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Get a Personal Public Service (PPS) Number

From: Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

What a Personal Public Service (PPS) Number is

A Personal Public Service (PPS) Number is a unique reference number that helps you access social welfare benefits, public services and information in Ireland.

Before you can be given a PPS Number, you must show that you need one. For example, if you are taking up employment, you need a PPS Number to register with Revenue.

You can find a list of State agencies that use PPS Numbers to identify individuals on this department's website.

A PPS Number is always 7 numbers followed by either one or two letters.

The PPS Number was formerly known as the Revenue and Social Insurance (RSI) number. If your number is the same as your spouse's number but your number has a W at the end, you may need a new PPS Number - see our page on the phasing out of W numbers for more information.

You can use your PPS Number for:

Your PPS Number can be found on tax documents and it is often on correspondence from a social welfare or tax office. It may also be on your payslip.


To get a PPS Number, you will need to provide evidence of your identity and evidence of why you need a PPS Number. You must also provide proof of your address.

Evidence of your identity:

    If you are: You will need to produce the following as evidence of your identity:
    An Irish citizen born in the Republic of Ireland The long version of your birth certificate and photographic ID, such as your passport or driving licence
    An Irish citizen via naturalisation or Foreign Birth Registration Your current passport or Certificate of Naturalisation OR your Foreign Birth Registration certificate AND Irish or UK driving licence or Irish learner driving permit
    An Irish citizen born in Northern Ireland or a UK citizen Current passport OR Your birth certificate showing your mother’s birth name AND current driving licence
    EU citizens (other than Irish and UK) Current passport or national identity card
    Non-EU citizens Current passport or 1951 Convention Travel Document

The following are not acceptable as evidence of your identity:

  • baptismal certificate
  • employment identity cards or personal letters
  • copies of certificates or documents
  • expired documents (For Irish and UK citizens, passports expired within the last 12 months may be accepted)

Evidence of your address

You need to show evidence of your address. You can use any of the following documents to do this.

The document must show your name and address and not be older than 3 months:

  • household utility bill
  • an official letter or document
  • a financial statement
  • property lease or tenancy agreement
  • confirmation of address by a third party such as a hotel or hostel administrator or manager, school principal or property owner*

*If you are staying with friends or relatives, an original household bill plus a note from the bill holder confirming your residency at the bill address is acceptable. This note can be written on the bill itself.

PPS Numbers for children

Children born in Ireland are usually given a PPS Number when their birth is registered with the General Register Office (GRO). This means you do not need to apply for a PPS Number for an Irish-born child. However, if the birth is not registered within 3 months, a parent or guardian must make an application - see 'Child application' below.

A PPS Number is not automatically allocated if both parents' addresses are outside of the State. If you need a PPS Number in such a case, then you must apply at a PPS Number Allocation Centre.

PPS Numbers for children living in, but not born in Ireland, must be applied for by the parent or guardian. One of the parents or guardians must have a PPS Number for the child to be registered and linked with their data.

Child application

The parent, foster parent or guardian should attend the PPS Number Allocation Centre with the child, and provide evidence of:

  • his or her own identity
  • the identity of the child
  • the requirement for a PPS Number
  • the relationship between the parent or guardian and the child

Evidence of address should also be provided.

This department may make further enquiries where it is considered necessary to confirm the relationship between the child and the person requesting a PPS Number.

A person aged less than 18 years is considered to be a child for PPS Number allocation purposes.

If you're moving to Ireland soon

Allocation of PPS Numbers is done by face-to-face interview. However, you can book an appointment for a PPS Number allocation interview before you move to Ireland - see 'Online appointments' below.

You should attend the PPS Number Allocation Centre in the county that you intend to live in.

Before you can be allocated a PPS Number, you must show that one is required for a transaction with a specified body.

You will be asked to produce documentary evidence of identity and address in Ireland. Different documentary evidence will be required, depending on your nationality. See 'Evidence of your identity:' above for a complete list.

If you need a PPS Number for a deceased person

Occasionally a PPS Number may be required for a deceased person, usually when dealing with grant of probate.

In such cases, you should send a copy of the death certificate and details about why the PPS Number is required to Client Identity Services - the address is available at the bottom of this page.


In person

A PPS Number has already been issued to you if you:

  • were born in Ireland in or after 1971
  • started work in Ireland after 1979
  • are getting a social welfare payment
  • are taking part in the Drugs Payment Scheme

Only this department can provide you with a PPS Number.

You can find a list of PPS Number Allocation Centres on the department's website.

Please note that some Centres operate an appointment only system. You should contact your local Centre to check if an appointment is required.

A Public Services Card is usually issued when you are allocated a PPS Number. This means that you will also have your photograph taken when you attend a Centre for registration of a new PPS Number. It will take approximately 4-5 days for notification of your PPS Number to arrive after your appointment. This letter is acceptable proof of one's number for transactions with specified bodies for public services.

If you are unable to attend because of illness or working abroad, then personal attendance at one of our PPS Number Allocation Centres is not necessary.

Please contact Client Identity Services to have the necessary documentation sent to you:

Client Identity Services

Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Shannon Lodge, Carrick-on-Shannon
(Note: the rates charged for using 1890 (Lo-call) numbers may vary)


If you want to get a PPS Number or to be registered for a Public Services Card, you can now make an appointment online at MyWelfare.ie.

You will first need to register with MyGovID. To do this you need an email address.

When you have made your appointment, print the notification and bring it to your appointment along with the required documents. These documents are listed in the notification.

You can access a list of PPS online registration centres.

If you do not know your PPS Number, contact your local Intreo Office or Social Welfare Branch Office and staff there can find your number for you.

If you are unsure as to whether a particular organisation, person or agent is entitled to request or use your PPS Number, you should contact Client Identity Services at:

Client Identity Services

Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Shannon Lodge, Carrick-on-Shannon
(Note: the rates charged for using 1890 (Lo-call) numbers may vary)

If you change your address you should write to the department at the above address giving your name, PPS Number, old and new address and evidence of your new address such as a utility bill. The department will then update your record.

Annual Allocations

The department issues PPS Numbers to individuals throughout the year and publishes details on the allocations.