The Civil Defence Act 2023 was signed by the President on 26th June 2023 and was commenced on 18th July 2023. The Act provides a consolidated modern legislative basis for Civil Defence.

Civil Defence previously operated under legislation that included the Air Raid Precautions Act 1939/1946, Local Government Acts of 1941 to 2001, various Statutory Instruments and the Civil Defence Act 2002/2012.

Under the Civil Defence Act 2002 a State Authority known as the Civil Defence Board was established to manage and develop Civil Defence at national level.
On 1st January 2013 the Civil Defence Board was dissolved in accordance with the Civil Defence Act 2012. The functions vested in the Civil Defence Board have been transferred back to the Minister for Defence.