Further expansion for Kennedys in Dublin with healthcare partner hire

We are pleased to announce that we have hired healthcare specialist, Joanne O’Sullivan, as a partner in our Dublin office. Joanne joins us from the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, where she was deputy head of legal services.

In addition to her NHS work, Joanne also has extensive experience working for the world’s largest healthcare insurers in inquests, personal injury claims, regulatory cases and clinical negligence claims, including complex brain injury cases. She trained and qualified at Matheson in Dublin in 2008 and is qualified to practice in Ireland and England & Wales. Joanne has previously worked with DWF Fishburns and Clyde & Co in London.

The appointment strengthens our 70-strong team of specialist healthcare lawyers and reinforces our growth ambitions in Dublin, giving us the opportunity to expand our international specialist healthcare practice with teams also in Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney, and shortly in USA. Ireland is currently seeking to introduce similar clinical negligence protocols to those introduced by the Woolf reforms in the UK, following the release of a 2015 government report into the rising cost of medical indemnity insurance.

Joanne says: “I am delighted to be relocating back to Dublin with a firm of Kennedys’ reputation and growth ambitions. I am looking forward to growing Kennedys’ healthcare capabilities in Ireland. It’s a particularly important time for Irish insurers in relation to how they handle clinical negligence claims and this will be a key focus of my service to them.”

Joanne brings highly relevant experience to our growing Dublin office, reinforcing our commitment to attracting leading lawyers whenever, and wherever, clients need expertise. Joanne’s appointment complements recent investment to build our UK healthcare practice across both the private and public sector, including a number of healthcare commercial hires who advise on a broad range of commercial activities, establishing new bodies, regulation, governance and procurement.

Nick Thomas, Senior Partner at Kennedys

In November last year, we more than doubled our existing office space in Dublin as more insurers look towards the city as a possible location for their European headquarters post-Brexit in the event of losing “passporting” rights that allow UK insurers to trade in Europe without the need for locally regulated entities.

Joanne becomes the seventh lateral partner hire since the start of the year and the eighth appointment to our commercial healthcare practice in under two years.

Earlier this month we announced plans to merge with Carroll McNulty & Kull, a leading insurance firm in the US that also has a significant healthcare practice, creating a truly global insurance practice.