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Michelle Ní Longáin
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Michelle is a partner in the Employment Department and is the firm's Compliance Partner. She has extensive experience in employment, equality and administrative law. Michelle qualified as a solicitor in Northern Ireland practising there in employment and equality law from 1994, moving to England and Wales in 1996 and returning to Ireland in 1999 when she joined the firm. Michelle advises Public and Private Sector clients, primarily employers, on complex areas of employment, equality and administrative law.

As well as being head of the firm’s Public Sector Group, Michelle has been a member of Council of the Law Society of Ireland for over a decade and was a member of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland from 2007-2013. Michelle's membership of the Councils of two regulatory bodies and many of their committees inform her advices to clients, particularly in the public and regulatory sector. Michelle has strong experience in advising and representing clients in internal and external matters and in all legal fora. Michelle provides training to clients and in public lectures including the Law Society professional training and diploma programmes.

Key experience

  • Advising the Local Authority Sector, including its Management Agency, on employment policies and their implementation and representing Local Authorities in litigation around the country.
  • Advising clients in the Health Sector on matters involving medical consultants and staff at all levels and acting High Court and Supreme Court litigation.
  • Advising Company Boards in relation to employment matters at the most senior levels.
  • Advising Irish Plcs and multinationals in relation to major redundancy exercises and their handling of sensitive employment law disputes and litigation.
  • Advising public sector clients on freedom of information obligations and advising public and private sector clients on their data protection obligations.
  • Advising on equality implications of employee benefit packages including severance schemes and bonuses.
  • Advising and representing clients on all areas of equality law at all levels, including equal status matters. 

Qualifications

  • LLB (Hons, Queens University Belfast)
  • Michelle is also co-author of the Law Society employment law manual, the Law Society's discrimination law manual and Tolley's employment law.

Memberships

  • Law Society of Ireland
  • Council of Law Society of Ireland
  • Council of Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland
  • Dublin Solicitors Bar Association

Recommendations

Ranked by Chambers & Partners Europe 2019 as a Tier 1 Lawyer. - Chambers Europe 2019

Michelle Ní Longáin, who ‘combines detailed employment law expertise with a wealth of practical experience of industrial relations’, is acting as lead counsel to the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform on the implementation of a set of new HR policies, which were drafted by the firm. - Legal 500 2019

Michelle Ní Longáin assists high-profile clients with HR policies regarding disciplinary procedures, dismissals and performance management. One client describes her as "knowledgeable" and "very responsive." - Chambers Europe 2019 

Michelle Ní Longáin is widely acclaimed, with one client describing her as an "expert on employment law issues and in particular employment equality legislation. She is very impressive in her experience and advice on this area of law. She is also very nice to deal with." - Chambers Europe, 2018

Michelle Ní Longáin provides ‘balanced, clear and well-presented advice’ - Legal 500, 2018

Employment specialist Michelle Ní Longáin heads the (Public Sector) team and has ‘excellent civil service knowledge’. - Legal 500, 2017

Michelle Ní Longáin assists public bodies and entities with highly sensitive labour and employment issues. Clients describe her as "a recognised expert" and "very authoritative and convincing in equality law." - Chambers Europe, 2017

Sources describe Michelle Ní Longáin as a "very good, high-level adviser" who offers specialised employment advice. Her top-end expertise covers public sector and equality cases, alongside complex work on high-value executive exit cases. - Chambers Europe, 2016

ByrneWallace is well regarded for its work representing public sector entities in litigation and in relation to legislative reforms, acting with ‘assured preparedness’...Practice head Michelle Ní Longáin specialises in employment and administrative matters. - Legal 500, 2016

The ‘excellent’ Michelle Ní Longáin heads ByrneWallace’s public sector practice - Legal 500, 2015

Equality expert and top-rated figure Michelle Ní Longáin  "is constructive in her approach to the issues," according to impressed clients. She recently represented Dublin City Council in High Court proceedings brought by an employee alleging breaches of contractual and statutory obligations. - Chambers & Partners, 2015 

 Michelle Ní Longáin is ‘effective’ Legal 500, 2015

Michelle Ní Longáin “does quality work”, according to interviewees. She was particularly commended for her expertise in equality-related matters. - Chambers and Partners.