The President is elected by direct vote of the people.
(2.2) Every citizen who has the right to vote at an election for members of the House of Representatives has the right to vote at an election for President.
(2.3) The voting is by secret ballot and on the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote.
(3.1) The President holds office for seven years from the date upon which he enters upon his office, unless before the expiration of that period he dies, or resigns, or is removed from office, or becomes permanently incapacitated, such incapacity being established to the satisfaction of the Supreme Court consisting of not less than five judges.
(3.2) A person who holds, or who has held, office as President, is eligible for re-election to that office once, but only once.
(3.3) An election for the office of President is held not later than, and not earlier than the sixtieth day before, the date of the expiration of the term of office of every President, but in the event of the removal from office of the President or of his death, resignation, or permanent incapacity established as aforesaid (whether occurring before or after he enters upon his office), an election for the office of President is held within sixty days after such event.
(4.1) Every citizen who has reached his thirty-fifth year of age is eligible for election to the office of President.
(4.2) Every candidate for election, not a former or retiring President, must be nominated either by:
(i) not less than twenty persons, each of whom is at the time a member of one of the Houses of Parliament or
(ii) by the Councils of not less than four administrative Counties (including County Boroughs) as defined by law.
(4.3) No person and no such Council is entitled to subscribe to the nomination of more than one candidate in respect of the same election.
(4.4) Former or retiring Presidents may become candidates on their own nomination.
(4.5) Where only one candidate is nominated for the office of President it is not necessary to proceed to a ballot for his election.
(5) Subject to the provisions of this Article, elections for the office of President are regulated by law.
(6.1) The President may not be a member of either House of Parliament.
(6.2) If a member of either House of Parliament is elected President, he is deemed to have vacated his seat in that House.
(6.3) The President may not hold any other office or position of emolument.
(7) The first President enters upon his office as soon as may be after his election, and every subsequent President enters upon his office on the day following the expiration of the term of office of his predecessor or as soon as may be thereafter or, in the event of his predecessor's removal from office, death, resignation, or permanent incapacity established as provided by Section (3), as soon as may be after the election.
(8) The President enters upon his office by taking and subscribing publicly, in the presence of members of both Houses of Parliament, of Judges of the Supreme Court and of the High Court, and other public personages, the following declaration:
"In the presence of Almighty God I do solemnly and sincerely promise and declare that l will maintain the Constitution of Ireland and uphold its laws, that I will fulfill my duties faithfully and conscientiously in accordance with the Constitution and the law, and that I will dedicate my abilities to the service and welfare of the people of Ireland. May God direct and sustain me."
(9) The President may not leave the State during his term of office save with the consent of the Government.
(10.1) The President may be impeached for stated misbehavior.
(10.2) The charge is preferred by either of the Houses of Parliament, subject to and in accordance with the provisions of this section.
(10.3) A proposal to either House of Parliament to prefer a charge against the President under this section is not entertained unless upon a notice of motion in writing signed by not less than thirty members of that House.
(10.4) No such proposal is adopted by either of the Houses of Parliament save upon a resolution of that House supported by not less than two-thirds of the total membership thereof.
(10.5) When a charge has been preferred by either House of Parliament, the other House investigates the charge, or cause the charge to be investigated.
(10.6) The President has the right to appear and to be represented at the investigation of the charge.
(10.7) If, as a result of the investigation, a resolution be passed supported by not less than two-thirds of the total membership of the House of Parliament by which the charge was investigated, or caused to be investigated, declaring that the charge preferred against the President has been sustained and that the misbehavior, the subject of the charge, was such as to render him unfit to continue in office, such resolution operates to remove the President from his office
(11.1) The President has an official residence in or near the City of Dublin.
(11.2) The President receives such emoluments and allowances as may be determined by law.
(11.3) The emoluments and allowances of the President are not diminished during his term of office.
 
Article 13  [Functions]
(1.1) The President appoints, on the nomination of the House of Representatives, the Prime Minister.
(1.2) The President appoints, on the nomination of the Prime Minister with the previous approval of the House of Representatives, the other members of the Government.
(1.3) The President accepts, on the advice of the Prime Minister, the resignation or terminates the appointment of any member of the Government.
(2.1) The House of Representatives is summoned and dissolved by the President on the advice of the Prime Minister.
(2.2) The President may in his absolute discretion refuse to dissolve the House of Representatives on the advice of a Prime Minister who has ceased to retain the support of a majority in the House of Representatives.
(2.3) The President may at any time, after consultation with the Council of State, convene a meeting of either or both of the Houses of Parliament.
(3.1) Every Bill passed or deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament requires the signature of the President for its enactment into law.
(3.2) The President promulgates every law made by Parliament.
(4) The supreme command of the Defense Forces is hereby vested in the President.
(5.1) The exercise of the supreme command of the Defense Forces is regulated by law.
(5.2) All commissioned officers of the Defense Forces hold their commissions from the President.
(6) The right of pardon and the power to commute or remit punishment imposed by any court exercising criminal jurisdiction are hereby vested in the President, but such power of commutation or remission may also be conferred by law on other authorities.
(7.1) The President may, after consultation with the Council of State, communicate with the Houses of Parliament by message or address on any matter of national or public importance.
(7.2) The President may, after consultation with the Council of State, address a message to the Nation at any time on any such matter.
(7.3) Every such message or address must, however, have received the approval of the Government.
(8.1) The President is not answerable to either House of Parliament or to any court for the exercise and performance of the powers and functions of his office or for any act done or purporting to be done by him in the exercise and performance of these powers and functions.
(8.2) The behavior of the President may, however, be brought under review in either of the Houses of Parliament for the purposes of Article 12 (10), or by any court, tribunal or body appointed or designated by either of the Houses of Parliament for the investigation of a charge under Article 12 (10).
(9) The powers and functions conferred on the President by this Constitution are exercisable and performable by him only on the advice of the Government, save where it is provided by this Constitution that he acts in his absolute discretion or after consultation with or in relation to the Council of State, or on the advice or nomination of, or on receipt of any other communication from, any other person or body.
(10) Subject to this Constitution, additional powers and functions may be conferred on the President by law.
(11) No power or function conferred on the President by law is exercisable or performable by him save only on the advice of the Government.
 
Article 14  [Absence of the President]
(1) In the event of the absence of the President, or his temporary incapacity, or his permanent incapacity established as provided by Article 12 (3) hereof, or in the event of his death, resignation, removal from office, or failure to exercise and perform the powers and functions of his office or any of them, or at any time at which the office of President may be vacant, the powers and functions conferred on the President by or under this Constitution are exercised and performed by a Commission constituted as provided in Section (2) of this article.
(2.1) The Commission consists of the following persons, namely, the Chief Justice, the Chairman of the House of Representatives, and the Chairman of the Senate.
(2.2) The President of the High Court acts as a member of the Commission in the place of the Chief Justice on any occasion on which the office of Chief Justice is vacant or on which the Chief Justice is unable to act.
(2.3) The Deputy Chairman of the House of Representatives acts as a member of the Commission in the place of the Chairman of the House of Representatives on any occasion on which the office of Chairman of the House of Representatives is vacant or on which the said Chairman is unable to act.
(2.4) The Deputy Chairman of the Senate acts as a member of the Commission in the place of the Chairman of the Senate on any occasion on which the office of Chairman of the Senate is vacant or on which the said Chairman is unable to act.
(3) The Commission may act by any two of their number and may act notwithstanding a vacancy in their membership.
(4) The Council of State may by a majority of its members make such provision as to them may seem meet for the exercise and performance of the powers and functions conferred on the President by or under this Constitution in any contingency which is not provided for by the foregoing provisions of this article.
(5.1) The provisions of this Constitution which relate to the exercise and performance by the President of the powers and functions conferred on him by or under this Constitution subject to the subsequent provisions of this section apply to the exercise and performance of the said powers and functions under this article.
(5.2) In the event of the failure of the President to exercise or perform any power or function which the President is by or under this Constitution required to exercise or perform within a specified time, the said power or function is exercised or performed under this article, as soon as may be after the expiration of the time so specified.
 

[Chapter IV]  The National Parliament

 

[Part 1]  Constitution and Powers

 
Article 15  [Constitution, Functions]
(1.1) The National Parliament is called and known, and is in this Constitution generally referred to, as Parliament.532
(1.2) Parliament consists of the President and two Houses, viz.: a House of Representatives and a Senate.
(1.3) The Houses of Parliament sits in or near the City of Dublin or in such other place as they may from time to time determine.
(2.1) The sole and exclusive power of making laws for the State is hereby vested in Parliament: no other legislative authority has power to make laws for the State.
(2.2) Provision may however be made by law for the creation or recognition of subordinate legislatures and for the powers and functions of these legislatures.
(3.1) Parliament may provide for the establishment or recognition of functional or vocational councils representing branches of the social and economic life of the people.
(3.2) A law establishing or recognizing any such council determines its rights, powers and duties, and its relation to Parliament and to the Government.
(4.1) Parliament may not enact any law which is in any respect repugnant to this Constitution or any provision thereof.
(4.2) Every law enacted by Parliament which is in any respect repugnant to this Constitution or to any provision thereof, is, but to the extent only of such repugnancy, invalid.
(5.1) Parliament may not declare acts to be infringements of the law which were not so at the date of their commission.
(5.2) Parliament may not enact any law providing for the imposition of the death penalty.
(6.1) The right to raise and maintain military or armed forces is vested exclusively in Parliament.
(6.2) No military or armed force, other than a military or armed force raised and maintained by Parliament, are raised or maintained for any purpose whatsoever.
(7) Parliament holds at least one session every year.
(8.1) Sittings of each House of Parliament are public.
(8.2) In cases of special emergency, however, either House may hold a private sitting with the assent of two-thirds of the members present.
(9.1) Each House of Parliament elects from its members its own Chairman and Deputy Chairman, and prescribes their powers and duties.
(9.2) The remuneration of the Chairman and Deputy Chairman of each House is determined by law.
(10) Each House makes its own rules and standing orders, with power to attach penalties for their infringement, and has power to ensure freedom of debate, to protect its official documents and the private papers of its members, and to protect itself and its members against any person or persons interfering with, molesting or attempting to corrupt its members in the exercise of their duties.
(11.1) All questions in each House are, save as otherwise provided by this Constitution, determined by a majority of the votes of the members present and voting other than the Chairman or presiding member.
(11.2) The Chairman or presiding member has and exercises a casting vote in the case of an equality of votes.
(11.3) The number of members necessary to constitute a meeting of either House for the exercise of its powers is determined by its standing orders.
(12) All official reports and publications of Parliament or of either House thereof and utterances made in either House wherever published are privileged.
(13) The members of each House of Parliament are, except in case of treason as defined in this Constitution, felony or breach of the peace, privileged from arrest in going to and returning from, and while within the precincts of, either House, and are not, in respect of any utterance in either House, amenable to any court or any authority other than the House itself.
(14) No person may be at the same time a member of both Houses of Parliament, and, if any person who is already a member of either House becomes a member of the other House, he forthwith is deemed to have vacated his first seat.
(15) Parliament may make provision by law for the payment of allowances to the members of each House thereof in respect of their duties as public representatives and for the grant to them of free travelling and such other facilities (if any) in connection with those duties as Parliament may determine.
 

[Part 2]  Dáil Éireann [Lower House]

 
Article 16  [Eligibility]
(1.1) Every citizen without distinction of sex who has reached the age of twenty-one years, and who is not placed under disability or incapacity by this Constitution or by law, is eligible for membership of the House of Representatives.6271
(1.2)(i) All citizens, and
(ii) such other persons in the State as may be determined by law,
without distinction of sex who have reached the age of eighteen years who are not disqualified by law and comply with the provisions of the law relating to the election of members of the House of Representatives, have the right to vote at an election for members of the House of Representatives.
(1.3) No law is enacted placing any citizen under disability or incapacity for membership of the House of Representatives on the ground of sex or disqualifying any citizen or other person from voting at an election for members of the House of Representatives on that ground.
(1.4) No voter may exercise more than one vote at an election for the House of Representatives, and the voting is by secret ballot.
(2.1) The House of Representatives is composed of members who represent constituencies determined by law.
(2.2) The number of members is from time to time fixed by law, but the total number of members of the House of Representatives is not fixed at less than one member for each thirty thousand of the population, or at more than one member for each twenty thousand of the population.
(2.3) The ratio between the number of members to be elected at any time for each constituency and the population of each constituency, as ascertained at the last preceding census, is, so far as it is practicable, the same throughout the country.
(2.4) Parliament revises the constituencies at least once in every twelve years, with due regard to changes in distribution of the population, but any alterations in the constituencies may not take effect during the life of the House of Representatives sitting when such revision is made.
(2.5) The members are elected on the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote.
(2.6) No law is enacted whereby the number of members to be returned for any constituency is less than three.
(3.1) The House of Representatives is summoned and dissolved as provided by Article 13 (2).
(3.2) A general election for members of the House of Representatives takes place not later than thirty days after a dissolution of the House of Representatives.
(4.1) Polling at every general election for the House of Representatives takes as far as practicable place on the same day throughout the country.
(4.2) The House of Representatives meet within thirty days from that polling day.
(5) The same the House of Representatives may not continue for a longer period than seven years from the date of its first meeting: a shorter period may be fixed by law.
(6) Provision are made by law to enable the member of the House of Representatives who is the Chairman immediately before a dissolution of the House of Representatives to be deemed without any actual election to be elected a member of the House of Representatives at the ensuing general election.
(7) Subject to the foregoing provisions of this article, elections for membership of the House of Representatives, including the filling of casual vacancies, are regulated in accordance with law.
 
Article 17  [Financial Estimates]
(1.1) As soon as possible after the presentation to the House of Representatives under Article 28 of the Estimates of receipts and the Estimates of expenditure of the State for any financial year, the House of Representatives considers such Estimates.
(1.2) Save in so far as may be provided by specific enactment in each case, the legislation required to give effect to the Financial Resolutions of each year is enacted within that year.
(2) The House of Representatives may not pass any vote or resolution, and no law is enacted, for the appropriation of revenue or other public moneys unless the purpose of the appropriation has been recommended to the House of Representatives by a message from the Government signed by the Prime Minister.
 

[Part 3]  Seanad Éireann [Upper House]

 
Article 18  [Senate]
(1) The Senate is composed of sixty members, of whom eleven are nominated members and forty-nine are elected members.
(2) A person to be eligible for membership of the Senate must be eligible to become a member of the House of Representatives.
(3) The nominated members of the Senate are nominated, with their prior consent, by the Prime Minister who is appointed next after the reassembly of the House of Representatives following the dissolution thereof which occasions the nomination of the said members.
(4.1) The elected members of the Senate are elected as follows:
(i) Three are elected by the National University of Ireland.
(ii) Three are elected by the University of Dublin.
(iii) Forty-three are elected from panels of candidates constituted as hereinafter provided.
(4.2) Provision may be made by law for the election, on a franchise and in the manner to be provided by law, by one or more of the following institutions, namely:
(i) the universities mentioned in Section (4.1),
(ii) any other institutions of higher education in the State,
of so many members of the Senate as may be fixed by law in substitution for an equal number of the members to be elected pursuant to Paragraphs (i) and (ii) of the said subsection.
A member or members of the Senate may be elected under this subsection by institutions grouped together or by a single institution.
(4.3) Nothing in this article is invoked to prohibit the dissolution by law of a university mentioned in Section (4.1).
(5) Every election of the elected members of the Senate is held on the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote, and by secret postal ballot.
(6) The members of the Senate to be elected by the Universities are elected on a franchise and in the manner to be provided by law.
(7.1) Before each general election of the members of the Senate to be elected from panels of candidates, five panels of candidates are formed in the manner provided by law containing respectively the names of persons having knowledge and practical experience of the following interests and services, namely:
(i) National Language and Culture, Literature, Art, Education and such professional interests as may be defined by law for the purpose of this panel;
(ii) Agriculture and allied interests. and Fisheries;
(iii) Labor, whether organized or unorganized;
(iv) Industry and Commerce, including banking, finance, accountancy, engineering and architecture;
(v) Public Administration and social services, including voluntary social activities.
(7.2) Not more than eleven and, subject to the provisions of Article 19 hereof, not less than five members of the Senate are elected from any one panel.
(8) A general election for the Senate takes place not later than ninety days after a dissolution of the House of Representatives, and the first meeting of the Senate after the general election takes place on a day to be fixed by the President on the advice of the Prime Minister.
(9) Every member of the Senate continues, unless he previously dies, resigns, or becomes disqualified, to hold office until the day before the polling day of the general election for the Senate next held after his election or nomination.
(10.1) Subject to the foregoing provisions of this article elections of the elected members of the Senate are regulated by law.
(10.2) Casual vacancies in the number of the nominated members of the Senate are filled by nomination by the Prime Minister with the prior consent of persons so nominated.
(10.3) Casual vacancies in the number of the elected members of the Senate are filled in the manner provided by law.
 
Article 19  [Direct Election]
Provision may be made by law for the direct election by any functional or vocational group or association or council of so many members of the Senate as may be fixed by such law in substitution for an equal number of the members to be elected from the corresponding panels of candidates constituted under Article 18.
 

[Part 4]  Legislation

 
Article 20  [Amendment by Senate]
(1) Every Bill5323 initiated in and passed by the House of Representatives is sent to the Senate and may, unless it be a Money Bill, be amended in the Senate and the House of Representatives considers any such amendment.
(2.1) A Bill other than a Money Bill may be initiated in the Senate, and if passed by the Senate, is introduced in the House of Representatives.
(2.2) A Bill initiated in the Senate if amended in the House of Representatives is considered as a Bill initiated in the House of Representatives.
(3) A Bill passed by either House and accepted by the other House is be deemed to have been passed by both Houses.
 

[Part 5]  Money Bills

 
Article 21  [Initiative, Procedure]
(1.1) Money Bills5325 are initiated in the House of Representatives only.
(1.2) Every Money Bill passed by the House of Representatives is sent to the Senate for its recommendations.
(2.1) Every Money Bill sent to the Senate for its recommendations is, at the expiration of a period not longer than twenty-one days after it has been sent to the Senate, returned to the House of Representatives, which may accept or reject all or any of the recommendations of the Senate.
(2.2) If such Money Bill is not returned by the Senate to the House of Representatives within such twenty-one days or is returned within such twenty-one days with recommendations which the House of Representatives does not accept, it is deemed to have been passed by both Houses at the expiration of the said twenty-one days.
 
Article 22  [Definition of Money Bills]
(1.1) A Money Bill means a Bill which contains only provisions dealing with all or any of the following matters, namely, the imposition, repeal, remission, alteration or regulation of taxation; the imposition for the payment of debt or other financial purposes of charges on public moneys or the variation or repeal of any such charges; supply; the appropriation, receipt, custody, issue or audit of accounts of public money; the raising or guarantee of any loan or the repayment thereof; matters subordinate and incidental to these matters or any of them.
(1.2) In this definition the expressions "taxation", "public money" and "loan" respectively do not include any taxation, money or loan raised by local authorities528 or bodies for local purposes.
(2.1) The Chairman of the House of Representatives certifies any Bill which, in his opinion, is a Money Bill to be a Money Bill, and his certificate is, subject to the subsequent provisions of this section, final and conclusive.
(2.2) The Senate, by a resolution passed at a sitting at which not less than thirty members are present, may request the President to refer the question whether the Bill is or is not a Money Bill to a Committee of Privileges.
(2.3) If the President after consultation with the Council of State decides to accede to the request he appoints a Committee of Privilege consisting of an equal number of members of the House of Representatives and of the Senate and a Chairman who are a judge of the Supreme Court: these appointments are made after consultation with the Council of State. In the case of an equality of votes but not otherwise the chairman is entitled to vote.
(2.4) The President refers the question to the Committee of Privileges so appointed and the Committee reports its decision thereon to the President within twenty-one days after the day on which the Bill was sent to the Senate.
(2.5) The decision of the Committee is final and conclusive.
(2.6) If the President after consultation with the Council of State decides not to accede to the request of the Senate, or if the Committee of Privileges fails to report within the time hereinbefore specified the certificate of the Chairman of the House of Representatives stands confirmed.
 

[Part 6]  Time for Consideration of Bills

 
Article 23  [Timing]
(1) This article applies to every Bill passed by the House of Representatives and sent to the Senate other than a Money Bill or a Bill the time for the consideration of which by the Senate has been abridged under Article 24.
(1.1) Whenever a Bill to which this article applies is within the stated period defined in the next following subsection either rejected by the Senate or passed by the Senate with amendments to which the House of Representatives does not agree or is neither passed (with or without amendment) nor rejected by the Senate within the stated period, the Bill is, if the House of Representatives so resolves within one hundred and eighty days after the expiration of the stated period deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament on the day on which the resolution is passed.
(1.2) The stated period is the period of ninety days commencing on the day on which the Bill is first sent by the House of Representatives to the Senate or any longer period agreed upon in respect of the Bill by both Houses of Parliament.
(2.1) The preceding section of this article applies to a Bill which is initiated in and passed by the Senate, amended by the House of Representatives, and accordingly deemed to have been initiated in the House of Representatives.
(2.2) For the purpose of this application the stated period in relation to such a Bill commences on the day on which the Bill is first sent to the Senate after having been amended by the House of Representatives.
 
Article 24  [Certification, Urgency]
(1) If and whenever on the passage by the House of Representatives of any Bill, other than a Bill expressed to be a Bill containing a proposal to amend the Constitution, the Prime Minister certifies by messages in writing addressed to the President and to the Chairman of each House of Parliament that, in the opinion of the Government, the Bill is urgent and immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace and security, or by reason of the existence of a public emergency, whether domestic or international, the time for the consideration of such Bill by the Senate is, if the House of Representatives so resolves and if the President, after consultation with the Council of State, concurs, abridged to such period as is specified in the resolution.
(2) Where a Bill, the time for the consideration of which by the Senate has been abridged under this article,
(a) is, in the case of a Bill which is not a Money Bill, rejected by the Senate or passed by the Senate with amendments to which the House of Representatives does not agree or neither passed nor rejected by the Senate, or
(b) is, in the case of a Money Bill, either returned by the Senate to the House of Representatives with recommendations which the House of Representatives does not accept or is not returned by the Senate to the House of Representatives, within the period specified in the resolution, the Bill is deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament at the expiration of that period.
(3) When a Bill the time for the consideration of which by the Senate has been abridged under this article becomes law it remains in force for a period of ninety days from the date of its enactment and no longer unless, before the expiration of that period, both Houses have agreed that such law remains in force for a longer period and the longer period so agreed upon has been specified in resolutions passed by both Houses.
 

[Part 7]  Signing and Promulgation of Laws

 
Article 25  [Promulgation]
(1) As soon as any Bill, other than a Bill expressed to be a Bill containing a proposal for the amendment of this Constitution, has been passed or deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament, the Prime Minister presents it to the President for his signature and for promulgation by him as a law in accordance with the provisions of this article.
(2.1) Save as otherwise provided by this Constitution, every Bill so presented to the President for his signature and for promulgation by him as a law is signed by the President not earlier than the fifth and not later than the seventh day after the date on which the Bill has been presented to him.
(2.2) At the request of the Government, with the prior concurrence of the Senate, the President may sign any Bill the subject of such request on a date which is earlier than the fifth day after such date as aforesaid
(3) Every Bill the time for the consideration of which by the Senate has been abridged under Article 24 is signed by the President on the day on which such Bill is presented to him for signature and promulgation as a law.
(4.1) Every Bill becomes and is law as on and from the day on which it is signed by the President under this Constitution, and comes, unless the contrary intention appears, into operation on that day.
(4.2) Every Bill signed by the President under this Constitution is promulgated by him as a law by the publication by his direction of a notice in the Government Gazette stating that the Bill has become law.
(4.3) Every Bill is signed by the President in the text in which it was passed or deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament, and if a Bill is so passed or deemed to have been passed in both the official languages, the President signs the text of the Bill in each of those languages.
(4.4) Where the President signs the text of a Bill in one only of the official languages, an official translation is issued in the other official language.
(4.5) As soon as may be after the signature and promulgation of a Bill as a law, the text of such law which was signed by the President or, where the President has signed the text of such law in each of the official languages, both the signed texts are enrolled for record in the office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court, and the text, or both the texts, so enrolled are conclusive evidence of the provisions of such law.
(4.6) In case of conflict between the texts of a law enrolled under this section in both the official languages, the text in the national language prevails.
(5.1) It is lawful for the Prime Minister, from time to time as occasion appears to him to require, to cause to be prepared under his supervision a text (in both the official languages) of this Constitution as then in force embodying all amendments theretofore made therein.
(5.2) A copy of every text so prepared, when authenticated by the signatures of the Prime Minister and the Chief Justice, is signed by the President and is enrolled for record in the office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court.
(5.3) The copy so signed and enrolled which is for the time being the latest text so prepared is, upon such enrolment, conclusive evidence of this Constitution as at the date of such enrolment and for that purpose supersedes all texts of this Constitution of which copies were previously so enrolled.
(5.4) In case of conflict between the texts of any copy of this Constitution enrolled under this section, the text in the national language prevails.
 

[Part 8]  Reference of Bills to the Supreme Court

 
Article 26  [Review]
(0) This article applies to any Bill passed or deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament other than a Money Bill, or a Bill expressed to be a Bill containing a proposal to amend the Constitution, or a Bill the time for the consideration of which by the Senate has been abridged under Article 24.
(1.1) The President may, after consultation with the Council of State, refer any Bill to which this article applies to the Supreme Court for a decision on the question as to whether such Bill or any specified provision or provisions of such Bill is or are repugnant to this Constitution or to any provision thereof.
(1.2) Every such reference is made not later than the seventh day after the date on which such Bill have been presented by the Prime Minister to the President for his signature.
(1.3) The President may not sign any Bill the subject of a reference to the Supreme Court under this article pending the pronouncement of the decision of the Court.
(2.1) The Supreme Court consisting of not less than five judges considers every question referred to it by the President under this article for a decision, and, having heard arguments by or on behalf of the Attorney General and by counsel assigned by the Court, pronounces its decision on such question in open court as soon as may be, and in any case not later than sixty days after the date of such reference.
(2.2) The decision of the majority of the judges of the Supreme Court is, for the purposes of this article, the decision of the Court and is pronounced by such one of those judges as the Court directs, and no other opinion, whether assenting or dissenting, is pronounced nor is the existence of any such other opinion disclosed.
(3.1) In every case in which the Supreme Court decides that any provision of a Bill the subject of a reference to the Supreme Court under this article is repugnant to this Constitution or to any provision thereof, the President declines to sign such Bill.
(3.2) If, in the case of a Bill to which Article 27 applies, a petition has been addressed to the President under that article, that article is complied with.
(3.3) In every other case the President signs the Bill as soon as may be after the date on which the decision of the Supreme Court has been pronounced.
 

[Part 9]  Reference of Bills to the People

 
Article 27  [Request of Veto]
(0) This article applies to any Bill, other than a Bill expressed to be a Bill containing a proposal for the amendment of this Constitution, which has been deemed, by virtue of Article 23 hereof, to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament.
(1) A majority of the members of the Senate and not less than one-third of the members of the House of Representatives may by a joint petition addressed to the President by them under this article request the President to decline to sign and promulgate as a law any Bill to which this article applies on the ground that the Bill contains a proposal of such national importance that the will of the people thereon ought to be ascertained.
(2) Every such petition is in writing and is signed by the petitioners whose signatures are verified in the manner prescribed by law.
(3) Every such petition contains a statement of the particular ground or grounds on which the request is based, and is presented to the President not later than four days after the date on which the Bill has been deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament.
(4.1) Upon receipt of a petition addressed to him under this article, the President forthwith considers such petition and, after consultation with the Council of State, pronounces his decision thereon not later than ten days after the date on which the Bill to which such petition relates has been deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament.
(4.2) If the Bill or any provision thereof is or has been referred to the Supreme Court under Article 26, it may not be obligatory on the President to consider the petition unless or until the Supreme Court has pronounced a decision on such reference to the effect that the said Bill or the said provision thereof is not repugnant to this Constitution or to any provision thereof, and, if a decision to that effect is pronounced by the Supreme Court, it may not be obligatory on the President to pronounce his decision on the petition before the expiration of six days after the day on which the decision of the Supreme Court to the effect aforesaid is pronounced.
(5.1) In every case in which the President decides that a Bill the subject of a petition under this article contains a proposal of such national importance that the will of the people thereon ought to be ascertained, he informs the Prime Minister and the Chairman of each House of Parliament accordingly in writing under his hand and Seal and declines to sign and promulgate such Bill as a law unless and until the proposal has been approved either
(i) by the people at a Referendum in accordance with the provisions of Article 47 (2) within a period of eighteen months from the date of the President's decision, or
(ii) by a resolution of the House of Representatives passed within the said period after a dissolution and reassembly of the House of Representatives.
(5.2) Whenever a proposal contained in a Bill the subject of a petition under this article has been approved either by the people or by a resolution of the House of Representatives in accordance with the foregoing provisions of this section, such Bill is as soon as may be after such approval presented to the President for his signature and promulgation by him as a law and the President thereupon signs the Bill and duly promulgate it as a law.
(6) In every case in which the President decides that a Bill the subject of a petition under this article does not contain a proposal of such national importance that the will of the people thereon ought to be ascertained, he informs the Prime Minister and the Chairman of each House of Parliament accordingly in writing under his hand and Seal, and such Bill is signed by the President not later than eleven days after the date on which the Bill has been deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament and is duly promulgated by him as a law.
 

[Chapter V]  The Government

 
Article 28  [Constitution, Functions]
(1) The Government525 consists of not less than seven and not more than fifteen members who are appointed by the President in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.
(2) The executive power of the State is, subject to the provisions of this Constitution, exercised by or on the authority of the Government.
(3.1) War is not declared and the State may not participate in any war save with the assent of the House of Representatives.
(3.2) In the case of actual invasion, however, the Government may take whatever steps they may consider necessary for the protection of the State, and the House of Representatives if not sitting is summoned to meet at the earliest practicable date.
(3.3) Nothing in this Constitution is invoked to invalidate any law enacted by Parliament which is expressed to be for the purpose of securing the public safety and the preservation of the State in time of war or armed rebellion, or to nullify any act done or purporting to be done in time of war or armed rebellion in pursuance of any such law. In this subsection "time of war" includes a time when there is taking place an armed conflict in which the State is not a participant but in respect of which each of the Houses of Parliament have resolved that, arising out of such armed conflict, a national emergency exists affecting the vital interests of the State and "time of war or armed rebellion" includes such time after the termination of any war, or of any such armed conflict as aforesaid, or of an armed rebellion, as may elapse until each of the Houses of Parliament have resolved that the national emergency occasioned by such war, armed conflict, or armed rebellion has ceased to exist.5255
(4.1) The Government is responsible to the House of Representatives.
(4.2) The Government meets and acts collective authority, and is collectively responsible for the Departments of State administered by the members of the Government.
(4.3) The confidentiality of discussions at meetings of the Government is respected in all circumstances save only where the High Court determines that disclosure should be made in respect of a particular matter --
(i) in the interests of the administration of justice by a Court, or
(ii) by virtue of an overriding public interest, pursuant to an application in that behalf by a tribunal appointed by the Government or a Minister of the Government on the authority of the Houses of Parliament to inquire into a matter stated by them to be of public importance.
(4.4) The Government prepares Estimates of the Receipts and Estimates of the Expenditure of the State for each financial year, and presents them to the House of Representatives for consideration.
(5.1) The head of the Government is called, and is in this Constitution referred to, as the Prime Minister.
(5.2) The Prime Minister keeps the President generally informed on matters of domestic and international policy.
(6.1) The Prime Minister nominates a member of the Government to be the Vice Prime Minister.
(6.2) The Vice Prime Minister acts for all purposes in the place of the Prime Minister if the Prime Minister should die, or become permanently incapacitated, until a new Prime Minister has been appointed.
(6.3) The Vice Prime Minister also acts for or in the place of the Prime Minister during the temporary absence of the Prime Minister.
(7.1) The Prime Minister, the Vice Prime Minister and the member of the Government who is in charge of the Department of Finance must be members of the House of Representatives.
(7.2) The other members of the Government must be members of the House of Representatives or the Senate, but not more than two may be members of the Senate.
(8) Every member of the Government has the right to attend and be heard in each House of Parliament.
(9.1) The Prime Minister may resign from office at any time by placing his resignation in the hands of the President.
(9.2) Any other member of the Government may resign from office by placing his resignation in the hands of the Prime Minister for submission to the President.
(9.3) The President accepts the resignation of a member of the Government, other than the Prime Minister, if so advised by the Prime Minister.
(9.4) The Prime Minister may at any time, for reasons which to him seem sufficient, request a member of the Government to resign; should the member concerned fail to comply with the request, his appointment are terminated by the President if the Prime Minister so advises.
(10) The Prime Minister resigns from office upon his ceasing to retain the support of a majority in the House of Representatives unless on his advice the President dissolves the House of Representatives and on the reassembly of the House of Representatives after the dissolution the Prime Minister secures the support of a majority in the House of Representatives.
(11.1) If the Prime Minister at any time resigns from office the other members of the Government are deemed also to have resigned from office, but the Prime Minister and the other members of the Government continue to carry on their duties until their successors have been appointed.
(11.2) The members of the Government in office at the date of a dissolution of the House of Representatives continue to hold office until their successors have been appointed.
(12) The following matters are regulated in accordance with law, namely, the organization of, and distribution of business amongst, Departments of State, the designation of members of the Government to be the Ministers in charge of the said Departments, the discharge of the functions of the office of a member of the Government during his temporary absence or incapacity, and the remuneration of the members of the Government.
 

[Chapter VI]  Local Government

 
Article 28A  [Functions, Election]
(1) The State recognizes the role of local government in providing a forum for the democratic representation of local communities, in exercising and performing at local level powers and functions conferred by law and in promoting by its initiatives the interests of such communities.
(2) There is such directly elected local authorities as may be determined by law and their powers and functions are, subject to the provisions of this Constitution, so determined and are exercised and performed in accordance with law.
(3) Elections for members of such local authorities are held in accordance with law not later than the end of the fifth year after the year in which they were last held.
(4) Every citizen who has the right to vote at an election for members of the House of Representatives and such other persons as may be determined by law have the right to vote at an election for members of such of the local authorities referred to in section 2 of this Article as is determined by law.
(5) Casual vacancies in the membership of local authorities referred to in section 2 of this Article are filled in accordance with law.
 

[Chapter VII]  International Relations

 
Article 29  [Peace, Principles of International Law]
(1) Ireland affirms its devotion to the ideal of peace and friendly co-operation amongst nations founded on international justice and morality.
(2) Ireland affirms its adherence to the principle of the pacific settlement of international disputes by international arbitration or judicial determination.
(3) Ireland accepts the generally recognized principles of international law as its rule of conduct in its relations with other States.
(4.1) The executive power of the State in or in connection with its external relations is in accordance with Article 28 exercised by or on the authority of the Government.
(4.2) For the purpose of the exercise of any executive function of the State in or in connection with its external relations, the Government may to such extent and subject to such conditions, if any, as may be determined by law, avail of or adopt any organ, instrument, or method of procedure used or adopted for the like purpose by the members of any group or league of nations with which the State is or becomes associated for the purpose of international co-operation in matters of common concern.
(4.3) The State may become a member of the European Atomic Energy Community (established by Treaty signed at Rome on the 25th day of March, 1957).
(4.4) Ireland affirms its commitment to the European Union within which the member states of that Union work together to promote peace, shared values and the well-being of their peoples.
(4.5) The State may ratify the Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community, signed at Lisbon on the 13th day of December 2007 ("Treaty of Lisbon"), and may be a member of the European Union establishes by virtue of that Treaty.
(4.6) No provision of this Constitution invalidates laws enacted, acts done or measures adopted by the State, before, on or after the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, that are necessitated by the obligations of membership of the European Union refereed to in subsection 5 of this section or of the European Atomic Energy Community, or prevents laws enacted, acts done or measures adopted by-
(i) the said European Union or the European Atomic Energy Community, or institutions thereof,
(ii) the European Communities or European Union existing immediately before the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, or institutions thereof, or
(iii) bodies competent under the treaties referred to in this section,
from having the force of law in the State
(4.7) The State may exercise the options or discretions-
(i) to which Article 20 of the Treaty on European Union relating to enhanced cooperation applies,
(ii) under Protocol No. 19 on the Schengen acquis integrated into the framework of the European Union annexed to that treaty and to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (formerly known as the Treaty establishing the European Community), and
(iii) under Protocol No. 21 on the position of the United Kingdom and Ireland in respect of the area of freedom, security and justice, so annexed, including the option that the said Protocol No. 21 ceases, in whole or in part, to apply to the State, but any such exercise is subject to the prior approval of both Houses of Parliament.
(4.8) The State may agree to the decisions, regulations or other acts-
(i) under the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union authorizing the Council of the European Union to act other than by unanimity,
(ii) under those treaties authorizing the adoption of the ordinary legislative procedure, and
(iii) under subparagraph (d) of Article 82.2, the third subparagraph of Article 83.1 and paragraphs 1 and 4 of Article 86 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, relating to the area of freedom, security and justice, but the agreement to any such decision, regulation or act is subject to the prior approval of both Houses of Parliament.
(4.9) The State may not adopt a decision taken by the European Council to establish a common defense pursuant to Article 42 of the Treaty on European Union where that common defense would include the State.
(4.10) The State may ratify the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union done at Brussels on the 2nd day of March 2012. No provision of this Constitution invalidates laws enacted, acts done or measures adopted by the State that are necessitated by the obligations of the State under that Treaty or prevents laws enacted, acts done or measures adopted by bodies competent under that Treaty from having the force of law in the State.
(5.1) Every international agreement to which the State becomes a party is laid before the House of Representatives.
(5.2) The State is not bound by any international agreement involving a charge upon public funds unless the terms of the agreement have been approved by the House of Representatives.
(5.3) This section may not apply to agreements or conventions of a technical and administrative character.
(6) No international agreement is part of the domestic law of the State save as may be determined by Parliament.
(7.1) The State may consent to be bound by the British-Irish Agreement done at Belfast on the 10th day of April, 1998, hereinafter called the Agreement.
(7.2) Any institution established by or under the Agreement may exercise the powers and functions thereby conferred on it in respect of all or any part of the island of Ireland notwithstanding any other provision of this Constitution conferring a like power or function on any person or any organ of State appointed under or created or established by or under this Constitution. Any power or function conferred on such an institution in relation to the settlement or resolution of disputes or controversies may be in addition to or in substitution for any like power or function conferred by this Constitution on any such person or organ of State as aforesaid.
(8) The State may exercise extra-territorial jurisdiction in accordance with the generally recognized principles of international law.
(9) The State may ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court done at Rome on the 17th day of July, 1998.
 

[Chapter VIII]  The Attorney General

 
Article 30  [Functions, Appointment]
(1) There is an Attorney General who is the adviser of the Government in matters of law and legal opinion, and exercises and performs all such powers, functions and duties as are conferred or imposed on him by this Constitution or by law.
(2) The Attorney General is appointed by the President on the nomination of the Prime Minister.
(3) All crimes and offenses prosecuted in any court constituted under Article 34 other than a court of summary jurisdiction are prosecuted in the name of the People and at the suit of the Attorney General or some other person authorized in accordance with law to act for that purpose.
(4) The Attorney General may not be a member of the Government.
(5.1) The Attorney General may at any time resign from office by placing his resignation in the hands of the Prime Minister for submission to the President.
(5.2) The Prime Minister may, for reasons which to him seem sufficient, request the resignation of the Attorney General.
(5.3) In the event of failure to comply with the request, the appointment of the Attorney General is terminated by the President if the Prime Minister so advises.
(5.4) The Attorney General retires from office upon the resignation of the Prime Minister, but may continue to carry on his duties until the successor to the Prime Minister has been appointed.
(6) Subject to the foregoing provisions of this article, the office of Attorney General, including the remuneration to be paid to the holder of the office, is regulated by law.
 

[Chapter IX]  The Council of State

 
Article 31  [Functions, Constitution]
(1) There is a Council of State to aid and counsel the President on all matters on which the President may consult the said Council in relation to the exercise and performance by him of such of his powers and functions as are by this Constitution expressed to be exercisable and performable after consultation with the Council of State, and to exercise such other functions as are conferred on the said Council by this Constitution.
(2) The Council of State consists of the following members:
(i) As ex-officio members: the Prime Minister, the Vice Prime Minister, the Chief Justice, the President of the High Court, the Chairman of the House of Representatives, the Chairman of the Senate, and the Attorney General.
(ii) Every person able and willing to act as a member of the Council of State who has held the office of President, or the office of Prime Minister, or the office of Chief Justice, or the office of President of the Executive Council of Ireland.
(iii) Such other persons, if any, as may be appointed by the President under this article to be members of the Council of State.
(3) The President may at any time and from time to time by warrant under his hand and Seal appoint such other persons as, in his absolute discretion, he may think fit, to be members of the Council of State, but not more than seven persons so appointed are members of the Council of State at the same time.
(4) Every member of the Council of State takes and subscribes at the first meeting thereof which he attends as a member a declaration in the following form:
"In the presence of Almighty God I, , do solemnly and sincerely promise and declare that I will faithfully and conscientiously fulfill my duties as a member of the Council of State."
(5) Every member of the Council of State appointed by the President, unless he previously dies, resigns, becomes permanently incapacitated, or is removed from office, holds office until the successor of the President by whom he was appointed has entered upon his office.
(6) Any member of the Council of State appointed by the President may resign from office by placing his resignation in the hands of the President.
(7) The President may, for reasons which to him seem sufficient, by an order under his hand and Seal, terminate the appointment of any member of the Council of State appointed by him.
(8) Meetings of the Council of State may be convened by the President at such times and places as he determines.
 
Article 32  [Consultation]
The President may not exercise or perform any of the powers or functions which are by this Constitution expressed to be exercisable or performable by him after consultation with the Council of State unless, and on every occasion before so doing, he has convened a meeting of the Council of State and the members present at such meeting have been heard by him.
 

[Chapter X]  The Comptroller and Auditor General

 
Article 33  [Functions, Appointment]
(1) There are a Comptroller and Auditor General to control on behalf of the State all disbursements and to audit all accounts of moneys administered by or under the authority of Parliament.
(2) The Comptroller and Auditor General are appointed by the President on the nomination of the House of Representatives.
(3) The Comptroller and Auditor General may not be a member of either House of Parliament and may not hold any other office or position of emolument.
(4) The Comptroller and Auditor General report to the House of Representatives at stated periods as determined by law.
(5.1) The Comptroller and Auditor General are not removed from office except for stated misbehavior or incapacity, and then only upon resolutions passed by the House of Representatives and by the Senate calling for his removal.
(5.2) The Prime Minister duly notifies the President of any such resolutions as aforesaid passed by the House of Representatives and by the Senate and sends him a copy of each such resolution certified by the Chairman of the House of Parliament by which it has been passed.
(5.3) Upon receipt of such notification and of copies of such resolutions, the President forthwith, by an order under his hand and Seal, removes the Comptroller and Auditor General from office.
(6) Subject to the foregoing, the terms and conditions of the office of Comptroller and Auditor General are determined by law.
 

[Chapter XI]  The Courts

 
Article 34  [Publicity]
(1) Justice is administered in courts541 established by law by judges appointed in the manner provided by this Constitution, and, save in such special and limited cases as may be prescribed by law, is administered in public.
(2) The Courts comprise:
(i) Courts of First Instance;
(ii) a Court of Appeal; and
(iii) a Court of Final Appeal.
(3.1) The Courts of First Instance include a High Court invested with full original jurisdiction in and power to determine all matters and questions whether of law or fact, civil or criminal.
(3.2) Save as otherwise provided by this article, the jurisdiction of the High Court extends to the question of the validity of any law having regard to the provisions of this Constitution, and no such question is raised (whether by pleading, argument or otherwise) in any Court established under this or any other article of this Constitution other than the High Court, the Court of Appeal or the Supreme Court.
(3.3) No Court whatever has jurisdiction to question the validity of a law, or any provision of a law, the Bill for which has been referred to the Supreme Court by the President under Article 26, or to question the validity of a provision of a law where the corresponding provision in the Bill for such law has been referred to the Supreme Court by the President under the said Article 26.
(3.4) The Courts of First Instance also include Courts of local and limited jurisdiction with a right of appeal as determined by law.
(4.1) The Court of Appeal --
(i) saves as otherwise provided by this Article, and
(ii) with such exceptions and subject to such regulations as may be prescribed by law,
has appellate jurisdiction from all decisions of the High Court, and also has appellate jurisdiction from such decisions of other courts as may be prescribed by law.
(4.2) No law is enacted excepting from the appellate jurisdiction of the Court of Appeal cases which involve questions as to the validity of any law having regard to the provisions of this Constitution.
(4.3) The decision of the Court of Appeal is final and conclusive, save as otherwise provided by this Article.
(5.1) The Court of Final Appeal is called the Supreme Court.
(5.2) The president of the Supreme Court is called the Chief Justice.
(5.3) The Supreme Court has, subject to such regulations as may be prescribed by law, appellate jurisdiction from a decision of the Court of Appeal if the Supreme Court is satisfied that-
(i) the decision involves a matter of general public importance, or
(ii) in the interests of justice it is necessary that there be an appeal to the Supreme Court.
(5.4) Notwithstanding section 4.1 hereof, the Supreme Court has, subject to such regulations as may be prescribed by law, appellate jurisdiction from a decision of the High Court if the Supreme Court is satisfied that there are exceptional circumstances warranting a direct appeal to it, and a precondition for the Supreme Court being so satisfied is the presence of either or both of the following factors:
(i) the decision involves a matter of general public importance;
(ii) the interest of justice.
(5.5) No law is enacted excepting from the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court cases which involve questions as to the validity of any law having regard to the provisions of this Constitution.
(5.6) The decision of the Supreme Court is in all cases final and conclusive.
(6.1) Every person appointed a judge under this Constitution makes and subscribes the following declaration:
"In the presence of Almighty God I, , do solemnly and sincerely promise and declare that I will duly and faithfully and to the best of my knowledge and power execute the office of Chief Justice (or as the case may be) without fear or favor, affection or ill-will towards any man, and that I will uphold the Constitution and the laws. May God direct and sustain me."
(6.2) This declaration is made and subscribed by the Chief Justice in the presence of the President, and by each of the other judges of the Supreme Court, the judges of the Court of Appeal, the judges of the High Court and the judges of every other Court in the presence of the Chief Justice or the senior available judge of the Supreme Court in open court.
(6.3) The declaration is made and subscribed by every judge before entering upon duties as such judge, and in any case not later than ten days after the date of his appointment or such later date as may be determined by the President.
(6.4) Any judge who declines or neglects to make such declaration as aforesaid is deemed to have vacated his office.
 
Article 35  [Judges by Appointment]
(1) The judges of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal, the High Court and all other Courts established in pursuance of Article 34 hereof are appointed by the President.
(2) All judges are independent5421 in the exercise of their judicial functions and subject only to this Constitution and the law.
(3) No judge is eligible to be a member of either House of Parliament or to hold any other office or position of emolument.
(4.1) A judge of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal or the High Court is not removed from office except for stated misbehavior or incapacity, and then only upon resolutions passed by the House of Representatives and by the Senate calling for his removal.
(4.2) The Prime Minister duly notifies the President of any such resolutions passed by the House of Representatives and by the Senate, and sends him a copy of every such resolution certified by the Chairman of the House of Parliament by which it has been passed.
(4.3) Upon receipt of such notification and of copies of such resolutions, the President removes forthwith, by an order under his hand and Seal, from office the judge to whom they relate.
(5.1) The remuneration of judges is not reduced during their continuance in office save in accordance with this section.
(5.2) The remuneration of judges is subject to the imposition of taxes, levies or other charges that are imposed by law on persons generally or persons belonging to a particular class.
(5.3) Where, before or after the enactment of this section, reductions have been or are made by law to the remuneration of persons belonging to classes of persons whose remuneration is paid out of public money and such law states that those reductions are in the public interest, provision may also be made by law to make proportionate reductions to the remuneration of judges.
 
Article 36  [Organization by Law]
Subject to the foregoing provisions of this Constitution relating to the Courts, the following matters are regulated in accordance with law, that is to say:
(i) the number of judges of the Supreme Court, of the Court of Appeal, and of the High Court, the remuneration, age of retirement and pensions of such judges,
(ii) the number of the judges of all other Courts, and their terms of appointment, and
(iii) the constitution and organization of the said Courts, the distribution of jurisdiction and business among the said Courts and judges, and all matters of procedure.
 
Article 37  [No Invalidation]
(1) Nothing in this Constitution operates to invalidate the exercise of limited functions and powers of a judicial nature, in matters other than criminal matters, by any person or body of persons duly authorized by law to exercise such functions and powers, notwithstanding that such person or such body of persons is not a judge or a court appointed or established as such under this Constitution.
(2) No adoption of a person taking effect or expressed to take effect at any time after the coming into operation of this Constitution under laws enacted by Parliament and being an adoption pursuant to an order made or an authorization given by any person or body of persons designated by those laws to exercise such functions and powers was or is invalid by reason only of the fact that such person or body of persons was not a judge or a court appointed or established as such under this Constitution.
 

[Chapter XII]  Trial of Offenses

 
Article 38  [Due Process]
(1) No person is tried on any criminal charge save in due course of law.
(2) Minor offenses may be tried by courts of summary jurisdiction.
(3.1) Special courts may be established by law for the trial of offenses in cases where it may be determined in accordance with such law that the ordinary courts are inadequate to secure the effective the effective administration of justice, and the preservation of public peace and order.
(3.2) The constitution, powers, jurisdiction and procedure of such special courts are prescribed by law.
(4.1) Military tribunals may be established for the trial of offenses against military law alleged to have been committed by persons while subject to military law and also to deal with a state of war or armed rebellion.
(4.2) A member of the Defence Forces not on active service is not tried by any court martial or other military tribunal for an offence cognisable by the civil courts unless such offence is within the jurisdiction of any court martial or other military tribunal under any law for the enforcement of military discipline.
(5) Save in the case of the trial of offenses under Section (2), (3) or (4) no person is tried on any criminal charge without a jury.
(6) The provisions of Articles 34 and 35 may not apply to any court or tribunal set up under Section (3) or (4) of this article.
 
Article 39  [Treason]
Treason consists only in levying war against the State, or assisting any State or person or inciting or conspiring with any person to levy war against the State, or attempting by force of arms or other violent means to overthrow the organs of government established by this Constitution, or taking part or being concerned in or inciting or conspiring with any person to make or to take part or be concerned in any such attempt.
 

[Chapter XIII]  Fundamental Rights

 

[Part 1]  Personal Rights

 
Article 40  [Personal Rights]
(1) All citizens are, as human persons, held equal before the law.63 This is not held to mean that the State may not in its enactments have due regard to differences of capacity, physical and moral, and of social function.
(2.1) Titles of nobility are not conferred by the State.
(2.2) No title of nobility or of honor may be accepted by any citizen except with the prior approval of the Government.
(3.1) The State guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate the personal rights of the citizen.62
(3.2) The State vindicates, in particular, by its laws protect as best it may from unjust attack and, in the case of injustice done, the life, person, good name, and property rights of every citizen.
(3.3) The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.  This subsection may not limit freedom to travel between the State and another state.  This subsection may not limit freedom to obtain or make available, in the State, subject to such conditions as may be laid down by law, information relating to services lawfully available in another state.
(4.1) No citizen is deprived of his personal liberty save in accordance with law.
(4.2) Upon complaint being made by or on behalf of any person to the High Court or any judge thereof alleging that such person is being unlawfully detained, the High Court and any and every judge thereof to whom such complaint is made forthwith enquires into the said complaint and may order the person in whose custody such person is detained to produce the body of such person before the High Court on a named day and to certify in writing the grounds of his detention, and the High Court orders, upon the body of such person being produced before that Court and after giving the person in whose custody he is detained an opportunity of justifying the detention, the release of such person from such detention unless satisfied that he is being detained in accordance with the law.
(4.3) Where the body of a person alleged to be unlawfully detained is produced before the High Court in pursuance of an order in that behalf made under this section and that Court is satisfied that such person is being detained in accordance with a law but that such law is invalid having regard to the provisions of this Constitution, the High Court refers the question of the validity of such law to the Supreme Court by way of case stated and may, at the time of such reference or at any time thereafter, allow the said person to be at liberty on such bail and subject to such conditions as the High Court fixes until the Supreme Court has determined the question so referred to it.
(4.4) The High Court before which the body of a person alleged to be unlawfully detained is to be produced in pursuance of an order in that behalf made under this section consist, if the President of the High Court or, if he is not available, the senior judge of that Court who is available so directs in respect of any particular case, of three judges and consist, in every other case, of one judge only.
(4.5) Nothing in this section, however, is invoked to prohibit, control, or interfere with any act of the Defense Forces during the existence of a state of war or armed rebellion.
(4.6) Provision may be made by law for the refusal of bail by a court to a person charged with a serious offense where it is reasonably considered necessary to prevent the commission of a serious offense by that person.
(5) The dwelling of every citizen is inviolable and is not forcibly entered save in accordance with law.
(6.1) The State guarantees liberty for the exercise of the following rights, subject to public order and morality:--
(i) The right of the citizens to express freely their convictions and opinions.6242
The education of public opinion being, however, a matter of such grave import to the common good, the State endeavors to ensure that organs of public opinion, such as the radio, the press, the cinema, while preserving their rightful liberty of expression, including criticism of Government policy, is not used to undermine public order or morality or the authority of the State.
The publication or utterance of blasphemous, seditious, or indecent matter is an offence which is punishable in accordance with law.
(ii) The right of the citizens to assemble peaceably and without arms.
Provision may be made by law to prevent or control meetings which are determined in accordance with law to be calculated to cause a breach of the peace or to be a danger or nuisance to the general public and to prevent or control meetings in the vicinity of either House of Parliament.
(iii) The right of the citizens to form associations and unions.
Laws, however, may be enacted for the regulation and control in the public interest of the exercise of the foregoing right.
(6.2) Laws regulating the manner in which the right of forming associations and unions and the right of free assembly may be exercised contain no political, religious or class discrimination.
 

[Part 2]  The Family

 
Article 41  [Family]
(1.1) The State recognizes the Family as the natural primary and fundamental unit group of Society, and as a moral institution possessing inalienable and imprescriptible rights, antecedent and superior to all positive law.
(1.2) The State, therefore, guarantees to protect the Family in its constitution and authority, as the necessary basis of social order and as indispensable to the welfare of the Nation and the State.
(2.1) In particular, the State recognizes that by her life within the home, woman gives to the State a support without which the common good cannot be achieved.
(2.2) The State, therefore, endeavors to ensure that mothers are not obliged by economic necessity to engage in labor to the neglect of their duties in the home.
(3.1) The State pledges itself to guard with special care the institution of Marriage, on which the Family is founded, and to protect it against attack.
(3.2) A Court designated by law may grant a dissolution of marriage where, but only where, it is satisfied that -
(i) at the date of the institution of the proceedings, the spouses have lived apart from one another for a period of, or periods amounting to, at least four years during the previous five years,
(ii) there is no reasonable prospect of a reconciliation between the spouses,
(iii) such provision as the Court considers proper having regard to the circumstances exists or will be made for the spouses, any children of either or both of them and any other person prescribed by law, and
(iv) any further conditions prescribed by law are complied with. 
(3.3) No person whose marriage has been dissolved under the civil law of any other State but is a subsisting valid marriage under the law for the time being in force within the jurisdiction of the Government and Parliament established by this Constitution is capable of contracting a valid marriage within that jurisdiction during the lifetime of the other party to the marriage so dissolved.
(4) Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex.
 

[Part 2]  Education

 
Article 42  [Education]
(1) The State acknowledges that the primary and natural educator of the child is the Family and guarantees to respect the inalienable right and duty of parents to provide, according to their means, for the religious and moral, intellectual, physical and social education of their children.
(2) Parents are free to provide this education in their homes or in private schools or in schools recognized or established by the State.
(3.1) The State may not oblige parents in violation of their conscience and lawful preference to send their children to schools established by the State, or to any particular type of school designated by the State.
(3.2) The State, however, as guardian of the common good, requires in view of actual conditions that the children receive a certain minimum education, moral, intellectual and social.
(4) The State provides for free primary education and endeavors to supplement and give reasonable aid to private and corporate educational initiative, and, when the public good requires it, provide other educational facilities or institutions with due regard, however, for the rights of parents, especially in the matter of religious and moral formation .
(5) In exceptional cases, where the parents for physical or moral reasons fail in their duty towards their children, the State as guardian of the common good, by appropriate means endeavors to supply the place of the parents, but always with due regard for the natural and imprescriptible rights of the child.
 

[Part 3]  Children

 
Article 42A  [Children]
(1) The State recognizes and affirms the natural and imprescriptible rights of all children and, as far as practicable, by its laws protects and vindicates those rights.
(2.1) In exceptional cases, where the parents, regardless of their marital status, fail in their duty towards their children to such an extent that the safety or welfare of any of their children is likely to be prejudicially affected, the State as guardian of the common good, by proportionate means as provided by law, endeavors to supply the place of parents, but always due regard for the natural and imprescriptible rights of the child.
(2.2) Provision are made by law for the adoption of any child where the parents have failed for such a period of time as may be prescribed by law in their duty towards the child and where the best interests of the child so require.
(3) Provision are made by law for the voluntary placement for adoption and the adoption of any child.
(4.1) Provision are made by law that in the resolution of all proceedings-
(i) brought by the State, as guardian of the common good, for the purpose of preventing the safety and welfare of any child from being prejudicially affected, or
(ii) concerning the adoption, guardianship or custody of, or access to, any child,
the best interests of the child are the paramount consideration.
(4.2) Provision are made by law for securing, as far as practicable, that in all proceedings referred to in subsection 1 of this section in respect of any child who is capable of forming his or her own views, the views of the child are ascertained and given due weight having regard to the age and maturity of the child.
 

[Part 4]  Private Property

 
Article 43  [Private Property]
(1.1) The State acknowledges that man, in virtue of his rational being, has the natural right, antecedent to positive law, to the private ownership of external goods.622
(1.2) The State accordingly guarantees to pass no law attempting to abolish the right of private ownership or the general right to transfer, bequeath, and inherit property.
(2.1) The State recognizes, however, that the exercise of the rights mentioned in the foregoing provisions of this article ought, in civil society, to be regulated by the principles of social justice.
(2.2) The State, accordingly, may as occasion requires delimit by law the exercise of the said rights with a view to reconciling their exercise with the exigencies of the common good.
 

[Part 5]  Religion

 
Article 44  [Religion]
(1) The State acknowledges that the homage of public worship is due to Almighty God.  It holds His Name in reverence, and respects and honors religion.
(2.1) Freedom of conscience and the free profession and practice of religion are, subject to public order and morality, guaranteed to every citizen.623
(2.2) The State guarantees not to endow any religion.
(2.3) The State may not impose any disabilities or make any discrimination on the ground of religious profession, belief or status.
(2.4) Legislation providing State aid for schools may not discriminate between schools under the management of different religious denominations, nor be such as to affect prejudicially the right of any child to attend a school receiving public money without attending religious instruction at that school.
(2.5) Every religious denomination has the right to manage its own affairs, own, acquire and administer property, movable and immovable, and maintain institutions for religious or charitable purposes.
(2.6) The property of any religious denomination or any educational institution is not diverted save for necessary works of public utility and on payment of compensation.
 

[Chapter XIV]  Directive Principles of Social Policy

 
Article 45  [Social Policy]
(0) The principles of social policy set forth in this article are intended for the general guidance of Parliament. The application of those principles in the making of laws is the care of Parliament exclusively, and is not cognisable by any Court under any of the provisions of this Constitution.
(1) The State strives to promote the welfare of the whole people by securing and protecting as effectively as it may a social order in which justice and charity inform all the institutions of the national life.
(2) The State directs, in particular, its policy towards securing:
(i) That the citizens (all of whom, men and women equally, have the right to an adequate means of livelihood) may through their occupations find the means of making reasonable provision for their domestic needs.
(ii) That the ownership and control of the material resources of the community may be so distributed amongst private individuals and the various classes as best to serve the common good.
(iii) That, especially, the operation of free competition is not allowed so to develop as to result in the concentration of the ownership or control of essential commodities in a few individuals to the common detriment.
(iv) That in what pertains to the control of credit the constant and predominant aim is the welfare of the people as a whole.
(v) That there may be established on the land in economic security as many families as in the circumstances is practicable.
(3.1) The State favors and, where necessary, supplements private initiative in industry and commerce.
(3.2) The State endeavors to secure that private enterprise is so conducted as to ensure reasonable efficiency in the production and distribution of goods and as to protect the public against unjust exploitation.
(4.1) The State pledges itself to safeguard with especial care the economic interests of the weaker sections of the community, and, where necessary, to contribute to the support of the infirm, the widow, the orphan, and the aged.
(4.2) The State endeavors to ensure that the strength and health of workers, men and women, and the tender age of children are not abused and that citizens are not forced by economic necessity to enter avocations unsuited to their sex, age or strength.
 

[Chapter XV]  Amendment of the Constitution

 
Article 46  [Amendment]
(1) Any provision of this Constitution may be amended, whether by way of variation, addition, or repeal, in the manner provided by this article.
(2) Every proposal for an amendment of this Constitution is initiated in the House of Representatives as a Bill, and is upon having been passed or deemed to have been passed by both Houses of Parliament, submitted by Referendum to the decision of the people in accordance with the law for the time being in force relating to the Referendum.
(3) Every such Bill is expressed to be "An Act to amend the Constitution".
(4) A Bill containing a proposal or proposals for the amendment of this Constitution may not contain any other proposal.
(5) A Bill containing a proposal for the amendment of this Constitution is signed by the President forthwith upon his being satisfied that the provisions of this article have been complied with in respect thereof and that such proposal has been duly approved by the people in accordance with the provisions of Article 47 (1) and is duly promulgated by the President as a law.
 

[Chapter XVI]  The Referendum

 
Article 47  [Referendum]
(1) Every proposal for an amendment of this Constitution which is submitted by Referendum to the decision of the people is, for the purpose of Article 46, held to have been approved by the people, if, upon having been so submitted, a majority of the votes cast at such Referendum has been cast in favor of its enactment into law.
(2.1) Every proposal, other than a proposal to amend the Constitution, which is submitted by Referendum to the decision of the people is held to have been vetoed by the people if a majority of the votes cast at such Referendum has been cast against its enactment into law and if the votes so cast against its enactment into law have amounted to not less than thirty-three and one-third per cent of the voters on the register.
(2.2) Every proposal, other than a proposal to amend the Constitution, which is submitted by Referendum to the decision of the people is for the purposes of Article 27 hereof held to have been approved by the people unless vetoed by them in accordance with the provisions of the foregoing subsection of this section.
(3) Every citizen who has the right to vote at an election for members of the House of Representatives has the right to vote at a Referendum.
(4) Subject as aforesaid, the Referendum is regulated by law.
 

[Chapter XVII]  Repeal of Constitution of Saorstát Éireann and Continuance of Laws

 
Article 48  [Repeal of Old Constitution]
The Constitution of Ireland in force immediately prior to the date of the coming into operation of this Constitution and the Constitution of the Irish Free State (Ireland) Act. 1922, in so far as that Act or any provision thereof is then in force are and are hereby repealed as on and from that date.
 
Article 49  [Repeal of Powers]
(1) All powers, functions, rights and prerogatives whatsoever exercisable in or in respect of Ireland immediately before the 11th day of December, 1936, whether in virtue of the Constitution then in force or otherwise, by the authority in which the executive power of Ireland was then vested are hereby declared to belong to the people.
(2) It is hereby enacted that, save to the extent to which provision is made by this Constitution or may hereafter be made by law for the exercise of any such power, function, right or prerogative by any of the organs established by this Constitution, the said powers, functions, rights and prerogatives are not exercised or capable of being exercised in or in respect of the State save only by or on the authority of the Government.
(3) The Government is the successors of the Government of Ireland as regards all property, assets, rights and liabilities.
 
Article 50  [Continuation of Old Laws]
(1) Subject to this Constitution and to the extent to which they are not inconsistent therewith, the laws in force in Ireland immediately prior to the date of the coming into operation of this Constitution continue to be of full force and effect until the same or any of them have been repealed or amended by enactment of Parliament.
(2) Laws enacted before, but expressed to come into force after, the coming into operation of this Constitution, come, unless otherwise enacted by Parliament, into force in accordance with the terms thereof.

For methodology see: Comparing Constitutions and International Constitutional Law.
© 1994 - April 3rd, 2016 / Thanks to A. Meister. / For corrections please contact A. Tschentscher.