PRSA contributor information

Friday, June 29, 2007: There was a 37% increase in the number of people opening Personal Retirement Savings Accounts (PRSAs) between the end of 2005 and the end of 2006, according to new data on PRSA take-up released for the first time today by the Pensions Board.

Brendan Kennedy, CEO of The Pensions Board, welcomed the data which gives a breakdown by age, gender, type of PRSA, average individual contribution and economic status of PRSA contributors.

The summary data since the start of PRSAs in 2003, indicates that 67% of contributors are aged between 25 and 44. 42% of contributors are married and 58% single. 75% of contributors are employed, 24% are self-employed and 1% are not employed.

The Pensions Board found that 76% of contributors have a Standard PRSA while 24% have a Non-Standard. Broken down across gender, 38% of Standard PRSA contributors are female while 62% are male. With Non-Standard PRSAs, 33% are females while 67% are male and overall, 37% are female compared to 63% male indicating that there is still a notable gender imbalance in pension take-up.

The data shows that the total number of PRSA contributors equates to 11.1% of registered occupational pension scheme (OPS) members. 35% of contributors made contributions through payroll while 22,784 contributors have an employer contribution to their PRSA.

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Media Queries:

Mary Hutch
Head of Information and Training
The Pensions Board
Tel: (01) 6131900

Jackie Gallagher
Q4 Public Relations
Tel: (01) 4751444/087-2371838

Notes to Editors:

About PRSAs
A PRSA is a contract between an individual and an authorised PRSA provider in the form of an investment account that can be used to save for retirement. It is a personal pension plan where the contributions paid are tax deductible and the investment return is tax exempted. There are two types of PRSA – a Standard PRSA and a non-Standard PRSA.

About Mandatory Access – 15 September
All employers were required on 15 September 2003 to enter into a contract with a PRSA provider so that access to at least one Standard PRSA is available for all “excluded employees” on and from that date.

Excluded employees are:

  • employees of an employer who does not offer an occupational pension scheme, or
  • employees included in an occupational pension scheme for death in service benefits only, or
  • employees included in an occupational pension scheme that does not permit the payment of additional voluntary contributions, or
  • employees who are ineligible to join the occupational pension scheme and who will not, under the rules, become eligible to join the scheme for pension benefits within 6 months from the date they commenced employment.

About The Pensions Board
The Pensions Board is the statutory body set up to regulate occupational pension schemes and PRSAs and to advise the Minister for Social and Family Affairs, and through him, the Government, on overall pension policy development.

Public Information
The Information unit at The Pensions Board provides a wide range of pension information booklets free of charge and can be reached at the LoCall number 1890-65-65-65 and on

First Quarter 2007, PRSA Data
PRSA data released on 4 May 2007 show that 103,027 PRSAs have been taken out by end March 2007. Read more under Related Articles below.