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Irish Mothers & Property Rights

July 2, 2018 0 Comments

Our guest contributor highlights the very different outcomes when it comes to the property rights of a married vs. an unmarried woman:

“Unmarried Irish Mothers Have No Rights”

Yvonne Walsh is an unmarried Irish mother.  Perhaps not a politically correct distinction to make in this 21st century Ireland of alleged equal status for all.  But no such basic property rights are enjoyed by these women.

Before the law, it seems nothing has changed.

Yvonne has been detained in Mountjoy prison for almost two months* based on a charge of contempt of court. She refused to abandon her family home with her twin girls based on a court order to vacate her home back in 2015.

Equal status does not exist for Irish unmarried mothers,

Yvonne’s rights were ignored by her ex-partners’ solicitor; he was required by law on the conveyancing of the family home to obtain Yvonne’s Consent, to guarantee Yvonne got independent advice, to insure Yvonne and her babies were protected, to register Yvonne’s name on the property. This practice has occurred for centuries across Ireland because solicitors ignore the rights of unmarried mothers.

Life happened, Yvonne and her partner broke-up, years later Yvonne found herself as a lay litigant in person before Judge Marie Baker desperately fighting to keep her family from homelessness. It is a home that had no mortgage, a property embroiled in her ex-partners commercial dealings.

Yvonne sits in prison because she is an unmarried mother in Ireland with no rights.

Contrast this with the outcome for the married Catriona Fitzpatrick

Also appearing before Ms. Justice Baker, she claimed she knew nothing of her husband’s financial dealings, she did not consent, and her informed consent was not obtained.

She is the wife of Sean ”Seanie” Fitzpatrick, former chairman of Anglo Irish Bank, who, while acquitted of all charges of financial irregularities, had resigned in December 2008 under a cloud when details of secret loans he had taken out with Anglo were revealed. He was declared bankrupt in 2010.

Catriona Fitzpatrick prevailed. She walked away from the same courts with millions of euros in property and her husband’s Anglo Irish Bank pension retained. A pension funded by the Irish taxpayers.

Yvonne Walsh still languishes in prison.

 

*Jailed Friday, 4. May 2018.

Tom Darcy, Author, Waiting for the Sheriff; Co-founder Right2Homes

#YvonneWalsh  – for more information on hashtags currently in use on the subject – See Driving Excellence in Ireland, a Hashtag Primer

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