Thomas Finlay (judge)

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Thomas Finlay
7th Chief Justice of Ireland
In office
10 October 1985 – 16 March 1994
Nominated byGovernment of Ireland
Appointed byPatrick Hillery
Preceded byTom O'Higgins
Succeeded byLiam Hamilton
Judge of the Supreme Court
In office
3 September 1985 – 16 March 1994
Nominated byGovernment of Ireland
Appointed byPatrick Hillery
President of the High Court
In office
10 January 1974 – 1 September 1985
Nominated byGovernment of Ireland
Appointed byErskine H. Childers
Preceded byAindrias Ó Caoimh
Succeeded byLiam Hamilton
Judge of the High Court
In office
2 March 1971 – 1 September 1985
Nominated byGovernment of Ireland
Appointed byÉamon de Valera
Teachta Dála
In office
May 1954 – March 1957
ConstituencyDublin South-Central
Personal details
Born
Thomas Aloysius Finlay

(1922-09-17)17 September 1922
Blackrock, Dublin, Ireland
Died3 December 2017(2017-12-03) (aged 95)
Irishtown, Dublin, Ireland
Resting placeShanganagh Cemetery,
Shankill, Dublin, Ireland
NationalityIrish
Political partyFine Gael
Spouse(s)Alice Blayney (m. 1947; d. 2007)
Relations
Children4, including Mary
Parents
EducationClongowes Wood College
Alma mater

Thomas Aloysius Finlay (17 September 1922 – 3 December 2017) was an Irish judge, politician and barrister who served as Chief Justice of Ireland and a Justice of the Supreme Court from 1985 to 1994, President of the High Court from 1974 to 1985 and a Judge of the High Court from 1971 to 1985. He served as a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Dublin South-Central constituency from 1954 to 1957.[1]

Early life[edit]

He is the second son of Thomas Finlay, a politician and senior counsel whose career was cut short by his early death in 1932. He was educated at Clongowes Wood College, University College Dublin (UCD) and King's Inns. While in UCD, he was elected Auditor of the University College Dublin Law Society. He was called to the Bar in 1944 and to the Inner Bar in 1961.[2]

Career[edit]

He was elected to Dáil Éireann as a Fine Gael Teachta Dála (TD) for the Dublin South-Central constituency at the 1954 general election.[3] He lost his seat at the 1957 general election.[4]

In 1971, he was appointed a Judge of the High Court, and was later appointed President of the High Court in 1974. In 1985, he was nominated by Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald as a Judge of the Supreme Court and as Chief Justice of Ireland. On 10 October 1985, he was appointed by President Patrick Hillery to both roles. He remained in both positions until he announced his resignation and retirement in 1994.

Personal life[edit]

He is a member of a legal family: his father and brother William were both Senior Counsels as is his son John; both his brother-in-law, John Blayney, and his son-in-law, Hugh Geoghegan, were judges of the Supreme Court, as was Hugh's father, James Geoghegan. Thomas's daughter Mary was a judge of the High Court, the Court of Appeal and in late 2017 was made a judge of the Supreme Court.

Death[edit]

Thomas Finlay died on 3 December 2017, aged 95.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Europa Publications (1997). The international who's who, 1997-98 (61 ed.). Europa Publications. p. 48. ISBN 1857430220.
  2. ^ "Former Chief Justices". The Supreme Court of Ireland. Retrieved 27 November 2008.
  3. ^ "Mr. Thomas Finlay". Oireachtas Members Database. Retrieved 27 November 2008.
  4. ^ "Thomas Finlay". ElectionsIreland.org. Retrieved 27 November 2008.
  5. ^ "Death announced of former chief justice Thomas Finlay". Irishtimes.com. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
Legal offices
Preceded by
Tom O'Higgins
Chief Justice of Ireland
1985–1994
Succeeded by
Liam Hamilton