Thursday 20 June 2019

Madigan's family's law firm prides itself as 'one of the most respected'

Legal experts: Josepha Madigan. Photo: Justin Farrelly
Legal experts: Josepha Madigan. Photo: Justin Farrelly
Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

Madigans Solicitors - which represented Fine Gael TD Maria Bailey in her legal action against a Dublin Hotel - describes itself as "one of Ireland's most respected law firms".

Its involvement in the case has seen one of its former solicitors, Culture Minister Josepha Madigan, dragged into the controversy over Ms Bailey's claim.

Though Ms Bailey has now dropped the action she took after she fell off a swing in the Dean Hotel, Ms Madigan has faced questions over whether or not she advised her Fine Gael colleague on the case before she left the firm.

Ms Madigan has refused to clarify this, citing "client- solicitor confidentiality".

She left Madigans Solicitors in June 2017. Her brother Patrick now owns the Molesworth Street-based firm which was established by their father Paddy Snr more than 40 years ago.

Mr Madigan, who died in 2014, was a former Fianna Fáil and later Independent councillor in Dún Laoghaire.

An 'Irish Times' obituary said he was "a most enthusiastic litigator on his own behalf and on behalf of property owners and landlords in the 1980s". It said he successfully challenged the constitutionality of rent control laws.

He won damages of £30,000 from the 'Irish Press' for libel in 1987.

It had published a story suggesting he had "willingly lashed out" £300 at a Fianna Fáil fundraising event for a map of Charles Haughey's island, Innisvickillane, in the belief the map was unique.

An 'Irish Press' story alleged Mr Madigan had complained to Mr Haughey when he discovered the truth, but the paper admitted this was not true and apologised.

Madigans Solicitors' website lists areas of expertise including personal injury, employment law, property/conveyance and family law.

Ms Madigan specialised in family law when she worked at the firm and has frequently spoken of how this experience inspired her to push for a cut in the waiting time for divorce.

A referendum based on her proposals passed last month and the Oireachtas will now have the power to legislate in the area.

Ms Madigan is the author of a book entitled 'Appropriate Dispute Resolution (ADR) in Ireland' and the publication is featured on the Madigans Solicitors' website.

Patrick Madigan's specialities are listed as commercial dispute resolution and commercial mediator.

Ms Madigan may have left the firm but she and her brother were listed as defendants in a High Court action taken by KBC Bank Ireland in December 2017.

The case was reported to relate to a property that Madigans Solicitors had dealings with many years ago.

Both Jospeha Madigan and Patrick Madigan declined to comment on the case last night, as it was said to be ongoing.

Irish Independent

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