Clonmel solicitor Donald Binchy is the new President of the Law Society of Ireland Mr Binchy (age 48) is a partner at the law firm Binchy Solicitors, founded by his grandfather James Binchy in 1918. He will serve a one-year term as president of the 12,000-strong solicitors’ profession until November 2012.
He took office at a meeting of the Law Society Council at which the main business item was the Legal Services Regulation Bill 2011. He expressed himself “deeply concerned” about the bill, which he expects to dominate his presidential year.
Mr Binchy said: “The bill threatens every citizen’s right to receive advice from a legal profession that is free of improper interference and the direct control of Government. The bill proposes a model of regulation of the profession that is unknown in any free democratic society.
“The Law Society will be urging Justice Minister Alan Shatter to introduce amendments to guarantee the proper separation of powers between the judicial and executive branches of Government by ensuring the maintenance, in the public interest, of an independent legal profession as a necessary support to the independence of the judiciary.”
Mr Binchy is a native of Clonmeland is the third of four children born to Don and Joan Binchy (both deceased). Married to Claire, they have three children. He was educated in Ss Peter and Paul’s Primary School, Clonmel, and Clongowes Wood College, Co Kildare. He graduated with a BCL law degree from University College Dublin.
Apprenticed to his father Don (who served as Law Society President from 1990/91), he qualified as a solicitor at Blackhall Place, Dublin, in 1987. He spent two years, post qualification, engaged in IFSC-related work for the then law firm of Cawley, Sheerin, Wynne in Dublin.
He became a member of the Council of the Law Society of Ireland in 1994. He has served on many of the Society’s most senior committees, including the Business Law Committee, the Education Committee and the Education Policy Review Group, which renovated the education policy and methodology of the education of solicitors.
In addition, he has served on the Regulation of Practice Committee, the Complaints and Client Relations Committee, the Finance Committee and the Professional Indemnity Insurance Committee.