Neil qualified as a solicitor in January 2010 and worked in general practice where he was involved in a broad range of litigation matters before joining Augustus Cullen Law’s medical negligence team in 2012. Since joining Augustus Cullen Law, Neil has successfully concluded numerous medical negligence actions including catastrophic birth injury and spinal injury cases together with matters arising out the misdiagnosis of cancer, negligent surgical procedures, nerve damage, orthopaedic injuries and gynaecological injuries. Neil has also acted for a large number of patients who received DePuy hip implants which were the subject of a global recall in 2010 due to a defect in the product.
Neil has addressed the Oireachtas Health Committee on healthcare issues and has also lectured and tutored on the Law Society of Ireland’s Medical Law & Litigation course.
Jamie lectures regularly in Medical Law & Litigation at the Law Society on the Professional Practice Course. Jamie has also lectured on the Post Graduate Diploma in Forensic Medicine at UCD and been invited to address a healthcare conference organised by a multinational medical devices and pharmaceutical company.
Recent Cases of Note
ACL secure €900,000 damages for Plaintiff for alleged long-term steroid over-dosage Read More
Augustus Cullen Law secure €1 million interim settlement and apology from Temple Street Hospital for 7 year old boy Read More
Neville v St Michael’s College & St Vincent’s UniversityHospital
Jamie acted on behalf of Lucas Neville in a medical negligence and personal injuries claim against St Michael’s College, Dublin and St Vincent’s University Hospital which was settled for €2.75 million on 24th March 2014. Lucas suffered a severe brain injury during the course of a rugby match against St Mary’s College, Rathmines in November 2009.
Unfortunately he had suffered a previous concussion which was not diagnosed at the Emergency Department of St Vincent’s University Hospital and had been returned to contact sports within the internationally approved protocol for management of head injuries in rugby of 21 days. Read More
Warnock v. National Maternity Hospital 2008/1296P This case concerned the failure on the part of a Specialist Registrar to diagnose a third degree perineal tear following an instrumental delivery at the Defendant hospital. The case was fully defended and the Plaintiff was ultimately successful following a 10 day trial before the President of the High Court. Read More
Davoren v. HSE & Others
This was a wrongful death claim brought by the widow of a farmer who tragically died in August 2003 at University College Hospital, Galway. Liability was eventually admitted some 7 years following his death and the case was heard before Mr Justice O’Neill in the High Court in November 2010 on the issue of damages. A novel claim was made by the widow that she and her four young children had lost an inheritance as a result of the admitted negligence of the Defendants. In a landmark judgment delivered by Mr Justice O’Neill in December 2011 damages of over €1.5 million and costs were awarded to the widow and her family. Read More
Darragh O’Leary Crowley v HSE
An interim payment of over €2.15 million and costs was achieved on behalf of the minor Plaintiff who suffers from severe spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy arising out of the admitted negligence on the part of the Defendant for the management of his birth at the Mid-Western Regional Maternity Hospital in July 2005. Read More…
Gillian is an MA (Hons) graduate of University College Dublin and has been a practising litigation solicitor for over 30 years. Gillian joined ACL in 2001. Prior to this she ran her own successful private practice for over 10 years specialising in defending medical negligence actions on behalf of various health boards. She now specialises solely in complex medical negligence litigation with ACL.
Conroy –v– Rotunda Hospital
Lump sum damages award of €5,250,000 plus costs in 2009. Read more…
Sheehan –v– Dr David Corr
Again, in the area of Cerebral palsy arising from an Obstetricians failure to diagnose rhesus incompatibility disease (involving anti-E antibodies) during pregnancy, a two year interim award of €1.9million was made. October 2011 Read more…
After an 8 day Trial further interim award for two years only in the sum of €635,000 plus costs. November 2013 Read more…
Cian Brady –v– Rotunda Hospital
Cerebral Palsy arising from negligent mis-management of a neonatal infant with symptomatic hypo-glycaemia/hypothermia and not properly diagnosed. Infant suffered serious brain damage. Award of €5.5 million plus costs – 2012 Read more…
Malone –v– Our Lady’s Hospital For Sick Children and Others
Complex action concerning acquired neurological injury of an infant resulting from the excessive use of chemotherapy in treating childhood leukemia with an award of €2.7 million and costs. October 2008 Read more…
B –v– Nicholas Jermyn
Proceedings were initiated on behalf of the Plaintiff for failure to diagnose breast cancer resulting in mastectomy and removal of spleen. The case settled 2 months before Trial for the sum of €400,000.00 plus costs. September 2008
Interim award in February 2011 was €2.4 million and costs. Read more... April 2013, further interim award for one year only €310,000 plus costs. Read more… June 2014 – Third interim award for three years –€895,000 plus costs. Read more...
July 2017, Plaintiff Receives 4th Interim Award Totalling €1.6 million
Joice lectures and tutors regularly in Medical Law and Litigation at the Law Society on the professional practice course. Over the past 14 years Joice has practiced exclusively in the area of medical negligence and more recently has been primarily involved in catastrophic injury and birth injury cases. She has extensive experience of cases involving Interim Payment Orders in Ireland dating back to one of the earliest interim payments in a high value birth injury claim in May 2010. Joice has also handled very complex birth injury cases including those involving genetic and metabolic investigations by the Defendants.
Recent Cases of Note
Augustus Cullen Law secures €6 million lump sum payment for 20 year old Donegal Woman with Cerebral Palsy Read more.
Barry v National Maternity Hospital This birth injury claim, in which the minor Plaintiff was awarded very substantial damages, resulted in the first Judgment in this Jurisdiction on the issue of the calculation of damages for future accommodation for a catastrophically injured Plaintiff. The High Court Judgment was appealed by the Defendants to the Supreme Court, which handed down its Judgment on 13th July 2016 dismissing the Defendants Appeal.
Augustus Cullen Law secures €2.4m interim payment for 7 year old Girl with Cerebral Palsy Read more.
Augustus Cullen Law secures €11.6m payment for 14 year old Portlaoise Girl In this case for a catastrophically injured young girl, Joice secured a total lump sum payment of €11.6m with a likely further uplift of additional damages of approximately €2.9m on the basis of the Court of Appeal’s Judgment in the case of Gill Russell (a minor) suing by his mother and next friend Karen Russell –v- Health Service Executive. Read more.
Augustus Cullen Law secures €650,000 settlement for 7 year old Galway Boy This case involved a severe brachial plexus injury to the Plaintiff’s anterior shoulder. The case was very unusual on its facts and involved the relatively recent defence of maternal propulsive forces as being the cause of the child’s injury. Read more.
Augustus Cullen Law secures €2.15m lump sum settlement for 7 year old Dublin Boy Joice acted on behalf of Calum Taaffe in an unusual and complex birth injury claim where the Plaintiff’s condition was not typical for the alleged hypoxic ischaemic injury. The Plaintiff was also diagnosed as being on the Autistic Spectrum. Read more.
Augustus Cullen Law secures €1.9m lump sum settlement for 8 year old boy with developmental delay & Autistic Spectrum Disorder Read more.
Membership of Organisations
Member of Dublin Solicitors Bar Association
Member of the Wicklow Solicitors Bar Association
Secretary of the Medical Injuries Alliance
Member of Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA)
Partner and Head of Medical Negligence Group
His reputation for fearlessly advancing his cases is well known and well founded.
A pre Eminent figure in plaintiff medical negligence offering clients a huge background of experience in handling complex and challenging medical claims.
He has become the foremost practitioner of his generation in this difficult and complex branch of the law.
Over the past 35 years he has specialised in the area of medical negligence and has been involved in many hundreds of medical negligence actions including many of the leading Irish medical negligence cases including the leading landmark case of Dunne v. National Maternity Hospital (where he acted for the Plaintiff). He has lectured extensively and has written numerous articles and book chapters. In addition, he has recently published a book on medical negligence law. He has successfully concluded many complex cases including approximately 90 birth injury, cerebral palsy and other catastrophic injury claims with multi-million pound/Euro awards for various infants and their families.
Cases Of Note in Past Ten Years:
Fitzpatrick -v- The National Maternity Hospital: In the year 2008 he was involved in the lengthiest ever birth injury cerebral palsy action with the Trial lasting 55 days, which was ultimately successful with an award of €4.5 million in favour of the infant Plaintiff
Myers -v- St. James’ Hospital: In 2009, Michael obtained one of the highest ever awards for personal injuries with an award of €6.5 million being made in the case of Myers –v- St. James’ Hospital for a catastrophically injured 50 year old woman who suffered her injuries due to an undiagnosed subarachnoid haemorrhage
In 2010-2011: He was involved in the successful trial and settlement of 6 cerebral palsy actions, a case for a catastrophically brain damaged woman arising from a ruptured aneurism and numerous other complex clinical negligence cases such as delay in diagnosis of cancer, poorly performed/delayed colorectal surgery, delay and failure to diagnose third degree tear and vaginal fistula, failure to treat Crohn’s Disease and poorly performed cosmetic surgery.
In 2012 Cian Brady –v- Rotunda Hospital: The Plaintiff sued for the negligent neonatal management of her baby who developed symptomatic hypoglycaemia. After 14 days at Trial the action settled, for €5.5 million plus costs
Jade Keane –v- HSE, National Maternity Hospital and Others. The Plaintiff suffered serious brain damage, consequent upon a 14 week delay in the diagnosis of developing neonatal hydrocephalus. Serial head measurements, showing abnormal head growth were not acted upon by various healthcare professionals. In 2012, after a 16 day trial liability to compensate the Plaintiff was admitted and the Plaintiff’s action settled for a sum of €4,750,000.
In 2013 Eoin Dunne -v- The Coombe Hospital A 10 year old boy who was deprived of oxygen following birth as a consequence of a negligent delay in the arrival of the paediatric staff to perform resuscitation. Liability was strongly disputed. Ultimately, Judgment was given in favour of the Plaintiff. Subsequently, interim damages were agreed to compensate the Plaintiff for a two year period of €2.9 million plus costs. In 2015 the case came back before the Courts for further assessment of damages with a further €11.4 million in damages awarded.
In 2014 Michael was involved in approximately 20 other catastrophic injury cases which settled with multi-million Euro interim awards of damages made and cases adjourned in anticipation of the enactment of Government legislation to permit Periodic Payment Orders.
In 2015, Michael was heavily involved in the prosecution of multiple actions suing both the State and the drug manufacturer in respect of children and adults suffering the effects of narcolepsy following the administration of the defective vaccine “Pandemrix”.
In 2016 Michael published a legal textbook entitled “A Practitioner’s Guide to Medical Negligence Litigation” which has been widely acclaimed. In April he concluded a trial for a child who suffered severe neurological and physical injuries as a consequence of delay in treating meningitis resulting in a record award of interim damages for a 3 year care package of 6.7 million euro. He has also achieved final settlement of lump sum damages for an eleven year old child with cerebral palsy of 11.4 million euro (with a likely further uplift of additional damages of at least 4m more to follow). In May he brought to trial and achieved a further award for a 16 year girl with CP an award of 7m. He continues his work for injured patients on a myriad of other serious medical negligence cases and continues to manage his specialist team of dedicated lawyers.
Membership of Organisations
Former Council Member of the Law Society of Ireland
Member of the Litigation Committee of the Law Society of Ireland
Member of Wicklow and Dublin Solicitors Bar Associations
Chairman of the Medical Injuries Alliance
Lecturer in Medical Negligence at the Law Society of Ireland and UCD School of Medicine
Member of Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA)
Member of the President of the High Court’s working party on periodic payments and medical negligence reform.
Acquired Brain Injury Claims
In the context of medical negligence litigation, acquired brain injuries refer to brain injuries which occur, but which could have been prevented or at least significantly reduced if competent medical care had been provided.
The area of medicine which deals with conditions and diseases of the brain and spinal cord is called Neurology and this encompasses a wide variety of conditions including subarachnoid haemorrhage, meningitis, the common stroke and cerebral abscess. Indeed, a neurological injury can be caused due to a failure to deal with an underlying medical condition e.g. undiagnosed and untreated hypertension and renal failure causing hypertensive encephalopathy, seizures and ultimately brain damage.
While it may not be possible to prevent some of these conditions from arising in the first instance, in many cases, competent diagnosis and treatment can lead to a much better outcome. A failure to provide adequate medical care can have catastrophic consequences for the person who suffers the brain injury. We have recently settled cases where adults acquired catastrophic brain injuries due to medical negligence. In one instance this was due to an undiagnosed and untreated cerebral abscess which ruptured into the ventricles, causing very severe brain damage so that the patient requires lifelong care. In another case, in which we obtained one of the highest awards in this Jurisdiction, the patient acquired severe brain damage as a result of an undiagnosed subarachnoid haemorrhage.
Furthermore, treatment for a neurological problem can itself be negligent. Operations can be negligently performed by Neurosurgeons resulting in damage which could otherwise have been avoided. It is also the case that the wrong procedure might be carried out or the standard of post-operative care following such a complicated procedure may be inadequate.
Infants may also suffer a catastrophic brain injury during the antenatal, intrapartum or immediate post birth period. See Cerebral Palsy & Birth Injury Claims.