Woman settles claim against Dublin City Council over alleged unfit social housing

Woman Settles Claim Against Dublin City Council Over Alleged Unfit Social Housing
A doctor said damp and mould in the flat had exacerbated Claire McGarry's medical difficulties
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Ray Managh

A woman who had to visit her GP on dozens of occasions because of alleged unfit local authority accommodation has settled a €60,000 personal injuries claim against Dublin City Council.

Claire McGarry’s doctor Sean Gilroy was quoted in her case, which settled for undisclosed damages in the Circuit Civil Court, as reporting that damp and mould in her mother’s flat at Leo Fitzgerald House, Dublin 2, had exacerbated her medical difficulties.


Ms McGarry (26) claimed that over the last 12 years she had a high visitation rate with Dr Gilroy suffering stress, trauma, pain, discomfort, anxiety and loss of enjoyment of life and missing many days from school and work owing to illness.

Many of her visits to the GP were related to sore throats and respiratory problems for which she needed antibiotic treatments.

She claimed to be using an inhaler after a diagnosis of asthma, together with a nasal spray and anti-allergy tablets.

She alleged her symptoms continued as long as she remained exposed to the conditions in her mother’s flat at 20 Leo Fitzgerald House, which she claimed was unfit for human habitation.


Ms McGarry’s mother, Mary Mullen, brought a claim against Dublin City Council over conditions in her accommodation, which she alleged were a danger to health due to defective and inadequate structural repair and lack of insulation and ventilation systems.

She claimed there had been excessive internal condensation and mould growth in her apartment.

Both women had brought their claims through their solicitor, Deborah Crowley of Ferry’s Solicitors. Following out-of-court talks both settled their claims for undisclosed financial agreements.

Ms Mullen had sought an order from Judge Jennifer O’Brien for relocation or a scheme of all necessary repairs and alterations to render her home fit for human habitation.

Barrister Mark J Byrne, who appeared with Ferry's Solicitors, told Judge O’Brien that following settlement talks the claims by both mother and daughter could be struck out with orders for their legal costs.

Dublin City Council, in a defence and counter-claim against the mother, Ms Mullen, had sought an order for payment of €326.48 rent arrears and €60,000 damages against her for breach of contract and covenant.

The court was not told if this element of the counter-claim featured in the settlement between the parties.

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