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Posted in [Blog General Legal Tips ] on Wednesday, July 6th, 2016

The right of access to the Courts, is a Constitutional right, which was recognised in McCauley V Minister for Posts and Telegraphs when Kenny J held, “There is a right to have recourse to the High Court to defend and vindicate a Legal Right and that is one of the personal rights of the citizen included in the General Guarantee in Article 40.3.” Solicitors’ costs are routinely slammed by the media described as “excessive” and “out of control”.  Little or no media attention is given to the fact that Solicitors commonly carry the cost of bringing a case to hearing in the hope that they will get paid promptly, on the successful conclusion of the matter.   Solicitors’ fees are regularly blamed for driving up Insurance costs.   This is not so.   In the last number of years a situation has evolved of there being serious delays in the payment of Solicitors’ costs.   These delays can run to 2 to 3 years.   This is compounded by the considerable reductions seen in Plaintiff’s costs when the matters are ultimately decided by the Taxing Master. Added to these delays one of the two current Taxing Masters is due to retire later this year and is not taking on new cases.    The second Taxing Master is due to retire in the Spring of 2017 and has a significant backlog of cases waiting to be heard.   The Legal Services Regulation Act provides for the appointment of a Legal Costs Adjudicator.  This office and regime has yet to be set up.  A combination of these factors have resulted in costs not being paid for up to 3 years following settlement of a client’s case. It is our view at Cantillons Solicitors that access to justice will be denied to our clients, unless the untenable situation in relation to Solicitors costs is urgently addressed.    How can this impasse be solved?    We at Cantillons Solicitors propose an alternative dispute resolution mechanism such as Arbitration or Mediation for the taxation of costs.  This would lead to a workable solution to this dilemma provided it is set up in a structured way.  This would not only in our view, reduce delays in clients’ costs being paid, but would significantly reduce costs also and is a win win scenario for both Plaintiffs and Defendants alike.    If it is not addressed and if Solicitors are not properly paid, and in a timely fashion, clients will in our view continue to be denied access to justice. Contact us at Cantillons Solicitors at +353 (0)21 -4275673 or if you would like more information.* In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement. Share on Social

Aisling Maher



Aisling joined Cantillons in 2015 having graduated with an Honours Bachelor in Civil Law (International) Degree from University College Cork. As part of this degree Aisling spent a year studying at Brooklyn Law School in New York where she gained an indelible insight into American legal principles, practice and procedure.

Prior to completing her traineeship with Cantillons, Aisling worked with a private client Immigration Law Firm in New York. Thereafter, she joined a large Corporate Law Firm in Dublin where she gained invaluable experience working in the EU, Competition and Public Procurement Department and the Employment Department working on both contentious and non-contentious matters.

Aisling previously worked in our General Litigation Department and was involved in a wide variety of cases including personal injury claims, road traffic accidents, accidents at work, contract disputes, employment disputes, claims against local authorities and claims against the HSE.

Aisling is currently working in our Medical Negligence Litigation Department and has experience working on various cases involving birth injuries, cancer misdiagnosis, surgical errors and fatal claims.


  • Honours Bachelor of Civil Law (International) Degree
    Completed Law Society Professional Practice Courses at Blackhall Place, Dublin

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