A school teacher and mother of eleven children (including Brendan O'Carroll), O'Carroll was educated at University College Galway and entered politics as a founder of the Lower Prices Council, which campaigned against high prices, scarcity and black marketeering in the aftermath of World War II.
She was elected to Dáil Éireann on her first attempt, at the 1954 general election to the 15th Dáil, when she was the third candidate to be elected in the three-seat Dublin North–Central constituency, defeating sitting Fianna Fáil TD Colm Gallagher. She served as Labour's Chief Whip from 1954 to 1957.
At the 1957 general election, she was defeated and Gallagher retook the seat. O'Carroll did not stand again for election to the Dáil.
O'Carroll was also the inspiration for the hit series Mrs Brown's Boys
- "Ms. Maureen O'Carroll". Oireachtas Members Database. Retrieved 1 September 2012.
- McNamara, Maedhbh; Mooney, Paschal (2000). Women in Parliament: Ireland 1918–2000. Dublin: Wolfhound Press. ISBN 0-86327-759-4.
- "Maureen O'Carroll". ElectionsIreland.org. Retrieved 1 September 2012.
- "Maureen O'Carroll". Centre for the Advancement of Women in Politics. Retrieved 1 September 2012.