Firm Profile > Fieldfisher > Dublin, Ireland


Planning and environment Tier 2

Led by JP McDowell and Zoe Richardson, Fieldfisher is known for its work for state and semi-state clients. The team frequently acts for An Bord Pleanála in judicial review proceedings involving planning decisions, as well as handling enforcement for the Environmental Protection Agency. In addition to contentious work, the team also advises on the implications of statutory changes.

Practice head(s):

JP McDowell; Zoe Richardson


‘The Fieldfisher team provides an excellent depth of knowledge and advice in this particular specialised area of law. ’

‘The individuals we work with are always available and respond as appropriate, often at short notice. The individuals we work with are knowledgeable and provide an excellent service.’

Key clients

An Bord Pleanála

Environmental Protection Agency

Office of Planning Regulator

Inland Fisheries Ireland

Public sector Tier 2

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


‘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)


Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (“NMBI”)

Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland

Data privacy and data protection Tier 3

Fieldfisher stands out for its work advising clients on responding to investigations by the Data Protection Commission into alleged data breaches and non-compliance with data protection regulations. This work includes assisting clients with notifications to the DPC as well as handling responses to inquiries. The team, led by Julie Austin, also assists with operational compliance with Irish data protection law.

Practice head(s):

Julie Austin


‘The combination of substantive privacy experience along with local connections and understanding of local procedural law is a huge advantage.’

‘Julie Austin has excellent understanding of how the Irish Data Protection Commission operates which is a huge asset. Her expertise in Irish procedural law is key to developing a comprehensive strategy.’

Key clients

Kennedy Wilson


Law Society of Ireland



Employment Tier 3

Led by Barry Walsh, Fieldfisher's team acts for clients in the public and private sectors on employment matters. Its work covers corporate and commercial employment work, disciplinary matters and redundancies. Julie Austin is another name to note in the team, which has been active throughout the Covid-19 pandemic; recent work included producing seminars to update clients on developments in Irish employment law.

Practice head(s):

Barry Walsh

Other key lawyers:

Julie Austin

Key clients


St. Patrick’s Mental Health Services


Irish Aviation Authority

Bank of Ireland



Energy and natural resources Tier 3

Fieldfisher's energy practice specialises in renewable energy projects, particularly wind power. The team's work in this area includes advice on the financing of wind projects and assisting joint ventures with developing projects and transactions involving these assets. The team also advised on a floating wind farm, the first of its kind in the Irish market. The practice is led by Feilim O’Caoimh; Elaine Traynor is another key contact.

Practice head(s):

Feilim O’Caoimh

Other key lawyers:

Elaine Traynor


‘We value their consistency. I have worked with the Fieldfisher team for the last five years and the majority of the team hasn’t changed. This really makes a difference as you build trust up over time and when I have a new project to deal with I know I can trust the team. ’

‘Fieldfisher represented us on a large portfolio sale of assets. The service provided was second to none. They worked 20-hour days, seven days a week to close out the sale. Feilim, Elaine, Teodora and Daniel made themselves available during bank holidays weekends and all other weekends required. We have another large transaction soon and I won’t be going with any other legal firm.’

‘The team are extremely professional and knowledgeable.’

‘Feilim O’Caoimh and Elaine Traynor are extremely well informed about the detailed steps that our project needed to go through and the issues that needed to be addressed.’

Key clients

Galetech Energy Developments Limited

Tullynamoyle Wind Farm II Limited

Gweedore Wind Farm Limited

Allied Irish Bank Plc

WED Castle Limited

Hamburg Commercial Bank AG

Close Leasing Limited

North West Wind Limited

Simply Blue Energy Wind Limited

Insolvency and corporate restructuring Tier 3

Fieldfisher acts for receivers, examiners, official assignees and liquidators in contentious and non-contentious insolvency and restructuring matters. The firm also advises stakeholders such as banks, creditors and debtors. Mark Woodcock heads the practice.

Practice head(s):

Mark Woodcock

Other key lawyers:

Joanne Cooney


‘The insolvency team are extremely thorough, knowledgeable and well-prepared for advisory and litigation work alike.’

‘Mark Woodcock takes an active role in cases and has a keen eye for good strategy. He has considerable experience in all areas of insolvency law in Ireland, including receiverships, examinerships and liquidations.’

‘They have a strong team with solid experience in personal insolvency as well as corporate insolvency leading to deep technical skills applicable across the range of litigation and advice carried.’

‘Mark Woodcock and his team have retained me as counsel for many years. Mark is a leading lawyer in Dublin insolvency circles, and his team benefit from his long-standing expertise in this area. He is very client focused, and doesn’t shy from a fight. Joanne Cooney is a rising star on the team who has established herself well, particularly in the area of bankruptcy.’

‘Partner-led, prompt and experienced advisors.’

‘Mark Woodcock leads out the team. He is experienced, knowledgeable, a calming influence, and takes a personal interest in assignments.’

‘A strong restructuring team with good experience and market profile.’

‘Mark Woodcock is a very experienced insolvency solicitor who is adept at managing contentious cases.’

Key clients

The Bank of Ireland

The Insolvency Service of Ireland (ISI)

Baker Tilly

KBC Bank plc


The National Asset Management Agency (NAMA)


Friel Stafford,

Dublin Food Services Limited

Somers, Murphy and Earl

Insurance Tier 3

The experienced Killian O’Reilly leads Fieldfisher's insurance practice, which covers a broad range of contentious matters, including professional negligence, public liability, employers' liability and motor insurance claims. The team acts for domestic, London market and international insurers, as well as self-insured entities. Senior associate Mark Kelly is particularly experienced in personal injury claims.

Practice head(s):

Killian O’Reilly

Other key lawyers:

Mark Kelly

Key clients

Ecclesiastical Insurance

XS Direct Insurance

AIG Insurance

FBD Insurance

Ryanair DAC

Real estate Tier 3

Fieldfisher is known for its track record in advising on social housing matters, acting for local authority funds, government agencies and approved housing bodies in this area. The team also advises retailers and investors on real estate transactions. Breen Purcell leads the team, with Paddy Smyth also a key contact.

Practice head(s):

Breen Purcell

Other key lawyers:

Paddy Smyth

Banking and finance Tier 4

Fieldfisher has notable expertise in real estate finance and the financing of renewable energy projects, particularly wind farms. The team, which works with the firm's other offices in cross-border transactions, also advises on loan portfolio sales and acquisitions. Breen Purcell, energy sector specialist Feilim O’Caoimh and development finance-focused Paddy Smyth co-head the practice.

Practice head(s):

Breen Purcell; Paddy Smyth; Feilim O’Caoimh


‘Paddy Smyth’s practical approach to finding solutions to legal problems, coupled with his technical expertise, is invaluable.’

Key clients

Galetech Group

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 4

Fieldfisher's team advises clients on M&A, private equity investments, corporate governance and restructurings, as well as commercial matters including contracts and outsourcing agreements. The team has particular expertise in the renewable energy and public sectors. Practice head Feilim O’Caoimh also acts for well-known domestic clients in the FMCG, IT and media spaces.

Practice head(s):

Feilim O’Caoimh

Other key lawyers:

Elaine Traynor; Conor Folan

Key clients

Galetech Energy Developments Limited


Simply Blue Energy

Sazerac Inc.

Hibernia Services t/a Evros

Tullynamoyle Wind

Ohshima Ireland Limited

Expert Hardware Limited

Team Accessories

Dispute resolution Tier 4

Led by Killian O’Reilly and Mark Woodcock, Fieldfisher acts in dispute resolution matters involving procurement, landlord and tenant disputes, insurance, and financial services. Woodcock specialises in representing financial institutions in litigation, while O'Reilly has a broad practice and is also experienced in mediation.

Practice head(s):

Killian O’Reilly; Mark Woodcock


‘Highly commercially focused. They provide clarity and don’t get caught up in futile legal concepts which add no commercial value to litigation. They are excellent at understanding the real world effects of the law on the insurance sector. ’

‘Killian O’Reilly is commercially focused and clear. Mark Kelly is a strong and consistent communicator ’

‘Very strong experience. Strong process with strategic input.’

Key clients

Ryanair DAC

EU Networks

Iceland Foods


AIG Insurance plc

RSM Ireland

Bank of Ireland


TUI Group

Patrona Underwriting Limited

Department Name Email Telephone
Banking and finance Breen Purcell
Corporate and commercial Feilim O'Caoimh
Data protection and freedom of information Julie Austin
Dispute resolution and litigation Killian O'Reilly
Employment Barry Walsh
Insolvency and restructuring Mark Woodcock
Private client Breen Purcell
Public and regulatory JP McDowell
Public and regulatory Eimear Burke
Public and regulatory Barry Fagan
Public and regulatory Sinead Taaffe
Real estate Breen Purcell
Renewable energy Feilim O'Caoimh
Employment Julie Austin
Planning & Environmental Zoe Richardson
Energy and Natural Resources Elaine Traynor
Number of lawyers : 54