In this case, the Supreme Court held that:

firstly, a public body cannot be liable in negligence for exercising a statutory duty, where the legislation does not create a duty of care towards the claimant;

secondly, it cannot be liable in negligence based upon the policy it pursued in applying legislation, unless the claimant has brought successful judicial review proceedings impugning that policy; and,

thirdly, the High Court should not award damages to a company for a wrong perpetrated against a related company because both companies have shared directors.


Cromane Seafoods Ltd and O’Sullivan McCarthy Mussel Developments Ltd are companies with a common shareholding. ….read more

In this determination (McDonagh v Sunday World) the Supreme Court granted McDonagh leave to appeal the decision of the Court of Appeal, which overturned a High Court (judge and jury) award of €900,000 for defamation.

The Court determined that McDonagh had raised five issues as being issues of general public importance, or that it is in the interest of justice that they should be determined by the Supreme Court:

(a) whether it is open to the Court of Appeal to reverse a jury verdict that a statement was defamatory of the plaintiff arrived at even in the face of strong evidence to ….read more

(Pictured: Mr Justice Gerard Hogan. Photo: Collins)

In this determination (Minister for Justice v O’Connor) the Court granted O’Connor leave to appeal a Court of Appeal decision that it does not breach the constitutional guarantee to equal treatment before the law (Article 40.1) that the State provides legal aid on a statutory basis for a defendant fighting surrender to the International Criminal Court, whereas legal aid for a European Arrest Warrant case is provided under an administrative scheme.

The Court will also allow argument on whether it is necessary to make a preliminary reference to European Court of Justice on whether EU ….read more

In this determination (Leopardstown Club v Templeville Developments) the Supreme Court granted Leopardstown leave to appeal a decision of the Court of Appeal, where it is alleged that the COA overturned the High Court trial judge’s findings of fact.

The Supreme Court determined that it is an issue of genuine public interest that an appeal be allowed where it is alleged that the COA misapplied the rule from Hay v O’Grady regarding the role of an appellate court.

The rule from Hay v. O’Grady [1992] 1 I.R. 210 was stated by by McCarthy J at 217:

1. An appellate court does not enjoy ….read more

Dismissing this appeal (here) in an action under s 160 of the Planning and Development Act 2000, Dunne J stated that “notwithstanding the fact that a pre-commencement condition requiring agreement between the developer and the planning authority on a particular issue has not been concluded but where there is subsequent agreement, a court will not generally grant relief pursuant to s 160 of the Act”.

In October 2004, An Bord Pleanala granted Shell planning permission for the construction of a gas terminal in County Mayo, subject to, among other things, Shell providing Mayo County Council with security for the reinstatement of ….read more

Here, the Supreme Court allowed Blanchfield’s appeal, as:

28. The approach adopted in the High Court of awarding the sum of €75,000 to the Respondent against the Appellant for services rendered on a quantum meruit basis was incorrect in that:

(a) neither a claim for such relief nor the matters which would have established an entitlement to it had been pleaded; and

(b) there was insufficient evidence before the High Court to arrive at a proper valuation of the quantum meruit, even assuming entitlement to payment on a quantum meruit basis could be established.


The parties were to be partners in a joint venture ….read more

In this determination (here) the Supreme Court granted an order permitting the State to appeal the Court of Appeal’s decision in Chinguara & Others v Minister for Justice and Equality.

The issue is whether the courts should grant an injunction preventing the deportation of a non-national where the High Court has found that the appellant is not eligible for subsidiary protection and that the deportation order is valid, pending an appeal of that decision to the Court of Appeal.


After an unsuccessful application for refugee status in 2008, Chinguara (and his wife and their two children) submitted an application for subsidiary ….read more

On Tuesday, 2nd February, a seven judge panel will hear argument in the DPP’s appeal against the Court of Appeal’s decision in DPP v Maher (here).

The DPP is appealing against the Court of Appeal’s legal reasoning that led it to conclude that two years imprisonment was the maximum sentence permissible for the offence of indecent assault against a male between the years 1981 and 1991. At the time, a term of up to ten years was permitted for the offence of indecent assault against a female.

Legal History

The Offences against the Person Act 1861 (s 61) provided for imprisonment not exceeding ….read more

(Pictured: Ms Martha McEnery. Photo: Collins)

In this determination (here) the Supreme Court granted an order allowing the Garda Commissioner to appeal the Court of Appeal’s decision in McEnery v Commissioner of An Garda Síochána (here).

The issue is “clarification of the circumstances in which the power of summary dismissal of a garda convicted of a criminal offence, by a jury or by a judge summarily, can be utilised in disciplinary proceedings”.


In 2011, Waterford Circuit Court convicted McEnery of assault contrary to s 2 of the Criminal Law Act 1997. The trial judge sentenced her to four months imprisonment, suspended for six ….read more

In this case, the Court held that a single incident of misconduct would not cause the parties to the dispute to justifiably lose confidence in the Arbitrator.



Plazaway provided hotel management services to Fayleigh under a ten year contract. Plazaway also provided “shared services” which it provided to other hoels under its management. Under a term of the contract, Fayleigh could terminate the contract subject to a payment to Plazaway of one year’s management fee. At some point in 2008 Plazaway stopped providing management services but continued to supply the shared services. There is a dispute between the parties as to ….read more

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