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IrishLaw FAQ

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To join the IrishLaw list (Irish and Northern Irish law), send the following message to listserv@listserv.heanet.ie :
subscribe irishlaw [Your full name]

e.g. subscribe irishlaw Anne Hogan

(Note: For the above command, and for all commands sent to the listserv, leave the subject line blank and type the command in the body of the message text).

You can also join or leave the IrishLaw list through a web form at

The Irish Law list is for discussion of all topics relating to the law of Ireland and/or Northern Ireland. In future, the list may be subdivided into separate areas. If you are interested in other legal topics or in other matters relating to Ireland, perhaps you would also like to subscribe to one of the other groups listed near the end of this file.
At present, this list is open to anybody interested in Irish law. However, we would be grateful if, when you join the list, you would send a short message to the list (irishlaw@listserv.heanet.ie) introducing yourself to the other list members. Please state your name and location in the Subject Line of the introductory message, e.g.
"Subject: Introduction - Anne Hogan, Auckland, NZ"

To a large extent, a list can be as interesting or as useful as the participants want it to be. Its structure is also largely up to its participants. The current structure of the list is described below, but if you disagree with these guidelines you can always request that they be changed in future.

Technical Queries:

If you have technical queries about the listserv program and how to operate it, please do not post a message to all the members of the list. It is usually better to contact Darius Whelan directly. To do this, send mail to either:

For example, if you are new to the Internet, or new to listserv lists, and you have seen a message on the IrishLaw list and you want to contact the sender directly (without copying your message to all 350 members of the list) but are not sure how to do this, just contact Darius Whelan.

There are also three other list-owners, Antóin Ó Lachtnáin (antoin@eire.com), Ferdinand von Prondzynksi (F.von-Prondzynski@dcu.ie) and Mary Donnelly (m.donnelly@ucc.ie). If you post a message to irishlaw-REQUEST@listserv.heanet.ie, this message reaches all four list owners.


If you have subscribed to the list as an unconcealed subscriber (the standard method), there is a danger that your e-mail address may become available for public distribution and may be put on WorldWideWeb servers. If you would prefer to be absolutely sure that your address will be private, just issue a "SET IRISHLAW CONCEAL" command to listserv@listserv.heanet.ie.
We try to ensure that your address is not widely available by generally preventing people from accessing the list of members.

Even if you have used the "concealed" option, your name and e-mail address will appear if you post a message to the list. If you wish to post a message anonymously, ask another member of the list (or a list-owner) to post it on your behalf.

See also our Privacy Statement at www.irishlaw.org/siteinfo/privacy.shtml

Are Irish Cases and Statutes available in Electronic Form?

A. Ireland


Irish statutes and statutory instruments are available on CD-ROM from the Government Publications Office - see http://www.opw.ie/services/gov_sup/gov_con.htm 
The statutes are also available on the Internet at two sites:
Bailii - The British and Irish Legal Information Institute -
by following the link on the Attorney General's Office site at

Case Law

Free service on a pilot basis -
Bailii - The British and Irish Legal Information Institute - http://www.bailii.org

Fee-paying services:

FirstLaw -

LEXIS - access the IRELAND library.
This library contains Irish Reports from 1950, Irish Law Reports Monthly from 1980, Irish Law Times from 1950 to 1980 and Judgments of the Court of Criminal Appeal (Frewen). It also includes selected unreported cases from July 1985.

Here are some means of obtaining further information about lexis:
(For Irish and Northern Irish residents, try
See also the contact details for ITELIS, agents for Lexis-Nexis in Ireland and Northern Ireland, at the
Irish Legal Publishers page .)
Listserv Discussion:
Send the following message to listserv@lawlib.wuacc.edu:
subscribe lexisuser-l Yourfirstname Yoursurname

World Wide Web:
Telnet (only for customers):

B. Northern Ireland

Some UK statutes are available on the web at
and some Statutory Instruments at

For UK case law, follow the links at
http://libservb.ukc.ac.uk/library/netinfo/intnsubg/lawlinks.htm#case (Sarah Carter, University of Kent at Canterbury)

LEXIS has cases from the Northern Ireland Law Reports from 1945 onwards, and unreported cases dating from 1984. They are in the NILAW library.

A pilot service offering free access to Northern Ireland legislation and statutory instruments is at

Bailii - The British and Irish Legal Information Institute - http://www.bailii.org

The attached correspondence may also be of assistance to those seeking Northern Ireland statutory material:

Sender:       "EURO-LEX (All EUROpean Legal Information EXchange List)"
Poster:       Renate Weidinger 
Subject:      Northern Ireland Statutory Instruments

   We need a couple of Statutory Instruments from Northern Ireland and
   according to references made in CELEX. For instance and cited as:

       The genetically modified organisms (deliberate release),
       Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1994 of 12/04/1994,
       Statutory Instruments No 144 of 1994.

   Until last week I would have been convinced, that Halsbury's
   Statutory Instruments would cover all this; now we realized that
   it covers England and Wales only.

   Therefore some questions to our British and Irish colleagues:

   - What is the printed collection for Northern Ireland SI called
     (in order to direct an ILL request properly)?
     Is 'The Statutory Rules of Northern Ireland' the correct title?
   - Which would be the printed collection for Scotland?
   - Does the HMSO 'Statutory Instruments Database' on CD-ROM now cover
     the full range of Northern Ireland SI? (We own an older edition
     of SI on CD-ROM and its manual states: 'Northern Ireland Orders
     are not included on the initial version of SI-CD but will be added
     in a future update.')
   - Is there an online access to HMSO Statutory Instruments Database,
     either via Internet or via X.25 network. What are the conditions
     of use?

   Thanks in advance for any reply.     R.W.
: Renate Weidinger                 Phone: +49 7531 882845                  :
: University of Konstanz           Fax:   +49 7531 883082                  :
: Library                          Email: renate.weidinger@uni-konstanz.de :
---------------------- Information from the mail header
Sender:       "EURO-LEX (All EUROpean Legal Information EXchange List)"
Poster:       Renate Weidinger 
Subject:      Northern Ireland Statutory Instruments

   The message below had not been distributed properly; so may I forward
   it to the list together with some additional notes.   R.W.

----------------------------Original message----------------------------
The enclosed mail file has been identified as a delivery error for list
EURO-LEX because it was sent to the reserved 'owner-euro-lex' mailbox.

------------------------------ Message in error

Date: Tue, 28 Feb 95 13:16 GMT
From; gmorgan@cix.compulink.co.uk (gareth morgan)
Subject: Northern Ireland SIs
To; owner-euro-lex@VM.GMD.DE

I've checked on the current SI CD-Rom and NI SIs are still
not there.  The NI Order on Genetically Modified Organisms
1992 is there but that is the equivalent of the Act.

I strongly suspect that, if it is like areas I do know
about, the NI regs will be identical in function to the
British SIs with only the necessary constitutional changes.

 + But not having the same numbering: SI 144 of 1944 of the British SIs
 + has nothing to do with 'Genetically modified organisms', but deals with
 + Customs and Excise Matters (Designation of a 'Free Zone').  R.W.

I believe that on-line access to SIs is available on Lexis
but I don't know whether this includes NI, or indeed
whether it is full text of the entire series.

 + Doesn't the 'English Library' in Lexis represent Butterworths material?
 + In that case, it possibly will be equivalent to Halsbury's.  R.W.

GarethM @ Ferret Information Systems.

Sending a message to all recipients of the IrishLaw list:

To send a message to all the people currently subscribed to the list, send mail to irishlaw@listserv.heanet.ie. This is called "sending mail to the list", because you send mail to a single address and LISTSERV makes copies for all the people who have subscribed. The address (IRISHLAW ...) is also called the "list address". Please don't send commands to the address, as it will be distributed to all the people who have subscribed. Instead, please send all commands to the LISTSERV address, listserv@listserv.heanet.ie. The LISTSERV address is like a FAX number and the list address is like a normal phone line. If repeated mistakes are made in dialling a number, recipients may get annoyed and it's the same with the two e-mail addresses.

In February 1997, IrishLaw changed to become a moderated list. This means that if you send a message to the list, it will first be sent to the moderators before it can be forwarded to the list. (The address for posting messages remains the same - irishlaw@listserv.heanet.ie).

The moderators will adopt the following guidelines in approving posts to the list:

Sometimes, we will suggest to the member that if he/she wishes to make a number of points on a particular discussion, the points should be consolidated into one message rather than spread over a number of separate messages.

The moderators are under no duty to give reasons for any rejection of a message.

We reserve the right to amend these guidelines in the future if new problems arise which have not been covered above.

We would ask members to bear in mind that there are general guidelines concerning the style of Internet discussion groups which are widely available. For example, try


As our LISTSERV software is provided by the Higher Education Authority (HEA), members must abide by

Members are reminded that there are other lists concerning Irish affairs listed at the end of this message.

Contributions sent to this list are automatically archived. You should be aware that anybody can read the archives, including people who have never subscribed to the list. You can obtain a list of the available archive files by sending an "INDEX IRISHLAW" command to listserv@listserv.heanet.ie. You can then order these files with a "GET IRISHLAW LOGxxxx" command (e.g. get irishlaw log0104 for 2001, month 04 - April), or using LISTSERV's database search facilities. Send an "INFO DATABASE" command for more information on the latter.

Searchable list archives are also available on the web at


When replying to a message posted to the list, please keep in mind that by using the "reply" command, your message will go to the entire list, not solely to the original author.
Please also note that if you use the "Reply" function, you must be careful to delete all references to "IrishLaw" from the header of the copy of the message to which you are replying.
For example, Anne Hogan posts a message to IrishLaw concerning Adoption. John Dunne wishes to reply to this message and wishes his reply to go to all members of IrishLaw. He chooses the "reply" function in his mail program. Even before he begins to write his reply, a copy of Anne Hogan's message will automatically appear as part of his message. John must look at the header of this copy of Anne's message and delete all lines referring to IrishLaw. However, he can leave in any line saying "From: Anne Hogan (xxx@yyy.zzz)". The reason for this is that the listserv program automatically rejects messages which contain "From IrishLaw" or "Reply-to IrishLaw" in the text. This is to avoid Mail-Loops occurring, where an error message might be sent back and forth many times.
If all of this sounds complicated, the solution is to try sending the message. Listserv will tell you if it has rejected the message, and you can then contact Darius Whelan ( d.whelan@ucc.ie) to try and sort the matter out.
When posting messages, always keep the subject line in mind. Many users delete messages without reading them based on the subject line.

Please type your name and e-mail address at the bottom of each message as some recipients will be using mail programs which do not have details of addresses in the headers.

To send private mail, you have to compose a new message; if you would like to include part of a message distributed through the list into a private mail message, you may "forward" the message to another recipient.

You can leave the list at any time by sending an "UNSUBSCRIBE IRISHLAW" command to listserv@listserv.heanet.ie. This command must NOT be sent to the list address (IRISHLAW...) but to the LISTSERV address (listserv@listserv.heanet.ie ).

If you find that it is difficult to keep up with all IrishLaw messages, you can change to the "Digest" option. This means that if ten messages are posted in a particular day, they will automatically be placed into one large message for you. To set irishlaw to digest option, send the following message to listserv@listserv.heanet.ie :

set irishlaw digest

If at any time you wish to check the current status of your subscription to IrishLaw, send the following message to listserv@listserv.heanet.ie :
query irishlaw

My name is Darius Whelan of University College Cork Law Department and I am the administrator of this list at present. I tried to consult as many people as possible about the structure of the list before setting it up. Initially, UCD Computing Services kindly agreed to provide the technical facilities for the list. Later the list transferred to the Higher Education Authority. However, please do not send any queries or comments to UCD or the HEA but instead contact me directly ( d.whelan@ucc.ie). Responsibility for any future problems or controversies will obviously rest with me rather than with anybody in UCD or the HEA, but see the disclaimer at www.irishlaw.org/siteinfo/disclaim.shtml

Other IrishLaw Internet Resources:

If you have access to World Wide Web, the IrishLaw site is available at

Another useful legal group if you are new to the Internet:

European Legal Information Exchange - euro-lex

listserv@listserv.gmd.de -
subscribe euro-lex YourFirstName YourSecondName

Archives at www.listserv.gmd.de/archives/euro-lex.html  

Extracts from Disclaimer:

If a message is forwarded to the list by a moderator, that does not indicate that the moderator approves of the message content or is in any way responsible for that content.

IrishLaw members who post messages to the list are not legally responsible for the accuracy of the information contained in those messages. Professional legal advice should be sought before any action should be taken based on information contained in an IrishLaw message.

Neither the moderators, the members, their employers, the Higher Education Authority, HEAnet, any educational institution, any public or private body, any Internet Service Provider nor any other corporation, body, association, person or persons are responsible in any way for any injury, loss or damage, whether due to negligence or otherwise, resulting from the IrishLaw web site, the IrishLaw mailing list, any archives of IrishLaw messages, any messages written by members or non-members of the IrishLaw list or any related activities.

Other e-mail lists concerning Irish Law:

  • Irish Law Updates
  • Brehon Aid Discussion
    Very high quality discussion of Brehon law.
  • Companies Registration Office Update
  • Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment Press Releases List
    Fill in the form at www.entemp.ie/cont1.htm and ask to receive all press releases by e-mail.
  • Fergus O’Rourke has also started some e-mail lists - see http://homepage.eircom.net/~ugf/
  • Another group concerning Irish matters:


    Send email to listproc@mcfeeley.cc.utexas.edu
    Nothing in your subject line
    subscribe IRL-Discussion YourFirstName YourSecondName

    If you have access to the WorldWideWeb, you can easily obtain much more detailed lists of mailing groups concerning law or Ireland.

    More information on LISTSERV commands can be found in the LISTSERV reference card, which you can retrieve by sending an "INFO REFCARD" command to listserv@listserv.heanet.ie.


    IRISHLAW Irish and Northern Irish Law
    LISTSERV address (for all automated commands): listserv@listserv.heanet.ie
    To post messages to all recipients of the list:
    IrishLaw World Wide Web Site:


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