The concept of a source-related dose constraint was first introduced in ICPR publication 60. The idea was to provide a number that individual exposures from a single, specific source should not exceed, and below which optimisation of protection should take place. Dose constraints were applied to occupational and public exposures from practices. In order to simplify and clarify the ICRP’s recommendations, the latest draft, RP05, presents dose constraints again, and with the same meaning as in publication 60. However, the dose constraints are now applied in all situations, not just practices. This new approach does provide simplification, in that a single concept is applied to all types of exposures (normal situations, accident situations, and existing situations). However, the approach and numerical values that are selected by regulatory authorities for the application of the concept, particularly in normal situations which are also subject to dose limits, will be crucial to the implementation of the system of radiological protection.