Irish government and state agencies

Private Residential Tenancies Board -

The Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) was set up under the Residential Tenancies Act 2004. It is a state body which deals with all matters relating to private tenancies. It monitors the system of registration of private tenancies by landlords, and is also responsible for dealing with any disputes which may arise in relation to the tenancy, including disputes about rent, deposits, notice periods, eviction, etc. It provides policy advice to the Government on the private rented sector and its dispute resolution service replaces the courts in relation to the majority of landlord and tenant disputes.

The PRTB website has information available about the rights and obligations of both landlords and tenants, and it also runs an information phoneline at 0818 303037.

The Pensions Ombudsman -

The Pensions Ombudsman independently investigates and decides on complaints and disputes involving occupational pension schemes and Personal Retirement Savings Accounts (PRSAs). The current Pensions Ombudsman is Paul Kenny. You can complain to the Pensions Ombudsman if you believe you have suffered financial loss because of poor administration of a pension scheme or PRSA and if you are an actual or potential beneficiary of an occupational pension scheme or a PRSA. Without claiming to be at a financial loss, anyone eligible to complain can refer a dispute of fact or law to the Pensions Ombudsman. There is no cost to the public for this service.

Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS) -

The Money and Advice Budgeting Service (MABS) is a national free, confidential and independent service for people in debt or in danger of getting into debt. People can speak to a Money Advisor who will help them to work out a plan for dealing with their finances and, where necessary, may intervene on their behalf with creditors or financial institutions.

As of September 1st 2015, the government announced an enhanced role for MABS in providing information and assistance to people struggling with mortgage arrears, including a national network of 'Court Mentors', who will attend court with clients, and offer support and advice.

MABS also operates a helpline at 076 107 2000.

Citizens Information Board -

The Citizens Information Board is the national support agency responsible for supporting the provision of information, advice and advocacy on social services. The Citizens Information Board provides information for the general public, support for information providers, e.g. voluntary and statutory organisations, and social policy and research information.

Law Reform Commission -

The Law Reform Commission (LRC)'s main function is to keep the law under review and make recommendations for its reform. It is an independent body corporate established under the Law Reform Commission Act 1975. The LRC carries out its functions under the Act in two primary ways: pursuant to programmes of law reform which it draws up in consultation with the Attorney General and which are government-approved; and pursuant to specific requests (or "references") by the Attorney General to the LRC in relation to particular branches or matters of law.

The Financial Services Ombudsman -

The Financial Services Ombudsman is a statutory officer who deals independently with unresolved complaints from consumers about their individual dealings with all financial service providers. It is a free service to the person making the complaint. Broader issues of consumer protection are the responsibility of the Irish Financial Regulator. The current Ombudsman is Ger Deering.

Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service -

The Irish Naturalisation & Immigration Service (INIS) is an executive office of the Department of Justice and Equality and is responsible for undertaking the administrative functions of the Minister for Justice and Equality in relation to immigration, visa, international protection and citizenship matters. Visit the INIS website for information on, amongst other things: immigrating to Ireland; visa requirements and how to apply; the asylum system in Ireland and how to apply for asylum; Irish citizenship eligibility; documentation needed for coming to Ireland.

Office for Social Inclusion -

The Office for Social Inclusion (OSI) has overall responsibility for developing, co-ordinating and driving the National Action Plan Against Poverty and Social Exclusion (NAP/Inclusion). This plan incorporates the National Anti-Poverty Strategy and the social inclusion commitments contained in the Sustaining Progress agreement. The OSI monitors and evaluates the strategy and develops support functions to underpin the process. It also carries out poverty-proofing and research.

The Courts Service -

The Courts Service was established to manage the courts, support the judiciary and provide a high-quality and professional service to all users of the courts.The site features the courts' legal diaries, lists of judges and sittings, caselaw, court forms, lists of offices and maps, practice directions, rules and fees, information on jury service and the online application process for the Small Claims Court.

Competition and Consumer Protection Commission -

As a result of the Competition and Consumer Protection Act 2014, the National Consumer Agency and Competition Authority merged to become the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC), which now deals with enforcing both consumer protection and competition law. Members of the public can contact the CCPC about false or misleading claims about goods, services and prices, and it will investigate the matter. The CCPC has a corporate website, but more information about consumer rights and responsibilities, how to make a complaint, and popular scams and pitfalls to be aware of is available on its consumer website. It also operates a helpline at 1890 432 432 (from a landline) or 01 402 5555 (from a mobile). 

Irish Government -

The official site of the Irish government links to all government departments and organisations. It provides general information about Ireland, indices of recent publications and a search engine that searches all government sites. It also contains links to Iris Oifigiúil (the official means used by the Government for announcing appointments to public offices and publishing proclamations, statutory instruments, appointment of receivers to companies, etc), the National Development Plan, and enacted government legislation.

Oireachtas na hÉireann - Irish Parliament -

The website of the Irish upper (Seanad) and lower (Dáil) Houses of Parliament. The website contains links to schedules of business, parliamentary debates and Irish legislation (in the Irish statute book). It also has information on the history of the Irish legislature and a live web feed during parliamentary sessions.

The Ombudsman -

The Ombudsman has the power to examine complaints about the administrative actions of government departments, the Health Service Executive, local authorities and An Post. The current Ombudsman is Peter Tyndall. He can demand any information, document or file from a public body about which a complaint has been made and can require any official to give information about a complaint. In most instances, the Ombudsman's recommendations are complied with, but if the public body concerned fails to act on his recommendations, he may present a special report to the Houses of the Oireachtas on the matter.

The Ombudsman for Children -

The Ombudsman for Children holds the unique, independent and statutory position of promoting the rights and welfare of children and young people living in Ireland. The Ombudsman for Children's mission is to be an independent voice and catalyst for change on behalf of all children and young people in Ireland, to promote their rights and welfare and to promote a shared responsibility for developing a society where children and young people are better respected. The current Ombudsman is Dr Niall Muldoon.

Financial Regulator -

Part of the Irish Financial Services Regulatory Authority, the Financial Regulator is responsible for the regulation of all financial services firms in Ireland and as such is particularly important for protecting consumers' rights.

Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission -

The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) is an independent public body set up by the Irish Human Rights and Equality Act 2014. Its aim is to protect and promote human rights and equality throughout Ireland, as set out in the Constitution, national human rights and equality legislation, and european and international treaties and conventions.

The IHREC provides information to the public about their human and equality rights, and has published a number of useful information leaflets, which can be found on their website.

National Disability Authority -

The National Disability Authority (NDA) is an independent statutory agency which, on behalf of the State, promotes and helps secure the rights and entitlements of people with disabilities. It acts as a national body to assist in the coordination and development of disability policy, undertakes research and develops statistical information for the planning, delivery and monitoring of programmes and services for people with disabilities, advises the Minister on standards for programmes and services and prepare codes of practice, monitors the implementation of standards and codes of practice, and takes the lead in both encouraging and recognising the promotion of equality of people with disabilities.

The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) -

The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC)'s mission is to provide the public with an independent and effective oversight of policing, and to deal with the public's complaints concerning Gardaí fairly and efficiently so that everyone can have confidence in the complaints system. It will directly and independently investigate complaints against members of the Garda Síochána, investigate any matter, even where no complaint has been made, where it appears that a Garda may have committed an offence or behaved in a way that would justify disciplinary proceedings, and investigate any practice, policy or procedure of the Garda Síochána with a view to reducing the incidence of related complaints. The current Ombudsman Commission is composed of the Hon. Ms. Justice Mary Ellen Ring, Ms Carmel Foley and Mr Kieran Fitzgerald.

Combat Poverty Agency -

Note: As of Budget 2009, Combat Poverty has been subsumed into the Department of Social and Family Affairs.

Combat Poverty is dedicated to advising on ways to prevent and eliminate poverty and social exclusion. It realises its aims through the four general functions set out in the Combat Poverty Agency Act 1986: policy advice, project support and innovation, research and public education.

Legal Aid Board -

The Legal Aid Board provides legal aid and advice in civil cases to persons who satisfy the requirements of the Civil Legal Aid Act, 1995. In other words, their means must be below a certain limit and their case must have merit, i.e. there must be a solid basis for the case to go ahead. The Board makes the services of solicitors and, if necessary, barristers available to persons of moderate means at little cost. The service may include anything from writing a letter to representation in court proceedings. Some areas of law are excluded, including most proceedings before tribunals and anything involving an interest in property.