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Legal market overview

Ireland has remained, post bailout, the fastest-growing economy in the eurozone. Recent reports indicate the increased liquidity of domestic buyers; over half of M&A transactions within the past year have involved Irish acquirers. There is still considerable foreign direct investment in the market, with investment funds continuing to be attracted by the country’s business-oriented tax system. Technology and software giants continue to set up offices in Dublin, and others are expanding their current operations. As a result of this and increasing confidence in the economy, the construction market has begun to grow again, with developments including Google’s new €150m data centre. In line with these trends, law firms have seen an increase in transactional work, and loan sales remain an area of particular activity, particularly those backed by real estate assets.

The widely anticipated Court of Appeal Act came into force in October 2014; this established a general Court of Appeal which sits between the High Court and the Supreme Court, and is designed to increase efficiency and improve waiting times.

Domestic firms dominate the legal market, with the past year seeing increased team sizes. Declan Black is now managing partner at Mason Hayes & Curran, while Michael Jackson was appointed managing partner of Matheson in October 2015. Multinational firms have also established themselves in the market, with many increasing their profile.

Firms in the spotlight

Flynn O'Driscoll

Flynn O’Driscoll is a business law firm focused on achieving practical business solutions for its clients. It was founded by Pat Flynn in 2002 who was joined shortly thereafter by Alan O’Driscoll. Since its formation, its main areas of practice have been corporate and commercial advice, corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions and aviation and assets finance.

O'Connor Solicitors

O’Connor Solicitors is an established commercial and regulatory law firm which has provided advice to commercial entities and statutory bodies, together with religious, educational and healthcare charities, since 1994.

Interview with...

Law firm managing partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

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