The decision to move all PRSI services online has met with fierce criticism from a leading Galway TD, who said it is an impractical move with many areas of the State still without adequate broadband cover.
Fianna Fáil Galway West TD Éamon Ó Cuív has criticised the Government for “adding layers of bureaucracy” into the system for checking PRSI contributions and for “forcing people to do all their business online” when wishing to deal with the Department of Social Protection.
Previously, those approaching retirement age were able to write to the Department seeking an overview of their PRSI contributions to date. This option is no longer available. Instead a person must apply for a Public Services Card, fill out an application form to create a new user profile on the Department’s website, then apply for the information online.
Dep Ó Cuív said this is “problematic” for people who do not have access to a computer at home and “isn’t workable “in areas which have poor broadband and which cannot maintain a secure internet connection.
The Cornamona based TD has called on the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Regina Doherty, to put measures in place to ensure that people who wish access to their PRSI information can do so, even if they are not online.
“This issue is affecting a large number of people who are starting the process of preparing to retire,” he said, “and who need this information to make informed decisions about their futures.”