EXPERTISE 

Maura is Partner and Head of the Dispute Resolution Group. She also leads the Employment Law Group in Ireland.

Maura’s disputes practice has involved the management of large scale litigation. This has recently included Commercial Court proceedings relating to professional negligence in the financial sector, management of a large e-discovery process, acting in a landmark case relating to the “Gig Economy” and the status of workers. In addition to representing clients in the Courts, particularly the High Court and Commercial Court, Maura has advised extensively on alternative dispute resolution procedures including mediation. Maura’s practice includes advice on regulatory matters, including professional conduct investigations and decision making, administrative law and legal proceedings. She has advised on statutory investigations, tribunals of inquiry and directors’ liability for statutory offences.

Having practised for many years in the area of employment law Maura’s practice includes advising employers and employees on all aspects of employment law including contentious and non-contentious matters. She has been involved in many commercial transactions and has considerable experience of employment law issues arising in the context of mergers and acquisitions, including transfer of undertakings issues. She also advises on a contractual matters, development of policies and procedures, management of disciplinary, performance, absence and other processes. This includes regularly appearing in the Workplace Relations Commission, the Labour Court and the Civil Courts. Data privacy and dealing with data access requests under GDPR is a feature of many cases in which we are involved. Most recently she has advised extensively on Covid-19 related issues, restructurings, redundancies and legislative changes.

EXPERIENCE

Recent Experience includes advising:

Dispute Resolution 

  • A body for property, land & construction professionals as the statutory regulator under the Building Control Act 2007 in the management of professional conduct of registered building surveyors. 
  • The trustees of a charity arising from the discovery of financial irregularities, liaison with the Charities Regulator, advising on the management of internal investigation. 
  • A professional regulator in relation to its professional education programme for the education of members of the society.
  • A fast food operator, which owns a large number of Domino's Pizza franchises in Ireland, in the first Irish “gig economy” case in which we are awaiting the decision of the Court of Appeal. The outcome of the case will have significant implications for our client but is also expected to have widespread application. 

Employment 

  • An international retailer. Having represented this client for many years, Maura is a trusted advisor to the HR specialists in the company and supports the team in relation to a wide range of employment and industrial relations matters to include restructuring, redundancies, absence management and representation in the Workplace Relations Commission and other adjudication forums. 
  • A financial services company: Having worked with this client for over 20 years Maura provides the full range of supports to this organisation to include recently updating the employment manual to reflect changes in law and practice.
  • A large-scale client which owns and manages a range of entertainment venues on contracts for its outsourced services for the management of entertainment venues. Advice on contractual matters. 
  • A regulated charity in relation to a High Court claim by an employee alleging personal injury arising from alleged bullying/undermining of dignity at work.
  • A large hotel operator, representing this group in their ownership and management of a range of hospitality businesses including advice on a range of employment, equality and equal status claims arising from their business operations. 
Testimonials

“Maura is perfectly in tune with market developments and always displays an ability to think laterally.”
Chambers Europe, 2022

“I can confidently say that over 30 years experience in different industries she is the best I have encountered. She has a strong team with her and their qualities are about understanding our business and being expert on employment legislation, people problems and resolving disputes.”
Legal 500 EMEA, 2021

“Maura is at the top of her profession and is a hands on person, who exudes efficiency and capability. She is the person you want on your side in a difficult situation.”
Legal 500 EMEA, 2021

“Maura is one of the most knowledgeable and experienced employment lawyers in the country. Her preparation levels are meticulous and all decisions are weighed empirically. Maura maintains an in depth knowledge of all her cases, while also sustaining high responsiveness. I would recommend Maura to any client.”
Legal 500 EMEA, 2021

“…the other party will be in no doubt that you are extremely well advised. Maura grasps complex commercial detail immediately and gives a very unambiguous appraisal of the situation.
Legal 500 EMEA, 2021

“She is able to decipher the other parties posturing with remarkable accuracy. She is also excellent in communicating and brokering with the other party that invariably results in a mutually beneficial agreement. Overall working with Maura and Eugene F Collins instils huge confidence and reassurance you are in safe hands.”
Legal 500 EMEA, 2021

“Maura provides incisive, expert advice as well as pragmatic guidance in negotiations…her attention to detail is absolutely flawless.” 
Chambers Europe, 2021

“Headed by the ‘extremely effective’ Maura Connolly…she is always on top of the brief and ensures a high standard of service level is maintained across the team.”
Legal 500 EMEA, 2020

“Her knowledge, advice and communication skills are excellent…she understands our needs and supports us with empathy and professionalism on a very timely basis.”
Chambers Europe, 2019

“Efficient and self-assured Maura Connolly”
Legal 500 EMEA, 2019

“She is an extremely impressive lawyer and has excellent knowledge of all employment matters.”
Chambers Europe, 2019

Professional Memberships

Maura is a former Chair of the Law Society’s Employment and Equality Law Committee (2012 to 2015). She is also a member of the European Employment Lawyers Association, the Employment Law Association of Ireland, the Association of Pension Lawyers Ireland and the Health & Safety Lawyers Association of Ireland.

Maura has made presentations to a number of bodies including the Law Society of Ireland, Legal Island, La Touche Training and to clients. Maura also lectures to the Law Society’s Diploma in Employment law and has been appointed to act as mentor on the Law Society’s Masters programme for Employment Law.

Publications
Education
  • University College Dublin (2018), Professional Diploma in Professional Regulation. 
  • Honorable Society of King’s Inns (2015), Advanced Diploma in Corporate, White-Collar and Regulatory Crime
  • Law Society of Ireland, Admitted as a solicitor in 1993
  • LL.B. (1990), The University of Dublin, Trinity College
Languages

French