Proof of Address
by Pawel Zosik
One of the most commonly requested supporting documents by public institutions and offices in Ireland is Proof of Address. You need it, for instance, when applying for a PPS number or opening a bank account. There seems to be some confusion regarding what is and what isn’t a valid proof of address. This article aims at answering some of the common questions regarding proof of address in Ireland.
Where do you live?
In some countries you are required by law to register your address. Irish government does not maintain any central database of addresses. Instead various institutions rely on acceptable forms of proof of address.
Most widely accepted forms of proof of address in Ireland
Not all proofs of address were created equal. Some forms of proof of address are more widely accepted in Ireland. The list below provides types of proof of address which offer the highest chance of being accepted by Irish institutions.
The proof of address you submit should be less than 3 months old. Documents whose issue date is more than 3 months may not be accepted.
Traditional household utility bills such as electricity, gas, water, landline phone (but not mobile phone) are accepted virtually in every context.
Similarly, Irish Bank statements are widely accepted. However, in order to open your first bank account in Ireland you will need proof of address from one of the other categories.
Tax Credit Certificate
Tax Credit Certificate is issued by the Revenue Office and outlines tax credits associated with your employment.
Last in the list of common types of proof of address is a Tenancy Agreement that is provided to you by your landlord upon signing a lease agreement.
Proof of address when you’re new in Ireland
In a most typical scenario, your journey in Ireland starts with some form of shared accommodation. Although very common these days, home sharing remains very poorly regulated. As a result it is quite rare to sign a formal tenancy agreement when home sharing.
Similarly with utility bills, in a shared accommodation scenario, the main tenant’s name will most likely be on the bills and she may be reluctant to transfer the ownership of the bills to a new tenant.
How about a bank statement or a tax credit certificate? Opening a bank account itself requires a proof of address and getting a tax credit certificate required getting a job first.
It is clear that providing the most typical forms of proof of address may be difficult for Newcomers. Let’s explore some alternative options.
Alternative ways to prove your address
Here are some alternative options you can try in order to prove your address in a situation where you cannot provide a more widely accepted document. Please note that these may or may not be sufficient in your particular case.
Letter from landlord
As an alternative to a Tenancy Agreement in a home sharing scenario, the landlord can provide you with a letter confirming you are residing at a given address. This letter should contain your name, the address of the property, the date you moved in, the length of the lease and contact details of the landlord.
Letter from an existing tenant + supporting document
If for any reason it is not possible to obtain a letter from the landlord, a letter from one of the tenants should be sufficient, as long as he or she can provide one of the accepted proofs of address in support of the letter. As in the case of a letter from landlord, the letter should contain your name, the address of the property, the date you moved in, the length of the lease and contact details of the tenant. This is a useful workaround in a shared accommodation situation.
Letters from financial institutions
A bank statement falls under the broader category of accepted proofs for address, that is, letters from recognised Irish financial institutions. If you come to Ireland on a student visa, and you purchased a private health insurance from an Irish insurance provider, you may be able to use the insurance confirmation letter as proof of address.
What is not accepted as proof of address
PPS confirmation letter
PPS confirmation letter is not a valid proof of address.
Utility service contracts
When you sign up for a household utility such as electricity or gas you will receive several letters confirming your connection to the media and service contract. Unfortunately these letters are not accepted as valid proof of address.
Other utility bills
Cable TV, Internet and mobile phone bills are usually not accepted as proof of address.
- Be mindful of the requirement to prove your address.
- When entering shared accommodation enquire about available proof of address options.
- Try to obtain a suitable proof of address as soon as possible.