The Law Reform Commission comprises 5 Commissioners, the President and 4 other Commissioners (one appointed on a full-time basis). In accordance with the Law Reform Commission Act 1975, the Commissioners are appointed by the Government for a term of up to 5 years and their appointment may be renewed.
The Commissioners are supported by its staff, comprising the Director of Research, the Access to Legislation Manager and Head of Administration, together with the Deputy Director of Research, 2 Deputy Access to Legislation Managers, the Legal Information Manager, 10 legal researchers and 4 administrative staff.
Ms. Justice Mary Laffoy
Ms Justice Mary Laffoy graduated from University College Dublin with a B.A. degree in 1968. Subsequently, between 1968 and 1971 she studied law at University College Dublin and at the Honourable Society of King’s Inns in Dublin. She was called to the Bar in July 1971.
She practised as a barrister from the Michaelmas term in 1971 until her appointment to the High Court. She was admitted to the Inner Bar in the Michaelmas term of 1987.
She was appointed a judge of the High Court in April 1995. While on the High Court Bench, she was primarily involved in civil litigation, principally in the area of chancery law. She was appointed to the Supreme Court in October 2013 and retired in June 2017.
Ms Justice Laffoy chaired the Citizens’ Assembly from July 2016 to June 2018, when it published its Final Report.
In October 2018, she was appointed President of the Commission.
Full Time Commissioner
Mr Justice Maurice Collins
Mr Justice Maurice Collins is a graduate of University College Cork (B.A. (Hons)) and of the King’s Inns (Barrister-at-Law).
Mr Justice Collins was called to the Bar in 1989, commencing practice in 1990. He was made a Senior Counsel in 2003. His practice as a barrister encompassed constitutional and administrative law, EU law, competition law, commercial litigation, company law and tort law. He appeared in many significant cases in the Irish and EU courts.
He was Chair of the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting in Ireland, publisher of the Irish Reports, between 2009 and 2015.
Mr Justice Collins was appointed a judge of the Court of Appeal in November 2019.Mr Justice Collins was appointed as Commissioner in October 2020.
Dr Andrea Mulligan
Dr Andrea Mulligan is an Assistant Professor at the School of Law, Trinity College Dublin and a practising barrister. A graduate of Trinity College Dublin (LL.B and Ph.D), Harvard Law School (LL.M) and the Honorable Society of King’s Inns, she was called to the Bar in 2012.
In her academic work, Andrea lectures in Medical Law and Ethics, and Law and Bioethics, and is Director of the Clinical Legal Education Programme. Andrea’s academic expertise is in the regulation of emerging reproductive technologies and reproductive rights. She is co-author of the book Medical Law in Ireland, and has published widely in international peer-reviewed journals, tackling subjects such as cross-border surrogacy under the European Convention on Human Rights, and tortious liability for mistakes in IVF.
In her practice at the Bar of Ireland, Andrea specialises in public/regulatory law and healthcare law. Her practice has a particular focus on data protection and technology law, as well as complex clinical negligence, and health and social care litigation.
Andrea is a member of the Irish Council for Law Reporting and was appointed to the Pandemic Ethics Advisory Group – a sub-group of the National Public Health Emergency Team – in March 2020. Dr Mulligan was appointed as Commissioner in October 2020.
Ms Justice Niamh Hyland
Ms. Justice Niamh Hyland is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin, Magdalen College Oxford and the King’s Inns (Barrister-at law).
Ms. Justice Hyland worked as a referendaire at the General Court of the Court of Justice in Luxembourg and was the Jean Monnet Professor in European Law at Trinity College. She was called to the Bar in 1994 and commenced practice in 1996.
She was made a Senior Counsel in 2012. She practised in diverse areas of the law, including EU regulatory law (telecoms, aviation, energy), public procurement, competition law, constitutional law, administrative law, healthcare law and commercial law. She was a member of the Bar Council of Ireland.
Ms. Justice Hyland was appointed as a judge of the High Court in December 2019. Ms Justice Hyland was appointed as Commissioner in May 2021.