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ISME’s misconduct complaints to the Law Society, Medical Council and Bar Council

PRESS RELEASE:

16/12/2019

  • The Law Society has no interest in investigating fraudulent claim submission by solicitors
  • The Medical Council finds no reason to take further action against doctor who generated multiple reports for a fraudster claimant
  • ISME question if  the LSRA and the Medical Practitioners Act 2007 need to be amended to protects citizens 

Following the explicitly critical remarks made by Mr Justice Twomey in his dismissal of a fraudulent claim in O’Connell-v-Martin in the High Court last May, ISME asked the Law Society, the Medical Council and the Bar Council to investigate the solicitor, doctor and barrister singled out by the judge.

While the Bar Council has yet to complete its deliberations into our complaint:

  • The Law Society has advised ISME that the opinions expressed by Justice Twomey ‘fall far short of the standard required to justify intervention by the Law Society.’
  • The Medical Council has advised ISME of its decision that ‘that there was not sufficient cause to warrant further action being taken in relation to [ISME’s complaint].’

It is very difficult for us to comprehend what standard of behaviour by lawyers or doctors would cross the threshold for investigation of professional misconduct. This suggests to us that there is a persistent cultural acceptance of fraud facilitation within these professions.

In view of the fact that the definition of professional misconduct in the Legal Services Regulatory Act (LSRA) is essentially the same as that set out in the Solicitors Act 1954, ISME will now ask the Minister for Justice and the Chair of the Joint Committee on Justice and Equality whether the LSRA needs to be amended to protect citizens against the facilitation of fraudulent claims by solicitors and barristers.

And in view of the fact that the Medical Council did not consider the actions of the doctor who produced a number of medical reports for a fraudulent claimant warranted further action by them, ISME will ask the Minster for Health and the Chair of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health if the Medical Practitioners Act 2007 adequately protects citizens against the production of medical reports for fraudulent plaintiffs by medical professionals.

ENDS
Notes:

  • ISME should be referred to as the Irish SME Association

For further information, please contact ISME offices T: 01 6622755 E: marketing@isme.ie