Speakers and organisers of the Law Society Finuas Network General Practice Update 2018, held at the Hotel Kilkenny
More than 150 Carlow, Kilkenny Wexford and Waterford solicitors attended a major legal conference in the Hotel Kilkenny, recently.
Organised by the Law Society Finuas Skillnet in partnership with Carlow Bar Association, Kilkenny Bar Association, Wexford Bar Association and Waterford Law Society the event is an opportunity for local solicitors to stay up to date on essential areas of law such as General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR), employment, probate law and more.
Solicitor Yvonne Blanchfield of Owen O'Mahony & Co. Solicitors, Kilkenny, is the President of the Kilkenny Bar Association. She says the annual legal conference is an opportunity for local solicitors to reflect on the current legal landscape and upcoming developments.
“As 2018 draws to a close, this conference is an opportunity for solicitors in the region to reflect on the legal system’s changes over the last few months and also look ahead to what next year will bring.”
“The legal landscape is continuously evolving. This year, we have had huge changes within the law, particularly in relation to GDPR,” says Ms Blanchfield.
“We were lucky to welcome GDPR expert, Elizabeth Fitzgerald of Principal Fitzgerald Tech Law, Dublin, who addressed the conference to discuss the essentials for each solicitor,” says Ms Blanchfield.
“The data protection changes introduced earlier this year impact every European citizen. It is important that every business, organisation, sports and volunteer group – both big and small – stay compliant.”
“GDPR is about much more than storing personal data safely. It is also important anyone facing a data request know how to handle it, especially within the timeframe of 30 days.”
“Personal data is any information that can identify an individual person. This can include, but is not limited to, a name, postal address, image or anything relating to the identity of a person.”
“If you need information on reviewing your GDPR policy, or handling an access request, talk to your solicitor at the earliest opportunity. Businesses not compliant with the new rules may face severe penalties, including fines of up to €20 million or four per cent of turnover.”
“Your local solicitor is an expert adviser and can advise your business, organisation or community group, whether it is big or small, on any issue you may have.”
Probate and tax
The conference also updated local solicitors on probate laws and handling estates.
“Solicitors are key figures in the community, and are there to offer advice to members of their community during all stages of life. From buying a house or business advice, to family law and estate planning, your solicitor is there for you,” says Ms Blanchfield.
“Solicitors can also provide information on a number of probate issues including challenging wills, administrating estates and inheritance tax. In Budget 2019, the government increased inheritance tax for children by €10,000 to €320,000.”
“The administration of estates can often be a sensitive time. To avoid difficulties down the line, consult with your solicitor to see what tax and legal obligations you are liable for after an estate has been administered.”
“If you need probate advice, talk to your solicitor at the earliest opportunity.”