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Frequently Asked Legal Questions

Medical Negligence

What is medical negligence?
Medical malpractice is professional negligence by act or omission by a health care provider in which care provided deviates from accepted standards of practice in the medical community and causes injury or death to the patient, with most cases involving medical error. Standards and regulations for medical malpractice vary by country and jurisdiction within countries. Medical professionals may obtain professional liability insurances to offset the risk and costs of lawsuits based on medical malpractice

Personal Injury

What is personal injury?
Personal injury is a legal term for an injury to the body, mind or emotions, as opposed to an injury to property. The term is most commonly used to refer to a type of tort lawsuit alleging that the plaintiff's injury has been caused by the negligence of another, but also arises in defamation torts.

The most common types of personal injury claims are road traffic accidents, accidents at work, tripping accidents, assault claims, accidents in the home, product defect accidents (product liability) and holiday accidents. The term personal injury also incorporates medical and dental accidents (which lead to numerous medical negligence claims every year) and conditions that are often classified as industrial disease cases, including asbestosis and peritoneal mesothelioma, chest diseases (e.g. emphysema, pneumoconiosis, silicosis, chronic bronchitis, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and chronic obstructive airways disease), vibration white finger, occupational deafness, occupational stress, contact dermititis, and repetitive strain injury cases.

If the negligence of another party can be proved, the injured party may be entitled to monetary compensation from that party.

Corporate Law

What is corporate law? 
Corporate law (also "company" or "corporations" law) is the study of how shareholders, directors, employees, creditors, and other stakeholders such as consumers, the community and the environment interact with one another under the internal rules of the firm. Corporate law is a part of a broader companies law (or law of business associations). Other types of business associations can include partnerships, or trusts (like a pension fund), or companies limited by guarantee (like some universities or charities). Corporate law is about big business, which has separate legal personality, with limited liability or unlimited liability for its members or shareholders, who buy and sell their stocks depending on the performance of the board of directors. It deals with the firms that are incorporated or registered under the corporate or company law of a sovereign state or their subnational states. The four defining characteristics of the modern corporation are:

  • Separate Legal Personality of the corporation (the right to sue and be sued in its own name i.e. the law treats the company as a human being)
  • Limited Liability of the shareholders (so that when the company is insolvent, they only owe the money that they subscribed for in shares)
  • Shares (usually on a stock exchange, such as the London Stock Exchange, New York Stock Exchange, Euronext in Paris or BM&F Bovespa in Sao Paulo)
  • Delegated Management, in other words, control of the company placed in the hands of a board of directors

In most developed countries outside of the English speaking world, company boards are appointed as representatives of both shareholders and employees to "codetermine" company strategy. Corporate law is often divided into corporate governance (which concerns the various power relations within a corporation) and corporate finance (which concerns the rules on how capital is used). 

Employment Law

What is employment law?
Employment law (also called labor law) is the body of laws, administrative rulings, and precedents which address the legal rights of, and restrictions on, working people and their organizations. As such, it mediates many aspects of the relationship between trade unions, employers and employees. In Canada, employment laws related to unionized workplaces are differentiated from those relating to particular individuals. In most countries however, no such distinction is made. However, there are two broad categories of labour law. First, collective labour law relates to the tripartite relationship between employee, employer and union. Second, individual labour law concerns employees' rights at work and through the contract for work. The labour movement has been instrumental in the enacting of laws protecting labour rights in the 19th and 20th centuries. Labour rights have been integral to the social and economic development since the Industrial Revolution. Employment standards are social norms (in some cases also technical standards) for the minimum socially acceptable conditions under which employees or contractors will work. Government agencies (such as the former U.S. Employment Standards Administration) enforce employment standards codified by labour law (legislative, regulatory, or judicial).

Property

What is conveyancing/property law? 
In law, conveyancing is the transfer of legal title of property from one person to another, or the granting of an encumbrance such as a mortgage or a lien.

A typical conveyancing transaction contains two major landmarks: the exchange of contracts (whereby equitable title passes) and completion (whereby legal title passes). Conveyancing occurs in three stages: before contract, before completion and after completion.

A buyer of real property must ensure that he or she obtains a good and marketable 'title' to the land; i.e., that the seller is the owner, has the right to sell the property, and there is no factor which would impede a mortgage or re-sale.
A system of conveyancing is usually designed to ensure that the buyer secures title to the land together with all the rights that run with the land, and is notified of any restrictions in advance of purchase. In most mature jurisdictions, conveyancing is facilitated by a system of land registration which is designed to encourage reliance on public records and assure purchasers of land that they are taking good title. 

Insolvency

What is insolvency? 
Insolvency means the inability to pay one's debts as they fall due. Usually used to refer to a business, insolvency refers to the inability of a company to pay off its debts.
Business insolvency is defined in two different ways:

  • Cash flow insolvency - Unable to pay debts as they fall due.
  • Balance sheet insolvency - Having negative net assets – in other words, liabilities exceed assets. 

A business may be 'cash flow insolvent' but 'balance sheet solvent' if it holds illiquid assets, particularly against short term debt that it cannot immediately realize if called upon to do so. Conversely, a business can have negative net assets showing on its balance sheet but still be cash flow solvent if ongoing revenue is able to meet debt obligations, and thus avoid default – for instance, if it holds long term debt. Many large companies operate permanently in this state.

Insolvency is not a synonym for bankruptcy, which is a determination of insolvency made by a court of law with resulting legal orders intended to resolve the insolvency.

Debt Recovery

What is debt recovery?
A collection agency is a business that pursues payments of debts owed by individuals or businesses. Most collection agencies operate as agents of creditors and collect debts for a fee or percentage of the total amount owed.

There are many types of collection agencies. First-party agencies are oftentimes subsidiaries of the original company the debt is owed to. Third-party agencies are separate companies contracted by a company to collect debts on their behalf for a fee. Debt buyers purchase the debt at a percentage of its value, then attempt to collect it. Each country has its own rules and regulations regarding them.

Estate Planning

What is a Will?

A Will or testament is a legal declaration by which a person, the testator, names one or more persons to manage his/her estate and provides for the transfer of his/her property at death. For the devolution of property not disposed of by will, see inheritance and intestacy.

In the strictest sense, a "will" has historically been limited to real property while "testament" applies only to dispositions of personal property (thus giving rise to the popular title of the document as "Last Will and Testament"), though this distinction is seldom observed today. A will may also create a testamentary trust that is effective only after the death of the testator.

Commercial Litigation

What is Commercial Litigation?
Commercial law (also known as business law, which covers also corporate law) is the body of law that governs business and commercial transactions. It is often considered to be a branch of civil law and deals with issues of both private law and public law.

Commercial law includes, within its compass, such titles as principal and agent; carriage by land and sea; merchant shipping; guarantee; marine, fire, life, and accident insurance; bills of exchange and partnership. It can also be understood to regulate corporate contracts, hiring practices, and the manufacture and sales of consumer goods. Many countries have adopted civil codes that contain comprehensive statements of their commercial law.

Family Law

What is Family Law?
Family law is an area of the law that deals with family-related issues and domestic relations including:

  • the nature of marriage, civil unions, and domestic partnerships;
  • issues arising throughout marriage, including spousal abuse, legitimacy, adoption, surrogacy, child abuse, and child abduction
  • the termination of the relationship and ancillary matters including divorce, annulment, property settlements, alimony, and parental responsibility orders (in the United States, child custody and visitation, child support and alimony awards).
  • Paternity fraud and testing

Sligo

Law Chambers
3 Wine Street
Sligo
Ireland

T: +353(0)71 916 2032
F: +353(0)71 916 9115
DX: 5020 Sligo

Boyle

Crescent House
Boyle
Co Roscommon
Ireland

T: +353(0)71 966 2019
F: +353(0)71 966 2869
DX: 65004 Boyle

Dublin

Unit 1.1
Smithfield Business Centre
The Distillers Building Smithfield
Dublin, Ireland

T: +353(01) 878 2792

Ballina

Tone Street
Ballina
Co. Mayo
Ireland

T: +353 (0)96 71618

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