Ms Joanelle O'Cleirigh > Arthur Cox > Dublin, Ireland > Lawyer Profile

Arthur Cox
D02 T380

Work Department

Litigation, Dispute Resolution and Investigations


Joanelle works for a broad range of clients, particularly those in the healthcare, life sciences, and regulated sectors. Joanelle also advises clients in relation to inquiries and investigations.

Joanelle’s Corporate Crime experience includes advising in relation to the conduct of investigations and inquiries; some of Ireland’s most significant Tribunals of Inquiry, Commissions of Investigation; and on some of the most complex and sensitive statutory and corporate investigations.

Her healthcare/life sciences expertise includes advising on:

  • contractual issues;
  • disputes/closure of services;
  • HIQA regulations;
  • HPRA and Compliance;
  • investigations/reviews/look-backs and product recalls;
  • medical negligence
  • cross border healthcare;
  • constitutional law;
  • privacy and data issues;
  • capacity and consent;
  • wardship;
  • maternity services
  • child protection.


Admitted as a solicitor, 2000. Admitted as a solicitor in Northern Ireland, 2015


The Law Society of Ireland; Founding member and Chapter Leader of the Irish Chapter of the Women White Collar Defense Association


Post Graduate Diploma in Law, 1995, Dublin Institute of Technology; BA, 1994, Trinity College, Dublin

Lawyer Rankings

Ireland > Public sector

(Leading individuals)

Joanelle O’CleirighArthur Cox

Arthur Cox’s broad public sector practice covers the full range of matters in this space, both contentious and non-contentious. The team particularly stands out for its advice on the establishment of state-sponsored bodies, with Maura McLaughlin leading on this work; her recent activity in this space has included advising on the establishment of organisations in response to the pandemic, as well as providing ongoing advice to these bodies. The practice also assists a number of regulatory bodies with their operations, including representing these clients in judicial review proceedings. Practice head Joanelle O’Cleirigh specialises in contentious matters, such as investigations and judicial reviews; elsewhere, Alex McLean and Aaron Boyle advise on the procurement of infrastructure projects, with McLean focused on the energy sector. Senior associate Kate O’Donohoe advises regulators on corporate governance as well as disciplinary proceedings.

Ireland > Healthcare and life sciences

(Leading individuals)

Joanelle O’CleirighArthur Cox

Arthur Cox has a fully-rounded healthcare and life sciences practice, noted for its history in corporate transactions and its well-established regulatory team. The firm has been active in relation to access to private hospitals by Covid-19 patients during the pandemic, regulatory investigations in the life sciences sector, and has seen additional growth in IP litigation. The firm frequently works alongside global law firm leaders in the healthcare and life sciences segments, advising some of the biggest names in the industry. In particular, it advises a range of US-based pharmaceutical and biotech businesses on regulatory matters in Ireland. It is also at the forefront of healthcare sector regulation, particularly for private hospitals. Colin Kavanagh leads the team on corporate and regulatory matters in the life sciences sector, and Joanelle O’Cleirigh is a leader in dispute resolution and investigations in healthcare.

Ireland > White-collar crime

Arthur Cox is experienced in advising clients facing investigations by regulators, and also assists companies with carrying out internal investigations and ensuring compliance with regulations. The team is also noted for its strength in litigation involving allegations of fraud, as well as handling the first case relating to an alleged ‘raider attack’ to come before the Irish courts. Joanelle O’Cleirigh and Richard Willis jointly lead the practice; O’Cleirigh has deep expertise in investigations and inquires, while Willis has broad experience in complex disputes and investigations.

Ireland > Dispute resolution

Arthur Cox has an outstanding record in big-ticket cases before the Commercial Court. It is experienced in banking and financial services cases, real estate disputes, contentious tax matters and white-collar/corporate crime. The firm is also at the forefront of financial regulatory investigations. The group has successfully brought through a new generation of partners and associates in the last two years to maintain its high standing in the market. Financial services disputes specialist Eve Mulconry leads the team, which includes senior name Andrew Lenny who continues to be rated for financial regulatory investigations. Joanelle O’Cleirigh leads the healthcare and life sciences disputes group. Keith Smith is a leading name in real estate disputes.

Ireland > Insurance

Arthur Cox continues to have a thriving insurance practice, maintaining a strong presence in both contentious and non-contentious matters. It has sustained a buoyant presence in insurance M&A, business combinations and outsourcing arrangements. On the contentious side, the firm remains at the forefront of professional indemnity, liability defence claims and regulatory investigations. Corporate and M&A partner Elizabeth Bothwell has extensive experience in insurance M&A and other financial services transactions. Joanelle O’Cleirigh is a key figure in contentious matters, including inquiries and regulatory hearings. Michael Twomey is also noted for risk management, litigation and regulatory investigations. Former head of insurance and reinsurance Jennifer McCarthy has left the firm.