A core practice area for MacGuill & Company is the promotion and defence of human rights, whether based on the Irish Constitution, the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, the European Convention on Human Rights, or other international instruments.

The firm has acted in many of the leading cases before the Irish courts, and we successfully appeared before the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

A former chair of the Law Society’s Human Rights Committee, James MacGuill has frequently been invited to contribute to public debate on the European Convention on Human Rights Act 2003.

The firm has extensive experience in relying on this legislation before the Irish courts, and we successfully represented the first applicant who relied on the act, in Sweetman V DPP.

Because of our experience, we are often called upon to assist colleagues in this area.

  • Magee v Ireland

Death in police custody – lack of legal aid for participation in inquest – right to life – right to fair procedures – settlement reached with Irish Government

  • Nic Gibb v Ireland

Fatal shooting by Gardai – right to life -delay -inadequacies in inquest procedure -no effective investigation -right to fair procedures

  • Mulligan v Governor of Portloaise Prison

Prisoner’s rights – first high court “slopping out” case -right to bodily integrity and to health – right not to be subjected to torture, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment

  • TE v Ireland and the Attorney General

Constitutional challenge to the sex offenders act 2001 – issue of retrospectivity of application of sex offenders register

  • Barry v Sentence Review Group

Role of sentence review group – fair procedures – whether prisoner entitled to legal representation – right to access to documents being considered by sentence review group

  • Foley v Independent Newspapers

Right to privacy – right to life and bodily integrity – freedom of the press – curtailment of freedom of expression where risk to life

  • D v Ireland

Right to travel abortion – information

  • DPP v JB

Miscarriage of justice – setting aside plea of guilty – 14 year sentence and conviction quashed – followed by nolle prosequi


James MacGuill

E: james.macguill@macguill.ie
P:+353 (42) 933 4026

Aimée McCumiskey

E: aimee.mccumiskey@macguill.ie
P:+353 (42) 933 4026

Elise Martin-Vignerte

E: elise.martin-vignerte@macguill.ie
P:+353 (1) 878 7022