Givan was the son of John Givan of Castlecaulfield, County Tyrone, and his wife Margaretta daughter of James Macdonnell. His father was a prominent linen manufacturer. Givan was educated at private schools and became a solicitor in 1870. He was J.P. for Aughnacloy and chairman of the Aughnacloy town commissioners.
At the 1880 general election Givan was elected as one of the two Members of Parliament (MPs) for Monaghan. He held the seat until 1883, when he resigned to take up an appointment as Crown Solicitor for the County Meath and County Louth and for the town of Drogheda. He died at Martray Manor, Ballygawley, County Tyrone at the age of 57.
Givan married firstly Eliza Hopper, daughter of Samuel Hopper, secondly in 1878 Araminta Reid Ross, daughter of James M Ross of Liscarney Monaghan, and thirdly in 1894, Emily Cooke, daughter of Rev. William Cooke of Kilkenny.
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "M" (part 3)
- Debretts House of Commons and the Judicial Bench 1881
- Walker, Brian M., ed. (1978). Parliamentary Election Results in Ireland 1801–1922. A New History of Ireland. Dublin: Royal Irish Academy. p. 306. ISBN 0901714127. ISSN 0332-0286.
- "No. 25248". The London Gazette. 6 July 1883. p. 3425.
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by John Givan
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
| Member of Parliament for Monaghan
1880 – 1883
With: William Findlater
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