Brian O’Donnell given leeway on costs liability

Judge accepts Gorse Hill eviction is reason to delay hearing on bankruptcy costs

Retired solicitor Brian O'Donnell has been given more time to prepare his challenge to the refusal to overturn his Irish bankruptcy. The decision came after he said he was busy dealing with his impending eviction tomorrow from his former family home.

Mr O’Donnell and his wife, Dr Mary Patricia O’Donnell, must be out of Gorse Hill, Killiney, Dublin, by tomorrow unless the Supreme Court agrees to allow them to bring another appeal against a finding that they are trespassing.

The Court of Appeal gave Mr O’Donnell until tomorrow to vacate, but he wants the Supreme Court to hear another appeal against that decision on a legal point which he contends is of exceptional public importance.

Mr O’Donnell was back in the High Court before Ms Justice Caroline Costello yesterday to deal with liability for costs of his failed bid to have the 2013 bankruptcy orders concerning himself and his wife overturned.

Search warrant

His son Blake, also a solicitor, was also in court to deal with applications concerning court-appointed bankruptcy official Chris Lehane’s previous decision to get a search warrant for Gorse Hill, while the O’Donnell children were still living there, so as to examine its contents.

Ms Justice Costello said she would adjourn submissions concerning liability for costs of the bankruptcy annulment proceedings to May 14th. The judge said she had previously set Thursday next to deal with that issue, but was prepared to give Mr O’Donnell “a bit of leeway” after he asked for the matter to be put back to May 28th for practical reasons “to do with the eviction”.

Ms Justice Costello said she was not prepared to give him that long, but would adjourn the costs matters to May 14th. The judge told Blake O’Donnell that she would deal with issues related to the search warrant on May 19th. Those issues include an application by Mr Lehane for permission to cross-examine the O’Donnell children about the contents of the house when they were living there.

Separately, Mr Justice Brian McGovern has adjourned until next month Bank of Ireland’s case for damages over its trespass proceedings against Mr O’Donnell and his wife.