Becoming a consultant solicitor is a very different way of working when compared to a traditional role. Many consultants flourish and very often double (or even triple) their earnings, as well as enjoying the benefits of a better work-life balance. However, some consultants can struggle, particularly if they are used to their firms feeding their clients to them.
Is becoming a consultant solicitor right for me?
You should ask yourself whether you have a decent following of clients or are confident in your ability to obtain new ones, as this will be the main hurdle you face.
An employed solicitor earns on average only 30%-40% of their annual billing. As a consultant, you can expect to earn a much higher percentage of the work you do.
Litigation is a topic frequently covered in the media, but what is litigation. From the mica scandal where homeowners claim defective blocks are causing their homes to crumble, to the case of school teacher Enoch Burke who refused to address a transitioning student by their preferred name and pronoun, most people in Ireland would have heard about a dispute between two or more parties that has ended up in court.
What is Litigation?
In simple terms, litigation is a legal process used to resolve disputes. It usually involves taking legal action in court, but can also include alternative dispute resolution methods, such as mediation or arbitration. Court action is usually taken when all other methods of negotiation have been exhausted.
Litigation can be a complex and daunting prospect and can be highly emotional. It can also be a complex and time-consuming process and may not always be the best option for resolving a dispute. However, in some cases, it may be the only way to seek justice and protect your rights.
Litigation can be used to resolve a wide variety of disputes, including personal injury claims, breach of contract disputes, boundary disagreements, family law matters, professional negligence claims and defamation. Following are some examples of the types of disputes that can be resolved through litigation.
In Ireland, a judicial review is a process where a court reviews whether a decision or action taken by a public body or official is in alignment with the law. For example, if a person or group believe a planning decision made by a local authority to be unlawful or unfair, they could bring a legal challenge through a judicial review. In this case, litigation would be used to challenge the decision and request a review of the local authority’s decision-making process. If the court finds the decision-making process was not carried out in accordance with the law, they can order the local authority in this case to take reverse their decision or make appropriate, lawful changes to their course of action. This process helps to ensure that public authorities and officials act within the law and treat people fairly.
The dispute over the development of a bio gas plant in south County Galway provides a practical example of when a person or group might seek a judicial review. In January 2023, media reports covered the Gort Bio Gas Concern Group’s announcement of plans to seek a judicial review of An Bord Pleanála’s decision to approve a bio gas plant in the town, overturning two previous rejections from the Galway County Council. The Gort Bio Gas Concern Group believes the plant will have a negative impact on livelihoods, the local economy, tourism, the environment and people’s health and hopes a judicial review of An Bord Pleanála’s decision-making process will find in their favour, overturning the decision to grant planning permission and ultimately preventing the development of the plant in their town.
Another example where litigation is used to settle disputes is when family members or beneficiaries of an estate do not agree with the terms of a will. There are a number of reasons why a will might be contested, including the validity of a will and whether a spouse or child has been properly provided for in accordance with the law. This is known as contentious probate.
Undue Influence is another key reason people opt to challenge a will. Undue Influence describes a situation where someone manipulates or pressures a testator (the person making a will) into making decisions about their will that benefit the person influencing them. An example of Undue Influence is of an adult child that places pressure on their elderly parent to change their will and leave a larger share of the estate to them, to the detriment of their siblings and other family members. This is particularly relevant where the elderly parent is vulnerable or reliant on their adult child to some extent, and may feel unable to resist the pressure placed on them by their adult child.
If you are concerned about the terms of a loved one’s will and believe they may have been subject to Undue Influence when making their will, please get in touch with a member of our wills and probate team who can provide you with advice about your situation and what to do next.
Litigation is also an option when disputes arise over the performance of a product. Typically, a product is considered defective if it does not comply with the relevant safety standards or regulations that apply to the product in the country where it was sold.
Under Irish law, a person who is injured or has their property damaged as a result of a defective product may be able to make a claim for compensation. To be successful in their claim, they must prove the product was defective and is what caused their injury or damage to their property.
There have been several cases brought against the manufacturers and suppliers of defective concrete blocks in Ireland. Known as the “mica scandal” in media reports, homeowners claim the concrete blocks contained excessive levels of pyrite which caused significant structural damage. In this case, litigation has been used to seek compensation for the damage claimed to be caused by the blocks. Some cases have been settled out of court, while litigation continues with several others.
If you believe a defective product has caused you to suffer an injury or has damaged your property, a member of our team can discuss your options and advise whether you are entitled to seek compensation. You can trust our team’s experience and legal insight to help you navigate the litigation process and seek justice for the impact caused by a defective product.
Experienced litigation solicitors at Gibson & Associates LLP
At Gibson & Associates LLP, we understand that unresolved issues can be stressful and emotionally draining. That’s why our experienced litigation solicitors provide the support and in-depth legal expertise needed for our clients to pursue the next step in conflict resolution with confidence. Litigation may be the right choice if a legal dispute cannot be resolved through negotiation or alternative dispute resolution methods; our caring team will take the time to listen and understand your issue and provide advice on the most effective way to resolve your dispute.
If you are concerned about an issue or are involved in a dispute, please get in touch with a member of our team for advice about your legal options, on (01) 536 8223 or at email [email protected].
Daireann Gibson Managing Partner of Gibson & Associates Solicitors.
Gibson & Associates Solicitors are pleased to announce that they have acquired Barron Morris Solicitors on the 30th January 2018, in Dublin. This is the first acquisition by the progressive law firm who have expanded rapidly in the last number of years. Gibson and Associates Solicitors were founded in 2012 with offices in Dublin city centre and in Letterkenny Co. Donegal, and now Incorporating Barron Morris, will additionally operate from the existing location in Raheny, Dublin.
In spite of the uncertainty of Brexit and increased marketplace competition, Gibson and Associates have a proven ability to adapt and grow within a challenging environment.
Gibson & Associates currently offer enhanced expertise across a wide range of legal areas: Personal Injury*, Conveyancing (residential & commercial), Data Protection, Wills & Probate, Insolvency Law and Immigration, the new agreement will allow the company to extend and diversify this service offering. The company mission is to change the face of Law, delivering high-quality advice and achieving the best outcomes for people across Ireland every day. This compliments Barron Morris Solicitors already established ethos of focusing on a quality service, that has helped the company have a long established and enviable reputation across Dublin and the surrounding areas.
Commenting on the expansion, Mr Gibson said “Our mission is to make a genuine difference to the public in how they access legal advice and the service they receive. We do this by removing the waffle and the hassle. By incorporating the skillsets and resources at Barron Morris, we see this as a real springboard to help us increase efficiencies for clients and make it even easier for customers to access our services.”
Conor McLaughlin joined the firm’s Letterkenny office in 2016, after gaining five years’ experience practising in Luxembourg. Conor was called to the New York bar in 2012; he qualified as a Solicitor in Ireland in 2014 and in England & Wales in 2015. He is a member of the Donegal Bar Association and practices in the areas of Litigation, Conveyancing and Bankruptcy and Data Protection.
Conor has a particular interest in GDPR compliance for business; He has written and lectured in this legal area, specifically in preparing for GDPR and is your Business GDPR ready?
Conor McLaughlin joined the firm’s Letterkenny office in 2016, after gaining five years’ experience practising in Luxembourg. Conor was called to the New York bar in 2012. He qualified as a Solicitor in Ireland in 2014 and in England and Wales in 2015. He is a member of the Donegal Bar Association and practices in the areas of Litigation, Conveyancing and Bankruptcy and Data Protection.
Conor has a particular interest in GDPR compliance for business; he has the most update knowledge in this area and is completing further studies in UCD. Conor has also written and lectured in this legal area, specifically in preparing for GDPR and is your Business GDPR ready?
Do I need a property solicitor when buying, selling, or transferring a property in Ireland can be an exciting experience, but it can also be a complex process, particularly when it comes to the legal aspects of the transaction.
Do I need a property solicitor to carry out my property conveyance?
This is where a conveyancing solicitor can make a valuable contribution. In Ireland, a conveyancing solicitor plays a crucial role in guiding you through the legal process of property transactions and ensuring that your interests are protected. In an earlier blog post, What is property conveyancing? we explained conveyancing is the process of legally transferring property ownership from one property owner to another. In this blog post, we take a closer look at when you might use a conveyancing solicitor, and how a solicitor that specialises in property transactions can help you meet the legal requirements involved in the transaction and ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible.
When should I use a conveyancing solicitor?
Property transfers are bound by strict legal requirements in Ireland. It is possible to take on your own property conveyancing, but unless you have an extensive background in property and a strong understanding of the law that applies, you may find the process challenging, or worse, make an error that jeopardises your interests in the property.
Most people associate conveyancing with buying or selling a house, however conveyancing applies in other situations too. For example, if you plan to transfer ownership of a property, such as adding a partner to the title, or gifting a home or parcel of land to a family member, a conveyancing solicitor can help you meet the legal requirements of the transfer and complete the necessary checks and paperwork for the transaction. A conveyancing solicitor can also help if you are re-mortgaging a property to make sure your mortgage paperwork is completed properly and submitted to the right agencies.
A solicitor with expert knowledge of property law and the conveyancing process is a valuable partner in any type of property transaction to make sure the process runs smoothly and your legal rights are protected.
Do I need a solicitor to buy or sell a property?
It isn’t a legal requirement to use a solicitor to purchase or sell a property in Ireland, but you will need a solicitor if you are taking out a mortgage to make a purchase. A solicitor provides in-depth knowledge about conveyancing requirements and how to deal any issues that might arise. To begin with, a property solicitor will review the legal documents associated with your transaction, such as the contract for sale, title deeds, planning permission, and building regulations, to ensure they are accurate, legally binding, and that your interests are protected. They will also carry out important property searches to find out whether there are any legal issues that could impact the property’s value or affect your ability to buy or sell the property. An experienced property solicitor will provide valuable legal advice about stamp duty, land registry and property taxes due and will handle the finances of the transaction, including arranging for the transfer of funds and ensuring your mortgage documents are in order (if a mortgage applies to your transaction). A conveyancing solicitor will make sure there are no surprises and provide you with confidence your property transaction has met all the necessary legal and financial requirements.
Do I need a solicitor to switch my mortgage?
A conveyancing solicitor will play a similar role if you decide to switch your mortgage. A re-mortgage changes your existing mortgage product to another for the same property. It can be a complex process and an experienced solicitor will thoroughly understand what legal and financial requirements have to be met. Firstly and perhaps most importantly, they will review the terms of the mortgage you plan to take and ensure it aligns with your expectations. Then they will liaise with your mortgage provider to complete legal paperwork such as the mortgage deed, and ensure that the documentation is accurate and legally binding.
With interest rates on the rise and the cost of living at an all time high, it can make sense to switch your mortgage and save money on your monthly mortgage repayment. Several providers now even offer to cover the cost of a solicitor to complete the legal paperwork, while others are offering generous cash back deals. Your expert property solicitor at Gibson & Associates can advise you about the pros and cons of mortgage switching and discuss whether it is right for you.
Do I need a solicitor to transfer ownership of my property?
You might think the process to transfer a property into another person’s name should be simple enough, but there are a number of legal requirements that must be met for the transaction to be legally binding. In addition to reviewing the legal documents associated with the transfer and conducting relevant property searches, a property solicitor can also advise on the tax implications of the property transfer. For example, stamp duty, capital gains tax and inheritance tax may apply to the property transaction and it is important you are fully aware of your financial obligations. Your property solicitor can also arrange for the transfer of funds and ensure all your financial transactions are completed in compliance with Irish legal requirements.
Why should I use a solicitor for my property conveyance?
There are several reasons we recommend you use a conveyancing solicitor. Firstly, an experienced conveyancing solicitor has specialised knowledge of property law and the legal process of buying, selling, transferring a property or switching a mortgage. They have a deep understanding of the legal requirements and potential pitfalls of property transactions, allowing them to protect your interests throughout the transaction. They also offer a degree of legal protection, helping you to avoid and manage any legal issues that arise. A conveyancing solicitor will save you time working through the legal aspects of the transaction, and can also refer you to a trusted network of property professionals including surveyors, engineers and mortgage brokers for any additional services you might need. Remember, if you are planning to take a mortgage to purchase a property, you will be required to use a conveyancing solicitor to complete the transaction.
How can Gibson & Associates help with my property conveyance?
Our team is dedicated to making sure you enjoy a seamless property transaction. That’s why we focus on offering you:
competitive, transparent fees
a speedy 21-day closing service
video-call appointments to save you travelling to our offices
expert advice on buying, selling and transferring property and re-mortgaging, and
providing you with one point of contact to support you throughout the conveyancing process.
Property transactions have the potential to be stressful but our team of experienced property solicitors take the hassle out of conveyancing, giving you complete confidence in the process and a successful outcome. To speak with a member of our conveyancing team, please call us on (01) 582 1743 today.
How do I apply for Irish citizenship? Ireland is a beautiful country with a rich cultural heritage, welcoming people and a healthy economy. It’s not surprising that thousands of people from around the world plan to apply for Irish citizenship each year. If you are one of them, you will find there are a range of routes to citizenship in Ireland. In this blog, we take a closer look at these pathways to citizenship in Ireland, and how to prepare for your application.
How do I apply for Irish citizenship by ancestry?
If you have a you may be eligible for Irish citizenship through ancestry. This is called “citizenship by descent.” This option applies even if your parents were not born in Ireland.
The application process for citizenship by descent involves registering your birth with the Department of Foreign Affairs. The online application will ask for An application fee also applies.
The Department of Foreign Affairs advises the current application processing time is 24. Citizenship is automatically granted once your application has been successfully processed and entered into the Foreign Births Register. You are then entitled to apply for an Irish passport which provides you with the right to live and work in Ireland, as well as travel freely within the European Union.
What other options do I have to apply for Irish citizenship?
Another option for obtaining Irish citizenship is through “citizenship by naturalisation.” If you have spent time in Ireland on a visa, you may be eligible to apply. Non-EU applicants must be over 18 to apply, be of good character and being legally resident in Ireland for a period of five years, including a continuous period of 365/366 days in the year immediately prior to the date of your application.
You will need to complete Form 8 to apply for citizenship by naturalisation, which is available on the Department of Justice website. A number of documents are required to prove not only your identification, but evidence of your residency permissions (stamps in your passport and/or letters issued by Immigration Service Delivery) for the previous five years. An application fee also applies. If your application is successful, you will be granted Irish citizenship and be required to attend a citizenship ceremony. You will be entitled to apply for a passport giving you the right to live and work in Ireland and travel through other states of the EU.
There is quite a bit of paperwork involved in registering a foreign birth and applying for citizenship by naturalisation, so it is worthwhile spending some time to get familiar with what documents are required. If you are unsure, or would like some advice on your application, Gibson and Associates LLP is here to help. Our friendly immigration solicitors have many years’ experience providing guidance to citizenship applicants, and are available to discuss your situation and provide advice about preparing your application.
What happens if my application for Irish citizenship is unsuccessful?
While thousands of people are granted Irish citizenship each year, some applications are unsuccessful. There are a number of reasons why an application for Irish citizenship might not be approved. Let’s take a look at the most common.
Not meeting eligibility criteria: Non-EU adult applicants have to meet specific criteria, including being of good character, making a declaration of fidelity to the State, and if applying via work or study routes, must provide evidence of their legal residency in Ireland. Failing to meet these basic criteria can result in an application for citizenship being rejected.
Providing false or incomplete information: One of the key statements on application forms insists on applicants providing true, accurate and complete information. Failing to do this can result in an application being rejected. Furthermore, giving false or misleading information is considered an offence and can come with a fine and/or imprisonment.
Criminal record: Criminal convictions may be result in an application being rejected, while certain types of convictions may make an applicant ineligible for citizenship.
Financial issues: Unpaid taxes or debts can deem an applicant unsuitable for citizenship and result in their application being rejected.
Security concerns: Should there be concerns about an applicant’s background or connection to extremist groups, the application may not be successful.
Immigration violations: Failure to provide proof of legal residency, overstaying a visa, or working or studying in Ireland without permission can risk an application being rejected.
It is important to read and understand the eligibility requirements and application criteria carefully and seek advice if you have any questions to avoid your application for citizenship being delayed or turned down.
Can I appeal a rejected application for citizenship?
While applicants that have had their application for Irish citizenship rejected do not have the right of appeal to the Department of Justice, they do have the right to re-apply. We understand having your citizenship application rejected can be extremely stressful and upsetting, especially after settling in Ireland and making a good life for yourself, and perhaps your family. At Gibson & Associates LLP, our immigration team has extensive experience helping applicants to prepare their citizenship applications and can provide you with insightful advice that gives you the best chance of a successful application.
Our expert immigration solicitors are ready to help you
Whether you plan to apply for citizenship through ancestry or other routes, it’s important to make sure you meet all the eligibility criteria and have all the necessary supporting documents before submitting your application. Sometimes the application process can be challenging for applicants. Gibson & Associates LLP is passionate about helping our clients to streamline the application process, by providing advice and support for obtaining documentation and compiling the application. If you need help, you can trust our experienced immigration solicitors to give your application the best chance of success. To find out more about applying for Irish citizenship, or for a confidential discussion about your application or an appeal, please get in touch with a member of our immigration team on (01) 536 8223 or at email [email protected].
As a consultant solicitor working for Gibson & Associates, in return for a percentage of your fees billed and paid, we will provide you with access to the following:
Are you interested in becoming a consultant solicitor
Modern office facilities
Administrative, paralegal, marketing and IT support
Finance and billing services
Case management systems
Professional indemnity insurance (PII)
Access to other specialist solicitors that can help you support your clients and generate additional income
A Guide to Becoming a Consultant Solicitor
Gibson & Associates will provide personal advice and assistance to help solicitors wishing to become consultant solicitors for the firm to do so seamlessly, so it remains ‘business as usual’ for your clients.
Our assistance with your transition will include:
Guidance through the process of becoming a consultant solicitor
Access to tax advice and planning
Personal financial planning for a smooth transition to self-employment