The PSC was provided for in legislation in 1998 when it was introduced alongside the PPSN to replace the previous Revenue and Social Insurance number (RSI) and the Social Service Card (SSC).
The clear and stated objective as articulated in Oireachtas at that time was that the Public Services Card was not to be confined to welfare services but to act as an identifier for access to a broad range of public services.
Successive Governments have reaffirmed this policy both in Government decisions and through legislation.
With regard to the expiry date of the Public Services Card, the card that is issued on completion of SAFE registration is currently valid for up to 10 years. At renewal a new photograph is taken to update the new card and the PSI dataset. A person is only required to undertake a SAFE 2 registration process once.
A new PSC may also be required when a person's status changes, e.g., a person reaching the age of 66 will be automatically issued with a new card with 'free travel' functionality, enabling them to avail of free travel on public transport services.