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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Ireland > Public sector > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Public sector
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

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Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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The team at A&L Goodbody¬†advises on state aid, restructuring and sale of state assets, and data protection, and is particularly strong on public procurement matters. Anna-Marie Curran¬†is acting for Limerick City and County Council on the tender process for the N/M20 Cork to Limerick road improvement scheme;¬†Kevin Feeney¬†is advising a developer on a¬†‚ā¨40m housing development scheme in Dublin as part of a PPP project; and Eamonn Conlon¬†is assisting BAM Building with the construction contract for the New Children's Hospital. Mark Rasdale¬†is also a key contact.

Arthur Cox specialises in regulatory law, with extensive experience advising regulatory bodies on statutory investigations. The team is particularly active in the healthcare sector; Gavin Woods is representing the Mental Health Commission in a number of ongoing judicial review proceedings, and Joanelle O’Cleirigh is advising the Irish Blood Transfusion Service on issues arising from defects in a device used before blood donations. Aaron Boyle is also assisting the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board with procurement matters concerning the building of a new children's hospital. Danielle Conaghan and Alex McLean handle environmental and energy-related matters.

The 'approachable' and 'highly responsive' team at Mason Hayes & Curran advises public bodies on their statutory duties, handles judicial review proceedings, disciplinary procedures and contentious public procurement matters, and advises on data protection and freedom of information law. Catherine Allen is representing the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland in relation to fitness to practise matters; the 'meticulous and practical' Lisa Joyce acted for the Central Bank of Ireland in proceedings relating to a statutory administrative sanctions inquiry; and Niall Michel acted for TransCore in a challenge to a decision of the Irish National Roads Authority. Edward Gleeson heads the practice.

McCann FitzGerald advises public sector clients across a range of areas, including justice, infrastructure, transport, energy, health and education. Sean Barton is advising the Courts Service on various matters including GDPR compliance and an ongoing project to consolidate and reform criminal procedure in the District Court. Eamonn O’Hanrahan and Jenny Mellerick are assisting Transport Infrastructure Ireland with the outsourcing of the operation of free-flow tolling on the M50, among other issues. Michelle Doyle, who advises on the regulatory framework for major infrastructure projects, and regulated markets specialist Rosaleen Byrne are also noted.

William Fry  has 'unrivalled experience dealing with the public sector', according to one client, and is active in the financial services, employment, telecoms, infrastructure and healthcare sectors. Claire Waterson, Shane Kelleher and Eavan Saunders advised a government department on a high-profile state aid case; Waterson and 'most trusted adviser' Alicia Compton are assisting a state agency with apprenticeship procedures; and Jarleth Heneghan advised the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board on the development of a new children's hospital.

Byrne Wallace stands out for the 'flexibility of the team and the depth and range of its knowledge': it advises public bodies in a range of sectors, including social care, agriculture, education, tourism and local government, with particular strengths in healthcare and employment. Group head Michelle Ní Longáin is advising the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform on the implementation of new HR policies. Sinead Kearney specialises in health and social care matters; Jon Legorburu and Séan O’Donnell handle litigation; Martin Cooney, who joined from Smyth & Son, advises on construction issues; and Joanne Finn advises on EU and competition law.

Gary Rice heads the 'enthusiastic, thorough and approachable team' at DAC Beachcroft Dublin, which is commended for its 'palpable passion for the work it does'. Recent highlights include advising a state agency for sport on anti-doping investigations and prosecutions; acting for the Medical Council in relation to fitness to practise inquiries; and representing a regulatory body in a dispute with a laboratory services provider. Senior associates Aidan Healy and Brian Ormond and associate Niall Sexton are key members of the team. Consultant Aideen Ryan, who joined from McDowell Purcell, is 'thorough and pragmatic in her approach' and has 'a wealth of expertise in regulatory law'. Dublin office head Lisa Broderick is 'exceptionally practical', provides 'excellent, well-thought out advice' and 'will get the job done always'.

Eversheds Sutherland's practice is noted for its advice in the healthcare, infrastructure projects, education and financial services sectors; the 'partners' procurement knowledge and expertise in this area' is also a key strength. Peter Curran and Angelyn Rowan are advising the Grangegorman Development Agency on the procurement of major contracts for the development of student accommodation on the Dublin Institute of Technology campus, and Pamela O’Neill is assisting the Residential Tenancies Board with a new procedure for issuing its determination orders. Norman Fitzgerald heads the team.

Matheson's practice counts a number of public bodies among its clients, and advises on state aid, public inquiries and statutory investigations, freedom of information law, energy and infrastructure projects, and environmental and planning issues, among other matters. Michael Byrne¬†is acting for the Adoption Authority of Ireland in a rare "leap-frog" appeal to the Supreme Court in a case concerning the recognition of foreign adoptions; Helen Kelly¬†is advising a state-owned organisation on the state aid aspects of its receipt of a¬†‚ā¨30m government loan; and Garret Farrelly¬†is advising EirGrid and Soni on the new wholesale electricity market arrangement for Ireland and Northern Ireland. Nicola Dunleavy¬†is also noted.

Beauchamps advises clients including the Charities Regulator, the National Disability Authority and the Health Information Quality Authority on public and regulatory law at national, EU and international level. EU, competition and procurement specialist Dorit McCann and Mark Pery-Knox-Gore, who counts a number of charities and not-for-profit organisations among his clients, are the key contacts.

McDowell Purcell is 'unique in the level of experience it has in the area of professional regulation'; the team's expertise covers the health and social care, education, charities and professional services sectors. Managing partner and department head JP McDowell acted for the Law Society of Ireland in a case involving a claims harvesting website; Eimear Burke represented a regulatory body in a high-profile fitness to practise inquiry; and the 'calm and measured' Barry Fagan acted for the Teaching Council in relation to the first-ever fitness to teach inquiry. Sinéad Taaffe is noted for her 'commercially focused and clear advice'. The team has recently expanded its client base to include the Charities Regulator.

Philip Lee represents public sector bodies including local authorities, state agencies and some government departments, covering the healthcare, finance, IT, transport, waste and energy sectors. Alice Whittaker, Anne Bateman, Patrick Walshe and Rachel Minch make up the team.

Hayes Solicitors' public sector practice is particularly strong in relation to healthcare matters; Joe O’Malley is acting for the State Claims Agency (SCA) in a series of proceedings brought by thalidomide survivors, and Mary Hough, Caroline Crowley and Louise O’Rourke are also noted for their expertise in the defence of medical negligence claims. O'Malley is also representing the SCA in a group of linked public liability cases relating to allegations of historic child sexual abuse. Jackie Buckley advises a number of state agencies on their property requirements.

Holmes O'Malley Sexton advises a number of education institutions, including the Galway Mayo Institute of Technology, as well as other public sector bodies such as the Private Security Authority and the Irish Greyhound Board. Limerick and Dublin-based managing partner Harry Fehily and senior associate Pat McInerney are acting for the Legal Aid Board, a new client, as notice party to two judicial review proceedings brought against An Bord Pleanála and the Attorney General regarding a decision to grant planning permission for the development of housing units in County Dublin.

Ronan Daly Jermyn specialises in advising on statutory obligations, public procurement, data protection, complex medical negligence claims and data protection. In Cork, Finola McCarthy assists with public procurement and administrative law issues, and Diarmaid Gavin advises on EU competition and state aid matters. In Galway, Padraic Brennan and Imelda Tierney focus on the defence of medical negligence actions. Clients include Cork County Council and the State Claims Agency.

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Legal Developments in Ireland for Public sector

  • Equality before the Law

    Employment Equality legislation in Ireland is to be found in the Employment Equality Act 1998 as amended by the Equality Act 2004. This legislation is extremely detailed but in effect makes it unlawful for employers to discriminate against a person on the basis of gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, and membership of the traveller community. These are referred to as the ‚Äúdiscriminatory grounds‚ÄĚ.
    - Dillon Eustace

Legal Developments in Ireland

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • LANDWELL Bulletin: Managing in a Downturn

    As we are all well aware this is the most turbulent climate for business both nationally and internationally, that any of us have experienced. We have therefore focused this bulletin on areas where we believe we can help you take decisive steps to manage the issues that are required to get through the downturn and be properly prepared for the future.
  • The Companies (Amendment) Act 2009

    The Companies (Amendment) Act, 2009 (the ‚ÄúAct‚ÄĚ) was signed into law on 12 July 2009. The Act provides for signifi cant changes to company law compliance and enforcement. It gives increased powers of search and seizure to the Offi ce of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (‚ÄúODCE‚ÄĚ) and expands disclosure obligations with regard to transactions between a company and its directors (including specifi c changes for licensed banks). The Act also relaxes the requirement that at least one director of an Irish company must be resident in the State.
  • New Rules for Acquiring Transactions in the Financial Sector

    In line with EU-mandated requirements, Ireland has introduced new rules governing acquisitions, in whole or in part, of certain regulated financial institutions.
  • Irish Merger Control: Review of Key Developments in 2008

    A 47% Year-on-Year Drop in the Number of Deals Notified: Reflecting the global decline in merger activity, the number of deals notified to the Competition Authority fell to 38 in 2008, a 47% decrease from 2007, when 72 deals were notified, and a more than 60% decrease from the 2006 peak of 98 notified deals.
  • European Communities (Takeover Bids (Directive 2004/25/EC)) Regulations 2006

    The EU Takeovers Directive (2004/25/EC) (the ‚ÄúTakeovers Directive‚ÄĚ) has been transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Takeover Bids (Directive 2004/25/EC)) Regulations, 2006 (S. I. No. 255 of 2006) (the ‚ÄúTakeovers Regulations‚ÄĚ). The stated aim of the Takeovers Directive is to strengthen the Single Market in financial services by facilitating cross-border restructuring and enhancing minority shareholder protection. Many of the provisions of the Directive are already contained in the existing Irish regime for the supervision of takeovers set out in the Irish Takeover Panel Act, 1997 (the ‚ÄúAct‚ÄĚ), the Takeover Rules, 2001 (the ‚ÄúRules‚ÄĚ) and the Companies Acts 1963 ‚Äď 2005, which will continue to apply. The Takeovers Regulations cater for those areas not already dealt with in the existing regime or areas of the regime that needed to be adjusted as a result of the requirements of the Takeovers Directive.
  • Establishing a Retail Fund in Ireland for sale in Japan Fund Structures and Features

    The issuing of securities of offshore funds for public sale into Japan is governed by a combination of the Securities and Exchange Law of Japan (the "SEL") which is enforced by the Japanese Ministry of Finance ("MOF"), the Law Concerning Investment Trust and Investment Company of Japan (the "Investment Funds Law") which is enforced by the Financial Services Agency of Japan ("FSA").Establishing a Retail Fund in Ireland for sale in Japan Fund Structures and Features
  • Equality before the Law

    Employment Equality legislation in Ireland is to be found in the Employment Equality Act 1998 as amended by the Equality Act 2004. This legislation is extremely detailed but in effect makes it unlawful for employers to discriminate against a person on the basis of gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, and membership of the traveller community. These are referred to as the ‚Äúdiscriminatory grounds‚ÄĚ.
  • Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Ireland

    The enforcement of judgments between the EU member states is regulated by the Brussels I Regulation (44/2001, OJL 12/1, 16 January 2001) (‚Äúthe Regulation‚ÄĚ). On the 22nd December 2000, the European Council agreed the Regulation to replace the Brussels Convention on Jurisdiction and Enforcement of Judgments 1968 (‚Äúthe Brussels Convention‚ÄĚ). The purpose of the Regulation was to bring the law contained in the Brussels Convention into the main body of EC Law. The Regulation was implemented in Ireland by Statutory Instrument 52 of 2002, European Communities (Civil and Commercial Judgments) Regulations 2002, which came into force on the 1st March 2002.
  • E-Discovery

    Unlike the United States, which is leading the way in relation to e-discovery and where the disclosure of electronic data has become standard procedure, as of yet there is no standard protocol or practice direction issued in relation to e-discovery in Ireland. Despite this fact, Irish lawyers are beginning to appreciate the invaluable nature of electronic data which can be retrieved and used in commercial litigation.
  • Disclosure Requirements with respect to Company Particulars

    Directive 2003/58/EC amending Directive 68/151/EEC (the ‚ÄúFirst Disclosure Directive‚ÄĚ) became effective on 1st April, 2007 having been transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Companies) (Amendment) Regulations 2007 (S.I. No. 49 of 2007) (the ‚ÄúRegulations‚ÄĚ).

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