Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Ceisteanna (436)

Denis Naughten

Ceist:

436. Deputy Denis Naughten asked the Minister for Defence if he will set out in tabular form, by reference to each named firm, the amount paid out in respect of legal fees during 2013 by his Department to law firms in or outside the State for services rendered to it; if he will provide in a similar format the amount paid out in respect of legal fees during 2013 by State bodies, including commercial or non-commercial and regulatory bodies established by or under his Department, to law firms in or outside the State for services rendered to them; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11868/14]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Defence)

The Chief State Solicitor's Office, Attorney General's Office and the State Claims Agency deal with all legal matters on behalf of the Department. As such it would seldom arise that the Department procures the services of external law firms. The following table lists the amounts paid to law firms rendering services to it in 2013:

Law firm

Amount paid in 2013

Baynes & Co.

€30,507.69

Hayden & Co.

€ 3,342.44

M.E. Hanahoe Solicitors

€ 1,211.28

Brian A Rennick & Co.

€16,969.39

B.P. McCormack & Sons

€ 1,105.00

Total

€53,135.80

There were no payments made in respect of legal fees during 2013 by any State bodies established by or under my Department to law firms in or outside the State for services rendered.

The main requirement for legal services in my Department is in the context of litigation, usually in the form of administrative law and personal injury proceedings. The Chief State Solicitor's Office (CSSO) and the State Claims Agency (SCA) manage and provide legal representation in relation to all cases taken against the Minister for Defence. The Chief State Solicitor's Office is responsible for the costs of the State's legal teams in cases that it manages on behalf of the Department. External legal costs incurred by the State Claims Agency arising from the defence of any claims managed by the Agency for the Department are refunded to the Agency by the Department. In addition, the Department may pay plaintiff's legal costs as part of awards and settlements.

The following table sets out the total amounts paid by my Department to the CSSO and SCA in 2013 which includes legal fees, compensation, and miscellaneous costs associated with litigation:

2013

Amount Paid - €

CSSO

629,711

SCA

3,168,300

Total €

3,798,011