State of the nations

At the start of 2016, this very short post seeks to draw out and compare the critical civil legal issues currently under debate in the jurisdictions in which we and our customers operate. At a high level, the aims and themes appear noticeably similar: to ensure access to justice and to reform and modernise the procedures and costs associated with making claims.

One noticeable point of contrast is that whereas a good deal of activity and reform in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland is either judicially-led or follows a report by a senior judge, the changes under discussion in the Irish Republic are much more clearly in the form of political initiatives. Continue reading

Current Irish legal reforms

31 July marked the end of the legal term in Ireland. It was also the deadline for responding to a Parliamentary consultation about draft legislation to set up a regime of periodical payment orders in catastrophic injury cases. Earlier in the month, another important reform of Irish law was announced: the re-casting of consumer insurance law. Both are summarised in this post.

Mr Justice Quirke – a former High Court judge and, some time before that, international scrum half – was a key instigator of both measures.  Although the projects borrow from legislation implemented in the UK, the recommendations made are quite distinct and the differences should not be overlooked.

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Periodical payments legislation

Queen Elizabeth II was not the only prominent woman announcing significant legislation on Wednesday 27th May. That same day, Irish Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald TD published a Draft Bill that seeks to introduce a regime of periodical payments for catastrophic injury claims in Ireland.

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