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A

Acceptance

The act of accepting an offer, agreement, or contract. It may be by words or by conduct.

Acquisition

The process of acquiring ownership or control of something.

Action

A legal proceeding or lawsuit.

Adverse Possession

The acquisition of a right over a property by a third party through continuous and unchallenged occupation without acknowledging the true owner for a certain period of time.

Affidavit

A written statement of fact, made under oath or affirmation, which allows evidence to be presented to the court.

Appeal

The transfer of a case from a lower to a higher court, to review and potentially reverse or modify the lower court's decision.

Appellant

The party who appeals a lower court's decision.

Arrears

Unpaid or overdue debts or payments.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) broadly refers to the ability of computing technologies and software to perform tasks to simulate human cognition and learning. Learn more about our Artificial Intelligence (AI) expertise.

Asset Finance

The use of assets as collateral for a loan or lease. The financing may involve a single asset or a number of assets. The main asset financing structures are in the form of (i) a secured lending or (ii) a lease or a combination of both.

B

Beneficiary

A person or entity that receives a benefit or is entitled to receive a benefit under a legal instrument, such as a will or trust.

Breach of Contract

A refusal or failure to fulfill the terms of a contract.

Burden of Proof

The obligation to prove a fact or set of facts in a legal proceeding. Eg in a criminal case, the burden of proving the guilt of the accused rests on the prosecution; in a negligence case, the burden of proving negligence rests on the plaintiff.

C

Class Action

A class action is a legal mechanism which allows a member of a group of persons to bring an action on behalf of themselves and other members of the group to collectively sue another party.

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Collateral

Property or assets that are provided as security for a loan or other obligation. In the event that such loan or obligation fails to be repaid/met, the chargee (the person to whom the collateral was provided) will have recourse to the collateral.

Collective Redress

Collective redress is a system which allows claimants in an action to take one joint case rather than multiple individual cases.

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Consideration

Something of value given in exchange for a promise or performance in a contract.

Consumer Representative Actions

Actions brought by qualified entities before national courts or administrative authorities on behalf of groups of consumers to seek injunctive measures eg to stop a trader's unlawful practices.

Contributory Negligence

Contributory negligence refers to a situation where the plaintiff is partially responsible for the harm they have suffered. This principle is used to determine the degree of responsibility each party holds in a negligence claim. It can significantly impact the outcome of a case.

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Conveyance

The transfer of ownership or title of real property.

Creditors

A person or company you owe money, goods or services to.

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D

Damages

Monetary compensation awarded for loss suffered by a person or injury.

De Facto

In fact, in reality, as opposed to in law.

Debt Warehousing

A practice in financial management where debts are accumulated and processed together at a later date.

Defendant

A person against whom an action, information, or other civil proceeding is brought; also a person charged with a criminal offence.

Discovery

The process where each party to an action discloses to each other on affidavit all documents in their posession, custody or power that are relevant to the proceedings.

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Domicile

The place where a person has their permanent home or residence.

Due Diligence

The process of investigation or audit of documents which underpin a company or organisation before a business sale transaction.

Duty of Candour

A legal obligation to be open and honest about any mistakes or errors that may have occurred in a professional setting. Read our insight on Duty of Candour in Public Law Proceedings.

E

ESG

ESG stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance. These are the three central factors in measuring the sustainability and ethical impact of an investment in a company. This concept is gaining significant traction, as it provides a comprehensive way to evaluate the long-term viability and ethical considerations of companies' operations.

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Ex gratia

Describing something done or given as a favour rather than a legal obligation.

Execution Order

A court order granted in respect of a debt. The claimant may use this order to recover the debt owed through enforcement procedures.

F

Fiduciary

A person or entity that holds a position of trust and responsibility for the benefit of others, such as a trustee or executor. The general rule is that a person in a fiduciary position is not entitled to make a profit and he is not allowed to put himself in a position where his interest and his duty conflict.

Force Majeure

An event or circumstance, such as war, natural disaster, or pandemics, that is beyond the control of the parties to a contract and excuses them from performing their obligations.

G

Green Leases

Leases that incorporate environmental sustainability or performance requirements and goals.

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H

Holding Company

A company that controls another company usually by owning more than half of its shares.

I

Indemnity

Protection or security against a loss or liability.

Injunction

Injunctions in Irish law are versatile and powerful legal tools, crucial for ensuring justice and fairness in various legal disputes.

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Insolvency

The state of ceasing to pay one's debts in the ordinary course of business or being unable to pay one's debts as they become due. Learn about our Insolvency and Restructuring expertise.

Inter Partes

Between the parties to a legal proceeding or action.

J

Joint Venture

A business venture or project that is undertaken by two or more parties.

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Judicial Review

Judicial review is a court procedure that allows individuals and corporates to challenge decisions or omissions of public bodies. The process is used when public bodies exercise, or don’t exercise, their public law functions, rather than when they operate in the private law sphere, eg, in breaching a contract.

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L

Land Value Sharing

A system in which a portion of the increase in value of land is shared between the land owner and the government or local authority. Read our related content:

Lease

A legal agreement in which a landlord grants a tenant the right to occupy a property in exchange for rent.

Liability

Legal responsibility or accountability for an act or omission, or the amount owed.

Litigation

The process of taking legal action or pursuing a legal dispute in court, by parties who are known as litigants. Learn about our dispute resolution expertise.

M

Mediation

A voluntary process of dispute resolution where an independent third party assists the parties to the dispute to reach an agreement to resolve the dispute.

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Merger

A process by national law where two or more companies or business entities combine into a single entity by operation of law. Learn about our Mergers & Acquisitions expertise.

Mitigation of Damages

Mitigation of damages refers to the steps that a party takes to act reasonably to minimise or reduce the amount of damages that they may be seeking to recover as part of a claim. It is a principle in Irish contract law and in tort law whereby a claimant cannot recover damages from a defendant for losses which the claimant could reasonably have avoided. This is because the loss is regarded as flowing not from the defendant's wrong but from the claimant's unreasonable behaviour.

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N

Negligence

The breach of a legal duty of care by act or omission, which a reasonable person would not have done in the circumstances and where damage is caused to the party to whom the duty is owed.

O

Opinion

A judge's written explanation of the decision of the court.

P

Plaintiff

A person who brings a legal action against another.

Product Liability

Product liability refers to the legal responsibility imposed on a manufacturer, distributor, or seller for producing or selling a defective product that causes injury or harm to a consumer.

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Q

Qualifying Investor Alternative Investment Fund (QIAIF)

A Qualifying Investor Alternative Investment Fund (QIAIF) is a regulated investment fund vehicle which is authorised and regulated by the Central Bank.

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R

Redundancy

A situation where an employee is dismissed from their job due to the complete or partial closing down of their place of employment, or due to a decrease in the employer's requirements for employees of their kind and qualifications. Read our related content:

Retail Investor Alternative Investment Fund (RIAIF)

A RIAIF is an alternative investment fund (AIF) authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland and which may be marketed to retail investors. An AIF is a type of collective investing where funds are raised from a number of investors with a view to investing them in accordance with a defined investment policy.

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S

SEAR

The Central Bank (Individual Accountability Framework) Act 2023 provides for the first Individual Accountability Framework (IAF) in Irish financial regulation. The Senior Executive Accountability Regime (SEAR) is a key pillar requiring in-scope firms to set out clearly and fully where responsibility and decision-making lie within the firm’s senior management.

Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV)

Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV): a legal entity that is created for a specific purpose or transaction, such as a limited partnership, trust, or corporation. Learn about our SPV expertise.

T

Trade mark

A symbol, word, or phrase that is used to identify and distinguish a product or service from those of other manufacturers, businesses or providers. The Intellectual Property Office of Ireland provides that a trade mark may consist of “words, (including personal names), designs, logos, letters, numerals or the shape of goods or of their packaging, or of other signs or indications that are capable of others.” It can be registered and legally protected to prevent others from using it without permission.

Trademark Licence

A legal agreement that allows a person or company to use a registered trademark in exchange for payment or other consideration.

TUPE

Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations are a set of employment laws that protect the rights and benefits of employees when a business or undertaking is transferred from one employer to another.

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Turbary Rights

The right to cut peat or turf for fuel from the land of another.

U

Undertaking

A promise or pledge which can be enforced by law.

Unfair Dismissal

A situation in which an employee is dismissed from their job and, having regard for all the circumstances, without substantial grounds justifying the dismissal.

V

Vacant Possession

The typical basis on which a seller or tenant must deliver possession of a property to a buyer or landlord and, in general terms, means that the property is free of any occupiers, items or third party interests.

Vacant Site Levy

A tax that is imposed on the owners of vacant or idle land which is entered on the Vacant Sites Register under the Urban Regeneration and Housing Act 2015 (as amended).

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Vicarious Liability

Where one person is legally responsible for the acts of another person. An example would be that an employer is normally vicariously liable for the acts of its employee.

W

Warranties

Promises or guarantees from one party to another as to the state of affairs subject to the contract or agreement. Breach of warranty will only give rise to a successful claim in damages if the claiming party can prove breach and quantifiable loss.

Whistleblowing

The act of disclosing information by a worker about illegal or unethical conduct or practices within an organisation or public body that comes to the worker’s attention in the course of their work. Whistleblowing is known as a “protected disclosure” under relevant Irish legislation.

Without Prejudice

A phrase that is used to indicate that a written or oral communication, made by a party in a civil action, is made without prejudice to the rights or interests of the parties involved and cannot be used as evidence against the party making them.

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Z

Zoning

The act of designating land into "zones", reserved for different purposes, such as residential or commercial development. Each of these zones has a set of restrictions for new development that differs from other zones.

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