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EU, Competition and State Aid

Our firm was built on this core practice area. We advise on cutting edge competition issues and regulatory law to a wide range of organisations in the energy, telecommunications and construction sectors. We are legal advisors to ComReg the national regulatory body for telecommunications.

quotes The services provided are very much a partner led and delivered service. Philip Lee’s excellent approach to building and maintaining client relationships is of particular note and, most importantly, they are there when you need them the most, no matter how short the notice is. Legal 500, 2021

We have developed a particular niche practice in defending cartel and competition law prosecutions by the Competition Authority and the DPP.  We successfully defend clients from the private sector, including energy and agriculture.  Indeed, we defend more criminal prosecutions and are involved in more cases in competition law enforcement than any other law firm in Ireland.

In essence our team will make sure that you are fully prepared for all compliance and enforcement issues.

One of our strengths is our experience of advising on the approaches of regulatory authorities at national level and critically, at EU and international level. We opened our offices in London, Brussels and San Francisco recognising that the market for legal services is global as well as local. Our active membership of the international network of independent law firms Multilaw, means you can be sure of prompt advice no matter what jurisdiction your business is in.

“They are client-focused, flexible and have a very practical approach to how they deliver their service.”  Chambers Europe, 2021

Policies and legislation emanating from Brussels have an impact on almost every sector of commercial life.  The law is in a constant change of flux, whether by new directives, regulations and decisions from Brussels or from significant decisions from the European Courts.  Our Dublin and Brussels team will help you to foresee, influence and understand the latest legal developments in this area.  We’ll help you utilise competition law to protect your interests against unfair competition.  We advise public and private bodies in relation to state aid, in particular the new state aid regulations and their effect on the infrastructure sector.

We have advised many companies in relation to merger notifications to the Irish Competition Authority and have represented clients in state aid litigation before the High Court and the European Commission and the EU General Court.

Key areas where clients seek our advice:

Irish and EC Merger Control

  • Abuse of dominant positon
  • Pricing and rebates
  • Access issues
  • Margin squeezes
  • Exclusivity provisions

EU State Aid Law

  • Complaints against competitors who are receiving aid
  • Representing recipients of aid in Commission investigations and notifications
  • Advising granting authorities on structuring deals within the limits of the rules
  • Advising recipients of aid on what is permissible under the rules
  • Advice on regional aid, research and development and innovation, risk capital, environmental aid, General Block Exemption Regulation aid to infrastructure, agriculture, transport etc
  • Advice in sectors such as energy, broadcasting, broadband and telecoms, aviation, transport, water, food, fisheries, adult education, services of general economic interest


  • Pursuant of damages for pricing fixing

Block Exemption

  • Motor vehicle
  • Spare parts
  • Licensing
  • State Aid

Defensive Strategies

  • Dawn raids
  • Criminal prosecutions
  • Defense litigation

Competition Law Compliance Programmes and Training 

  • Advise in regulated sectors
  • Telecommunications
  • Energy
  • Transport

Get In Touch

Philip Lee

Ronan Dunne