Family Law – Will Covid-19 affect your maintenance rights?

Posted by Admin
on March 24, 2020

I am writing this blog in response to a number of queries received by the office recently. I hope the below Q & A will help answer your questions. If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact Martina Murphy on 061-303311 or email

Q. My children’s father has reduced the amount of maintenance he has paying me. He has been laid off temporarily and says he has bills to pay. What can I do – my children and I depend on that weekly sum?

Eventhough we are in unusual times, I would suggest that the last thing that should be cut is the maintenance payment. Courts generally treat maintenance as a priority which must be paid above all other financial commitments. The government has introduced financial measures to assist people who have been laid off and every effort should be made by your ex to pay the maintenance. It may be acceptable for the maintenance to be reduced marginally but it cannot be unilaterally stopped. Just because there is a covid crisis does not mean that children don’t need to be provided for.

Unfortunately the courts are not sitting at the moment save in exceptional circumstances and therefore it is not possible currently to bring your case to the attention of the courts. What we can do however is write to your children’s father advising him of his obligations and lodge an application with the court in regard to maintenance which will be heard as soon as the courts resume.

If the maintenance is stopped or reduced unnecessarily will the courts backdate it?

Yes they will.

Does it matter if I have an Order for maintenance or just an agreement for maintenance?

Yes and no. It is preferable if there is a court order in place as the maintenance amount has been adjudicated by the Judge to be fair. If however you and your ex never went to court and had agreed a figure between you and he/she has paying this consistently and you were relying on it then the Judge would deem this to be setting a precedent. This means the Judge would likely suggest that this figure continues to be paid.

What happens if the maintenance stops entirely? What can I do – I do not work so do not qualify for the €350 payment.

Please contact your local community welfare officer who maybe able to give you an emergency lump sum or other assistance.

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Newsletter – Issue 1, Spring 2018

Posted by Admin
on March 24, 2018

2018 is upon us and with it comes the promise of growth and change. As part of our expansion we are excited to launch Martina Murphy Solicitors Quarterly Newsletter (PDF | HTML).

We have specifically designed it to provide clients with up to date practical legal information pertaining to their day to day lives. Whether you are an individual or a small business, we hope there will be something useful for you to peruse.

If you find it useful and think it may benefit someone else you know please share it using the forward link below. If you would like us to address any particular area of law in our next Newsletter, which will be published in Q3’18, please do let us know.

Best wishes,
Martina Murphy Solicitors

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Company -v- Sole Trader

Posted by Admin
on June 13, 2011

The first question any person thinking of setting up a new business should ask is whether they will set it up as a sole trader or whether they will form a limited liability company to run the business on their behalf.

There are key advantages and disadvantages to each and it is worth taking the time deciding
which kind of business entity you wish to set up at the outset.

In this article I will deal with the legal points involved but anyone setting up a business and deciding which route to take should also seek the advice of their accountant.
Read more…Company -v- Sole Trader

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The Dawning of a New Era in Family Law

Posted by Admin
on June 13, 2011

One could say that the signing into law of the Civil Partnership Act, 2010 marks the end of an era in Ireland where only married couples of the opposite sex were afforded rights and duties under our legislation.

The signing into law of the Civil Partnership Act 2010 marks a milestone in family law for this country, expanding rights and duties to couples of the same sex and also offering a redress scheme to those persons who are in a co-habiting arrangement.
Read more…The Dawning of a New Era in Family Law

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