Public sector in Ireland

A&L Goodbody LLP

A&L Goodbody LLP's 'highly expert' team advises on a wide range of matters in the public sector, with significant expertise in public procurement, major infrastructure and utility projects, and environmental law. Its broad client base includes a number of local authorities, government departments, national utilities companies, universities and hospitals. Anna-Marie Curran, who specialises in public procurement and state aid, and Kevin Feeney, who focuses on construction projects, lead the team. Cliona Christle, consultant Alison Fanagan and Ross Moore bring expertise in healthcare, environmental and energy matters, respectively, while Moore also heads the firm's pro bono practice.

Practice head(s):

Anna-Marie Curran; Kevin Feeney

Other key lawyers:

Cliona Christle; Alison Fanagan; Ross Moore; Duncan Inverarity; Conor Owens

Testimonials

‘Highly expert team. Easily accessible and provide clear, robust advice across a wide range of areas. Efficient and extremely effective. Very reliable.’

‘Extremely reliable, sound advice. Very personable and approachable. I would highly recommend the team at A&L Goodbody, especially Duncan Inverarity and Cliona Christle – outstanding solicitors and absolute experts in their fields.’

‘Alison Fanagan leads a very capable team. Its key strengths are its commercially minded approach, responsiveness and efficient delivery of legal advice – they are the team to go for quick, clear guidance on legal problems. They are particularly strong in the water sector space, and have good knowledge of developments in environmental law.’

‘Alison Fanagan is absolutely standout. What differentiates her from competitors is the clear, commercially focused nature of her advice – she provides firm guidance on what she thinks is the optimum solution, rather than just providing wishy-washy advices that give no practical guidance.’

‘Cliona Christle is always receptive, knowledgeable, calm and solution focused.’

‘They have an awareness of the public sector operating environment and their advice is tailored to this, with an eye on the non-legal constraints that public bodies are subject to (ie the Code of Practice for Governance of State Bodies).’

Key clients

Department of Finance

Department of Public Expenditure and Reform

Department of Defence

National Assets Management Agency (NAMA)

National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA)

St. Vincent’s Hospital

Mater Hospital

Housing Agency

TG4

Adelaide & Meath Hospital (incorporating the National Children’s Hospital)

The Heritage Council

Belfast Harbour Commissioners

Office of Public Works

Ervia (formerly Bord Gais Eireann)

Irish Water

Irish Rail

Electricity Supply Board

Bord na Móna

University College Dublin

University College Cork

National University of Ireland

Special liquidators to the IBRC

Marine Institute

Irish Airlines Pensions Limited

State Claims Agency

Irish Aviation Authority

St. James Hospital

Coombe Hospital

CIE

National University of Ireland Maynooth

The Pensions Authority

Irish Central Statistics Office

Technological University Dublin

Bus Eireann

Transport Infrastructure Ireland

Local authorities including Cavan County Council, Cork County Council, Cork City Council, Galway County Council, Kerry County Council, Kildare County Council, Leitrim County Council, Limerick City and County Council, Louth County Council, Mayo County Council, Monaghan County Council, Roscommon County Council, Sligo County Council and Wicklow County Council

Smart Dublin

AIB

Bank of Ireland

permanent tsb

Work highlights

  • Advising Irish Water on the upgrade of the Ringsend wastewater treatment plant.
  • Advising BAM Building Limited on its contract for the construction of the National Children’s Hospital.
  • Acting for the State Claims Agency in the defence of high-value clinical negligence claims for a number of public hospitals and the HSE.

Arthur Cox

Advising on the establishment and operation of state-sponsored bodies is a key area of expertise for Arthur Cox, with Maura McLaughlin handling significant recent mandates involving the creation of agencies for the provision of financial aid in the pandemic and financing for social housing projects. The team also represents clients in judicial reviews and statutory inquiries, where practice head Joanelle O’Cleirigh, who has particular strength in healthcare and childcare law, is highly active. Aaron Boyle has procurement expertise, Alex McLean focuses on energy matters, and senior associate Kate O’Donohoe is experienced in professional misconduct inquiries.

Practice head(s):

Joanelle O’Cleirigh

Other key lawyers:

Aaron Boyle; Alex McLean; Danielle Conaghan; Maura McLaughlin; Kate O’Donohoe; Rob Corbet; Gavin Woods; Olivia Mulrooney

Testimonials

‘Aaron Boyle provides on-point, practical procurement advice.’

‘A well-developed understanding of the regulatory context within which a government department works.’

‘Alex McLean and Danielle Conaghan consistently excel in terms of the clarity, quality, depth and provision of their advice and also their ongoing engagement to ensure that the client is achieving the optimum result.’

‘The team understand the public sector environment very well, which is essential for advising public bodies.’

‘Rob Corbet and Gavin Woods are excellent partners who have provided excellent advice and service to our organisation over many years. They are down to earth and very easy to work with. Olivia Mulrooney also provides excellent advice and is only too happy to assist at short notice when required.’

Key clients

Minister for Finance

Minister for Housing, Planning & Local Government

National Treasury Management Agency

EirGrid

ESB

Coillte

daa Plc

Bord na Móna

Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland

Land Development Agency

Child & Family Agency (Tusla)

Irish Blood Transfusion Service

Cork County Council

Bord Iascaigh Mhara

Central Bank of Ireland

Ervia

Office of Public Works

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland

Mental Health Commission

Dental Council

Home Building Finance Ireland

Trinity College Dublin

Irish Rail

An Post

Work highlights

  • Advising the Pandemic Stabilisation and Recovery Fund, a new €2bn fund to support medium and large enterprises in Ireland affected by Covid-19, on the structuring and documentation of its investments.
  • Advising St Vincents DAC in relation to providing health and social care services to service users.
  • Appointed by the state to assist it in the establishment of the Land Development Agency, which was created to manage the state’s land to develop new homes.

ByrneWallace LLP

The 'competent, capable and extremely well-informed' team at ByrneWallace LLP has extensive experience in representing public sector clients in litigation, judicial review proceedings and statutory inquiries, as well as advising on employment issues and public procurement. Its broad client base includes government departments, local authorities, universities and healthcare bodies. Employment specialist Michelle Ní Longáin, who has particular expertise in equality law, leads the team. Litigator Jon Legorburu, Sinéad Kearney, who specialises in childcare and adoption law, and Sean O’Donnell, who focuses on regulatory investigations and enforcement, are also key contacts.

Practice head(s):

Michelle Ní Longáin

Other key lawyers:

Jon Legorburu; Sinéad Kearney; Olive Doyle; Sean O’Donnell; Mark O’Shaughnessy; Martin Cooney; Fergal Ruane; Valerie Hourigan

Testimonials

‘It is an excellent practice in devising innovative solutions for clients.’

‘Sinéad Kearney is very client focused and effective.’

‘The staff at ByrneWallace are competent, capable and extremely well informed. I have not only used them for their expert legal knowledge, but also as a sounding board for concepts or ideas we may be proposing. The scope of knowledge that each member of the ByrneWallace team brings to every meeting is unrivalled.’

‘Their accessibility is second to none. They always deliver on our expectations and the work is always carried out in a pleasant, polite and efficient manner. I rate the individuals I work with extremely highly and trust them with the reputation of our organisation, which is of utmost importance to us.’

‘Readily available for consultation, provide sound advice using their experts in the particular field so the strength and depth of the various teams is impressive.’

‘Sean O’Donnell is a safe pair of hands. Valerie Hourigan is very thorough.’

‘The team has exceptional abilities in relation to public procurement. They also are extremely affable which makes them a perfect match. I work with two individuals who are exceptional at their work, Martin Cooney and Fergal Ruane. They work late into the night to get documents ready to meet our deadlines also.’

‘Sean O’Donnell is approachable and responsive.’

Key clients

Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland

Córas Iompair Éireann

Courts Service of Ireland

Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications

Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government

Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport

Dublin City Council

Environmental Protection Agency

Ervia

European Parliament

Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman

IDA

Irish Auditing and Accounting Supervisory Authority (IAASA)

Irish Prison Service

Kildare County Council

Local Government Management Agency

Longford County Council

Mental Health Commission

NUI Galway

Rotunda Hospital

RTÉ

Teagasc

Trinity College Dublin

TU Dublin (Technological University Dublin, formerly DIT)

University College Dublin

University of Limerick

Waterways Ireland

Westmeath County Council

Work highlights

  • Advising the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications on various matters, including national guidance in respect of disclosures to government ministers.
  • Advising IDA Ireland on procurement procedures for a number of office developments to attract foreign direct investment.
  • Acting for the Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland in High Court proceedings issued against the Minister for Education, Ireland and the Attorney General in relation to the unequal treatment by the government of ASTI members and members of the nurses’ union, INMO, as a result of industrial action.

Mason Hayes & Curran LLP

Public law litigation is a significant area of expertise for the 'reliable, practical and solution-driven' team at Mason Hayes & Curran LLP, which is highly experienced in judicial review, statutory appeals and contentious public procurement. The team is also active in advising public bodies on their statutory powers, data protection investigations, and professional regulation and disciplinary law. Practice head Edward Gleeson has extensive experience in public inquiries, while Niall Michel focuses on financial and professional services regulation. Catherine Allen has expertise in judicial review and fitness to practise inquiries; Lisa Joyce is noted for her strength in information law; and senior associate Laura Rattigan specialises in judicial review.

Practice head(s):

Edward Gleeson

Other key lawyers:

Catherine Allen; Niall Michel; Lisa Joyce; Laura Rattigan; Kate Hogan

Testimonials

‘Because of the reliable, practical and solution-driven legal advice consistently provided, Mason Hayes & Curran are always our first point of call when requiring legal advice on complex matters. Their attention to detail, thoroughness, dedication to the task at hand, and extensive knowledge of the law in the area of communication regulation is of a very high standard and greatly valued. The legal advice is communicated with clarity and certainty, and is efficiently delivered. MHC also manage the client relationship very effectively and keep you up to date on all developments in the case. These key capabilities set MHC apart from their competitors.’

‘Lisa Joyce is a standout legal adviser with expert insight into communications regulation matters and with the ability to understand the client’s strategic objectives while providing succinct legal certainty in her advice, and then distilling these complex legal matters into easily understandable information for the client. Lisa not only acts on the client’s instructions but actively looks to add further value by ensuring that the client has thought through all potential related issues prior to final advice. These competencies are highly valued and they set Lisa apart from her peers.’

‘A number of experts in Freedom of Information/Access to Information about the Environment are available. They have in-depth knowledge of the legislation, the ability to provide specific training, give very fast responses to queries, as I work to very strict deadlines, and strong legal advice. A one-stop shop for all my needs.’

‘Very professional approach. Always respond very quickly to our queries and keep us informed on progress throughout the process. Strong communication skills. Lisa Joyce and Catherine Allen are standouts.

‘MHC have the expertise and are practical in their dealings. They show versatility and flexibility with their clients.’

‘ I have found the solicitors and partners in Mason Hayes and Curran that I deal with very collaborative, with a great breadth and depth of knowledge and experience in public sector practice. They always take the time to understand the client’s needs while at the same time providing the required advice and assistance to the deadlines necessary.’

‘In addition to her encyclopaedic knowledge of public sector law, Catherine Allen provides advice that is strategic and cognisant of the practicalities of public sector work. Catherine is the consummate professional. She is a pleasure to deal with.’

‘Edward Gleeson’s advice is carefully provided and nothing is left to chance. Edward is incredibly detailed and has a very wide range of experience. We feel very confident to act on his advice. Edward is a most competent and professional lawyer.’

Key clients

Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland

Arthropharm (Europe) Limited

David Tynan, Assessor appointed by the Minister for Finance

Health Insurance Authority

Health and Safety Authority

Environmental Protection Agency

Eirgrid

Commission for Communications Regulation

Commission for the Regulation of Utilities

Commission for Aviation Regulation

Regulator of the National Lottery

Inland Fisheries Ireland

Sea Fisheries Protection Authority

Child and Family Agency

Housing Agency Ireland

Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal

Department of Communications Climate Action and Environment

National Museum of Ireland

Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

St Patrick’s Mental Health Services

Electricity Supply Board

Medical Council

Veterinary Council of Ireland

Ulster Bank Ireland DAC

Work highlights

  • Advised the assessor appointed to value the transferred shares and extinguished rights in Anglo Irish Bank on the statutory remit and successfully defended landmark judicial review proceedings brought against him by Mr Patrick McKillen.
  • Successfully defended the Commission for Aviation Regulation in judicial review proceedings brought by Ryanair challenging the client’s interpretation of a statutory provision, relating to whether strikes by Ryanair’s pilots amounted to “extraordinary circumstances”.
  • Successfully represented the Health Insurance Authority in a judicial review and a statutory appeal brought by Chubb European Group plc, challenging the client’s decision regarding the sale of health insurance to non-EEA students.

Matheson

'Experienced across all areas of public sector law', Matheson has wide-ranging expertise in public procurement, environmental and planning law, and judicial review, statutory appeals and disciplinary procedures. Clients include government departments, local councils, and state and semi-state bodies. Michael Byrne focuses on public law litigation, with notable strength in adoption law, and is supported by senior associate Aoiffe Moran, an expert in freedom of information law. Nicola Dunleavy is highly experienced in environmental law, judicial review and regulatory disputes; Garret Farrelly specialises in energy and infrastructure projects; and competition expert Helen Kelly advises on procurement and state aid matters.

Practice head(s):

Michael Byrne; Nicola Dunleavy; Garret Farrelly; Helen Kelly

Other key lawyers:

Kate McKenna; Maria Kennedy; Aoiffe Moran

Testimonials

‘Matheson are experienced across all areas of public sector law. They have the resources to address all public sector legal queries. In particular, they hold the ability to see past the immediate query to understand the risks and consequences of certain decisions. This allows Matheson to provide not just black and white legal advice but propose wider practical courses of action.’

‘Kate McKenna supports an exceptional knowledge of European and state aid law. Kate has a pragmatic view that extends beyond the legislation into a deep understanding of the practicalities of delivering public sector policy.’

Key clients

The Adoption Authority of Ireland

Institute of Chartered Accountants Ireland

Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment

Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c.

Laois County Council

Enterprise Ireland

Drogheda Port Company

Work highlights

  • Acting for the Adoption Authority of Ireland in a leapfrog appeal to the Supreme Court concerning pre-existing rights to adoption, and assisted the same client with developing the necessary procedures to conduct remote regulatory hearings during the Covid-19 crisis.
  • Defending the Institute of Chartered Accountants Ireland in judicial review proceedings initiated by Lidl Ireland GmbH following a decision of the client’s independent review committee in relation to a complaint concerning a pricing comparison survey.
  • Advised the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment on the fundamental design and implementation of the new renewable electricity support scheme (RESS), including advising the client on its state aid application.

McCann FitzGerald

The 'exceptional' team at McCann FitzGerald has significant expertise in advising major public bodies on their statutory powers and functions, regulatory issues, public procurement, planning and environmental matters, and public investigations. The team also has notable experience in the construction of major public transport and infrastructure projects, which is a particular area of strength for Eamonn O’Hanrahan and Michelle Doyle. Practice head Seán Barton has a strong track record in public law investigations and enforcement actions, with a focus on the justice, education and charity sectors. Rosaleen Byrne also handles regulatory disputes, particularly in the financial services and telecoms sectors.

Practice head(s):

Seán Barton

Other key lawyers:

Eamonn O’Hanrahan; Michelle Doyle; Rosaleen Byrne; Brendan Slattery; Kevin Kelly; Ciara Ryan

Testimonials

‘Rosaleen Byrne is excellent.’

‘My experience is that the firm is very professional and responsive.’

‘Seán Barton is very personable, extremely dedicated and has a high level of expertise.’

‘Experts in guiding large public sector companies through the minefield of regulation.’

‘They are on the same level as me. They treat in-house counsel as an integral part of the team. I would call out Michelle Doyle for special mention – she is truly outstanding.’

‘The firm has exceptional capabilities and experience in the area of public sector practice, providing an excellent service for clients and seeking to ensure that they obtain the optimal outcomes in all cases.’

‘Eamonn O’Hanrahan gave us top-class service and was dedicated and professional at all times, with a depth of insight and knowledge in relation to the public sector and administrative law that is unrivalled.’

Key clients

Bord na Móna plc

Central Bank of Ireland

Charities Regulator

CIE/Irish Rail

Coillte Teoranta (the Forestry Board)

Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg)

Courts Service

Dublin Airport Authority

Electricity Supply Board

Ervia

Government departments including the Department of Finance and the Department of Justice and Equality

Institute of Bankers

Institute of Directors

Insolvency Service of Ireland

Irish Takeover Panel

Local authorities including Galway County Council, Kildare County Council, Laois County Council, Dublin City Council and others

Maynooth University

National Accreditation Board

National Asset Management Agency

National Development Finance Agency

National Transport Authority

National Treasury Management Agency

Office of Public Works

Road Safety Authority

Sea Fisheries Protection Authority

Shannon Airport Authority

State Claims Agency

Transport Infrastructure Ireland

United States Department of Justice

University College Dublin

Work highlights

  • Acting as standing counsel to the Courts Service of Ireland, in particular advising on the establishment and modernisation of rules of procedure for the conduct of civil and criminal proceedings in all of the Irish courts.
  • Acting as standing counsel to the Road Safety Authority.
  • Advising the US government in proceedings in the Irish and EU courts brought by the Irish Data Protection Commissioner against Facebook, involving important issues around data privacy and transfers.

William Fry

William Fry is particularly experienced in the financing and procurement of major public sector infrastructure projects, as well as advising on state aid, regulatory enforcement and public investigations. The team acts for government departments, local authorities and a number of financial bodies operating in the public sector. The practice is led by Claire Waterson, who specialises in competition, state aid and telecoms regulatory matters. Other key contacts include public sector employment expert Alicia Compton; Garrett Breen, who is experienced in regulatory litigation; and projects and construction head Jarleth Heneghan, who specialises in IT infrastructure.

Practice head(s):

Claire Waterson

Other key lawyers:

Alicia Compton; Garrett Breen; Jarleth Heneghan; Cassandra Byrne; Laura Murdock

Testimonials

‘The William Fry team work very well together. It is clearly evident that they have a good working relationship, and that they know who in their team to call upon for an expert opinion. This is reassuring for us as clients that our lawyers know their own limitations, but that they can call on the expertise of the wider team to provide us as clients with the best advice.’

‘Jarleth Heneghan and Cassandra Byrne are always available, engaged and diligent in the preparation of their advice.’

Key clients

European Investment Bank

Department of Finance

Central Bank of Ireland

ComReg

National Asset Management Agency (NAMA)

National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA)

Revenue Commissioners

State Claims Agency

Irish Stock Exchange

National Dairy Council

SOLAS

UCD

Horse Racing Ireland

DCU

DIT

ESB

Bord Gáis

Eirgrid

The Special Liquidators of Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (formerly Anglo Irish Bank)

Bord Iascaigh Mhara

Dublin City Council

Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council

South Dublin County Council

Laois County Council

Offaly Council

Westmeath County Council

Louth County Council

The Pensions Authority

The Arts Council

Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment

Enterprise Ireland

Work highlights

  • Advising the Department of Communications, Climate Action & Environment on all legal aspects of the National Broadband Plan, including contractual matters, telecoms regulation, competition law and state aid.
  • Advising the Department of Finance on the state aid, EU law, taxation and contractual aspects of the recovery of approximately €15bn of alleged state aid from Apple.
  • Advising SOLAS on proposed primary legislation to establish a licensing system for construction-related activities.

Beauchamps LLP

Noted for its 'in-depth knowledge', Beauchamps counts a wide range of public and semi-state bodies and professional regulators among its clients, advising on administrative law and judicial review challenges, public procurement, data protection, and corporate and finance matters. The team has also been active in advising public housing bodies on significant social housing projects. Stephen McLoughlin, who is particularly experienced in professional regulatory issues, leads the team with firm chair Imelda Reynolds, who advises a range of public bodies on governance issues. Dorit McCann also brings expertise in procurement law.

Practice head(s):

Stephen McLoughlin; Imelda Reynolds

Other key lawyers:

Dorit McCann; Máire Cunningham; Maitiú Ó Dónaill; Mark Perry-Knox-Gore; Edward Lyons

Testimonials

‘Beauchamps continue to provide an excellent understanding of our requirements, excellent service and immediate response times.’

‘Maitiú Ó Dónaill provides an excellent property law service, has a full understanding of our company’s specific requirements and excellent management of legal actions when they arise. Imelda Reynolds’ accessibility and response times are first rate.’

‘Ed Lyons is a pleasure to deal with – responsive with a good sense of humour and an excellent communicator.

‘The team understand the needs of in-house counsel and always seek to ensure you feel supported when the pressure is on.’

‘Imelda Reynolds, Máire Cunningham and Dorit McCann are all very responsive and engaged. They have an understanding of our business, which isn’t often the case with competitors, and know how to respond to meet our expectations, in a practical, commercially minded manner.’

‘They combine an in-depth knowledge of the law with an understanding of the constraints within which a public body operates and a pragmatic, client-friendly approach.’

‘Imelda Reynolds is approachable, knowledgeable and client-focused.’

‘Stephen McLoughlin has exceptional insight into our requirements and produces exceptionally high-quality advice.’

Key clients

National Council for Special Education

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland

Health Information and Quality Authority

Tusla, Child and Family Agency

IDA Ireland

Dublin Port Company

Enterprise Ireland

Respond

Cluid

ComReg

Central Statistics Office

South Dublin City Council

Pobal

Work highlights

  • Successfully represented the Health Information and Quality Authority and the Chief Inspector of Social Services in judicial review proceedings brought in the High Court by the registered operator of a nursing home, seeking to quash a decision to cancel the registration of the nursing home.
  • Successfully advised Enterprise Ireland on the state aid implications of a €200m scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak.
  • Successfully represented Dublin Port Company in claims arising from its continued development and expansion under the Dublin Port masterplan.

DAC Beachcroft Dublin

The 'very professional and accessible' team at DAC Beachcroft Dublin stands out for its advice to regulatory authorities across a range of areas, including financial and professional services, healthcare, sports and media, on their statutory functions, fitness to practise inquiries and disciplinary processes. The practice is led by Gary Rice, who is highly experienced in professional regulation, with particular expertise in the healthcare sector. Consultant Aideen Ryan and legal director Aidan Healy, who has a notable track record in professional disciplinary matters in the sports sector, are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Gary Rice

Other key lawyers:

Aideen Ryan; Aidan Healy; Brian Ormond

Testimonials

‘Very professional and accessible. Advice is always well considered.’

‘My dealings have been primarily with Brian Ormond, who has always been courteous, professional and well informed.’

‘Astute in regulatory matters and very obliging. I know I receive the appropriate advice.’

‘The team is genuine, caring and reaches out to see if everything is good every now and again.’

‘The firm are very easy to work with and quick to respond.’

‘The individuals we work with have gone beyond the call of duty on many occasions to assist us, including out of hours, which is important for us given the nature of our business.’

‘The regulatory team at DAC Beachcroft offer strong support and guidance in their advice. Timely and practical advice available without delay with a genuine interest in ensuring the right outcome for regulators.’

‘Aideen Ryan and Gary Rice are exceptionally supportive individuals while offering practical expertise in their advice.’

Key clients

Medical Council

Law Society of Ireland – Independent Adjudicator of the Law Society

Veterinary Council of Ireland

Competition and Consumer Protection Commission

Sport Ireland

Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (formerly the Turf Club)

Allied Irish Bank

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

State Claims Agency

RTÉ

Broadcasting Authority of Ireland

Irish Pharmacy Union

Irish Dental Union

Federation of Ophthalmic and Dispensing Opticians

Curragh Racecourse Limited

Fórsa (formerly Impact)

Horse Sport Ireland

Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI)

Work highlights

  • Acting for the Medical Council of Ireland in prosecuting complaints referred to its fitness to practise committee and in a number of emergency suspension applications.
  • Providing ongoing advice to Sports Ireland on sports regulation and anti-doping cases.
  • Providing ongoing advice to the Veterinary Council of Ireland, including on professional disciplinary matters.

Eversheds Sutherland

The 'excellent' team at Eversheds Sutherland is particularly noted for its strength in public procurement and public sector infrastructure and social housing projects. The team also has experience in contentious matters in the public sector, including investigations, statutory appeals and judicial review proceedings, and is highly active in the fields of education and healthcare. Peter Curran, who specialises in public procurement law, leads the team jointly with Pamela O’Neill, who handles a range of contentious public sector work. Aisling Gannon brings expertise in healthcare matters and Margaret Gorman in education law.

Practice head(s):

Pamela O’Neill; Peter Curran

Other key lawyers:

Margaret Gorman; Eoin MacAodha; Aisling Gannon

Testimonials

‘In-depth knowledge of the Irish health service.’

‘Consultation and advice is excellent. They provide workable, practical solutions.’

Key clients

Residential Tenancies Board

EirGrid

National Development Finance Agency

National Asset Management Agency

Pensions Ombudsman

Financial Services Ombudsman

Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg)

Dublin Port

Irish Water

Gas Networks Ireland

Health Service Executive

Personal Injuries Assessment Board

Trinity College Dublin

RTE

National Paediatric Hospital Development Board

CIE (Irish Rail)

Various Education and Training Boards

Insolvency Service of Ireland

National Standards Authority of Ireland

Department of Housing, Community and Local Government

Education Research Council

Department of Communications

Solus

National Treasury Management Agency

Tax Appeals Commission

Dublin Airport Authority

Derry & Strabane District Council

Coillte (Irish Forestry Service)

Work highlights

  • Acting as sole legal adviser to Residential Tenancies Board on regulatory matters, enforcement, legislative amendments, general litigation, corporate governance, statutory appeal and judicial review proceedings, public procurement and real estate matters.
  • Acting as lead legal adviser to EirGrid on its joint procurement with its French counterpart, Réseau de Transport d’électricité, of a 600km electricity interconnector between Ireland and France (with a total value of €1bn).
  • Acting as lead legal adviser to the National Development Finance Agency on various major PPP projects in the education and social Housing sectors.

Fieldfisher

Fieldfisher's 'incredibly strong' team is highly experienced in advising regulatory and public sector bodies on their statutory functions and disciplinary procedures, with expertise spanning health and social care, education, charities, and financial and professional services. Fitness to practise inquiries, regulatory investigations, and statutory appeals and judicial review proceedings are particular areas of strength. Among the key contacts in the sizeable team are JP McDowell, a 'leading specialist in professional regulation'; Eimear Burke, who has significant experience in advising on investigations; Sinéad Taaffe; the 'innovative and practical' Barry Fagan; and Zoe Richardson.

Practice head(s):

JP McDowell; Eimear Burke; Sinéad Taaffe; Barry Fagan; Zoe Richardson

Testimonials

‘They stand out for the size and knowledge of the regulatory team and their response times to queries and requests for advice. Barry Fagan is innovative and practical in his approach.’

‘JP McDowell is the leading specialist lawyer in Ireland in the area of professional regulation. The quality of service is superb and the fees charged represent excellent value for money.’

‘The practice has an incredibly strong team with specialist regulatory knowledge yet they still maintain excellent consumer engagement.’

‘JP McDowell has an expert view on the legal services horizon. He is a trusted adviser and has an unfaltering keen analytical approach to problems.’

‘Fieldfisher have a very longstanding regulatory team, with in-depth background knowledge of the sector. This knowledge provides strong reassurance to a client, who can rely on a wealth of experience and a proactive response to legal issues.’

‘The team generally is strong, communicative and approachable. Sinéad Taaffe is a very hardworking partner who is consistently responsive to the needs of the client.’

‘Eimear Burke has a lot of experience in the area of regulatory law. She has good depth of knowledge and is always well prepared.’

‘Client relations and turnaround time are key for us as a client. We have had a lot of dealings with Barry Fagan and we find he is professional, excellent technically and his manner lends itself towards our committee meetings, which can be contentious at times. Barry has a way of setting out the cold hard facts for a committee but not frightening them about decisions they must make.’

Key clients

Teaching Council

Property Services Regulatory Authority

Medical Council

Central Bank of Ireland

Office of the Planning Regulator

Teaching Regulation Agency (UK)

CORU

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (“NMBI”)

Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland

Work highlights

  • Instructed on behalf of the Mental Health (Criminal Law) Review Board, which was a notice party in an appeal to the Supreme Court.
  • Advised the CEO of the Medical Council in respect of an inquiry before the council’s fitness to practise committee, and the subsequent application to the High Court to confirm sanction, regarding a fraudulent medical practitioner.
  • Advised and represented the director of the Teaching Council in respect of an inquiry into the fitness to teach of a registered teacher.

Hayes Solicitors LLP

Public law litigation is a key area of expertise for Hayes Solicitors LLP' 'utterly client-centred and responsive' team, which acts for public bodies in a range of medical negligence, product liability and public liability claims, investigations and judicial review proceedings. The team is also noted for its experience in professional regulatory and disciplinary matters, representing regulatory bodies and practitioners in fitness to practise inquiries. The practice is led by experienced litigator Joe O’Malley, Mary Hough, who brings extensive expertise in healthcare matters, and Jackie Buckley, who regularly advises state agencies on property transactions.

Practice head(s):

Joe O’Malley; Mary Hough; Jackie Buckley; Breda O’Malley

Other key lawyers:

Caroline Crowley; Louise O’Rourke; Matthew Austin; Jeremy Erwin

Testimonials

‘This practice is large and competitive, yet when dealing with the firm you feel that it is intimate, bespoke and individualised. This is how it differs from other large competitive Dublin firms that I have engaged with. I have experienced it as utterly client centred and responsive. Also, my experience is that when you engage a partner, you get a partner – the work is not passed on to far more junior people once engaged.’

‘I would like to mention a standout partner: Joe O’Malley. His knowledge of his area of expertise is second to none. Joe listens to issues with intent, and allows clients and colleagues to participate fully and to feel they have been heard. Joe is exceptionally skilled in drawing together diverse views and difficult issues and charting a cogent way forward that is informed by the client’s needs and the law. Joe is an excellent draftsman who can make complex issues accessible to clients. While reasonable and mild mannered, he does not shy from being firm and forthright where circumstances require.’

‘Very comprehensive in the analysis of information and legal advice with a strong attention to detail.’

‘Extremely knowledgeable and client focused.’

‘Jackie Buckley is exceptional. She is extremely knowledgeable, through and efficient.’

Key clients

State Claims Agency

Royal Institute of Architects in Ireland (RIAI)

Work highlights

  • Representing NAMA in the defence of a public law challenge to NAMA’s powers and a counterclaim for judgment for approximately €30m.
  • Representing the Department of Health, the HSE and GlaxoSmithKline in relation to approximately 90 existing sets of legal proceedings brought by plaintiffs who developed narcolepsy and cataplexy following the administration of the H1N1 swine flu vaccine.
  • Acted for NAMA in defence of a claim for breach of confidence arising from the unlawful dissemination of confidential information relating to the loans and secured assets of a high-profile developer.

Holmes O'Malley Sexton

With a 'good knowledge of public sector activities', Holmes O'Malley Sexton is particularly experienced in acting for public sector clients in judicial review proceedings, as well as regularly advising on public procurement matters. The team's wide-ranging client base includes educational institutions, regulatory bodies, local authorities, and other state and semi-state bodies. Harry Fehily and Pat McInerney are the key contacts in the Limerick office.

Practice head(s):

Harry Fehily; Pat McInerney; Donal Creaton

Testimonials

‘Good knowledge of public sector activities. Designated partner as a one-stop shop for all our needs.’

‘Pat McInerney has a willingness to see the issue from our perspective rather than as a purely legal matter.’

‘The practice provide sound legal advice at the earliest stage, which helps formulate the approach to issues that arise and decide whether to negotiate a resolution at an early stage and avoid costly litigation or proceed to prosecute/defend any action.’

‘In matters that relate to the public sector area I have dealt exclusively with Pat McInerney. I have great confidence in respect of the legal advice I receive in relation to the application of administrative law and decision making. I am confident that I will receive independent, objective advice that will enable my organisation to take the correct decision in relation to issues that arise.’

Key clients

University of Limerick

Private Security Authority

Irish Greyhound Board

Revenue Commissioners

Galway Mayo Institute of Technology

Legal Aid Board

Coillte

Limerick 2030 DAC

Tax Appeal Commission

Commission for Railway Regulation

National Gallery of Ireland

Sligo Institute of Technology

Work highlights

  • Acted for the Irish Greyhound Board in the successful defence of judicial review proceedings brought by an applicant in the High Court, challenging the issuance of an exclusion order by the client.
  • Acting for the Legal Aid Board as notice party to judicial review proceedings brought by two applicants against An Bord Pleanála and the Attorney General, challenging the decision to grant planning permission for the development of 536 housing units in County Dublin.
  • Advised Limerick Twenty Thirty Strategic Development DAC on the procurement process for the management of the Opera Site project in Limerick.

Ronan Daly Jermyn

Ronan Daly Jermyn is experienced in advising public sector clients on a wide range of matters, including public procurement, data protection, healthcare and employment claims, state aid, and corporate matters. The team has particular strength in acting for local authorities and universities. The practice is led by procurement specialist Finola McCarthy, corporate-focused Gillian Keating in Cork and healthcare expert Padraic Brennan in Galway.

Practice head(s):

Finola McCarthy; Gillian Keating; Padraic Brennan

Other key lawyers:

Imelda Tierney; Diarmaid Gavin; Peter McGarvey; David McCarroll

Testimonials

‘Gillian Keating is a genuine pleasure to work with, well informed and responsive in a crisis.’

‘Good industry knowledge. Tailored practical advice. Great turnaround times. Good value for money.’

‘David McCarroll provides tailored unique and skilled employment law advice. Padraic Brennan is an excellent and very experienced problem solver in litigation.’

Key clients

Cork City Council

Cork County Council

Kerry County Council

Westmeath County Council

Donegal County Council

Waterford County Council

Dublin Airport Authority (daa)

State Claims Agency

Teagasc – Agricultural and Food Development Authority

Irish Cattle Breeding Federation

Knowledge Transfer Ireland

National Cancer Registry Ireland

Charities Regulatory Authority

Work highlights

  • Advised Cork City Council on a €40m affordable purchase housing scheme in Boherboy, Co Cork.
  • Advised Cork County Council on the remediation of an area of reclaimed foreshore at the former steelworks site at Haulbowline Island.
  • Advised the Citizens Information Board on the complete restructuring of services provided by MABS/CIS Networks.