How changes in the law may affect construction sector

Employment law expert Loughlin Deegan of ByrneWallace will give an update on recent developments at the National Construction Summit

6th March, 2019
Loughlin Deegan

What's your name?

Loughlin Deegan

What position do you hold?

I am a partner in the Employment and Equality Law Department of ByrneWallace. I am also the chairperson of the Employment and Equality Committee of the Law Society of Ireland.

What are your day-to-day responsibilities?

I find solutions for employers and employees who face problems relating to employment law, equality law or industrial relations law. That work varies from advising employers about how to achieve legal compliance in a way that is practical for their business, to advising during industrial disputes and representing parties in litigation.

What is your professional background?

Prior to qualification as a solicitor (in 2001) I trained in industrial relations with Ibec. I spent a total of eight years working as a solicitor in Ibec, latterly as Acting Head of Employment Law. I spent five years working as Special Adviser to the then Attorney General (Rory Brady). I have worked in ByrneWallace, a top-tier employment law practice, since 2014.

Tell me about yourself away from work?

I am a keen poker player. My idea of a relaxing day off is to spend ten hours at a card table!

You are speaking at the 2019 CIF Construction Management Summit. What are you speaking about?

I will be briefing the conference on recent and upcoming developments in employment law. Some aspects will be specific to the construction sector, such as potential developments in respect of the sectoral employment order. Other aspects will assess how recent and upcoming changes to the law in general might have a specific impact on the construction sector - notably proposed changes to the law distinguishing employees from contractors.

What challenges do you see for leaders in the construction sector?

There is a clear mismatch between what policy-makers expect the construction sector to do – to deliver homes, facilities and workplaces for a growing population in a growing economy – and the policy framework within which the construction sector is obliged to operate. I see that mismatch in my own field, employment law, but the challenges are even greater in other areas, such as the regulatory framework around planning and construction finance.

Where would you like to see the industry in 10 years’ time?

To be operating within a legal and policy framework that is aligned to the outputs that the country expects the sector to deliver.

Loughlin Deegan is speaking at the Construction Management Summit on March 29th in Croke Park. See www.constructionsummit.ie for full details

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