Chief Justice’s Conference on Access to Justice

1st – 2nd October 2021 | #AccesstoJustice2021

This open-access conference will be of interest to members of the public, practitioners, academics and those with an interest in legal and justice matters. Organised by the Office of the Chief Justice in conjunction with the Law Society of Ireland, FLAC Free Legal Advice Centres, The Bar of Ireland and the Legal Aid Board.


About the Event

Equality before the law is a fundamental principle in a democratic state. To achieve it, there must be access to justice. To that end, a Working Group on Access to Justice has been established by the Chief Justice which currently includes the following members:

  • The Hon. Mr. Justice Frank Clarke, Chief Justice
  • The Hon. Mr. Justice John MacMenamin, Judge of the Supreme Court
  • Mr. Joseph O’Sullivan BL, nominated by the Council of the Bar of Ireland
  • Ms. Attracta O’Regan, nominated by the Law Society of Ireland
  • Mr. Philip O’Leary, Chairperson, Legal Aid Board
  • Ms. Eilis Barry, Chief Executive, Free Legal Advice Centres

The Group recognises the concept of ‘access to justice’ is broad and multi-faceted which requires a
holistic approach and input from all key stakeholders in order to identify barriers to access to justice
and work to remove such barriers. The goal of the Group is to contribute to improving access to justice.
As access to justice encompasses so many areas and there are a number of current initiatives which
plan to achieve reform in this area, the Group wishes to host a conference to identify the strands of access to justice that will form the basis of its work.
It will also provide an opportunity for groups and individuals with unmet needs to engage in a conversation about what is needed to make improvements.

The conference will have two limbs

  1. Contextualising Access to Justice and Highlighting Existing Initiatives
  2. Workshops to identify unidentified and unmet needs a roadmap to remove them