Skip to main content

Kathryn O'Sullivan

Biography

Dr Kathryn O' Sullivan is a Senior Lecturer of Law at the School of Law, University of Limerick, Ireland. Kathryn's primary research interests lie in family property law and succession law, however, she has also recently undertaken research on law and religion in Ireland. She is the Corresponding Member for Ireland with the Cambridge Family Law Centre at the University of Cambridge and was selected as a Dobbin Atlantic Scholar for 2017/18 by the Ireland Canada University Foundation.

She has published widely in highly respected national and international journals (including Legal Studies, the Journal of Family Studies and the International Journal of Law, Policy and the Family) and has provided expert analysis of legal issues for national media outlets in Ireland including RTÉ Radio 1 and the Irish Times. Her work has been cited in the British Columbia Court of Appeal in Canada (Venables v Venables [2019] BCCA 291).

Kathryn was recognised with the University of Limerick's 'Excellence in Teaching Award 2018' having twice been shortlisted in 2012 and 2015. She is the Director of International Education at the School of Law and Course Director for the LLM Master of Laws (General) – the GradIreland Postgraduate Course of the Year in Law for 2018.

Research Interests

Dr O'Sullivan's primary research interests lie in the area of family law, property law and succession law. She has conducted considerable comparative research analysing the various family property schemes which apply in a number of jurisdictions while a relationship subsists, on death and on relationship breakdown. She is particularly interested in the theoretical basis for the division of assets on relationship breakdown and the challenges faced by succession law as a result of the changes in family structures in recent decades.

Kathryn has also diversified her research into related family law fields and has investigated the legal protections afforded to minority religions, particularly the Muslim community.

Finally, Kathryn formed part of a team, led by colleagues in University College Cork, which obtained competitive national funding in 2015 to the value of €25,000 for a focused research project entitled: 'Teaching for Transitions: A Review of Teaching for Transitions related to Teaching and Learning Activity and Research'.

Teaching Interests

Kathryn has a keen interest in teaching and learning. She completed a Specialist Diploma in Teaching, Learning and Scholarship in 2014, graduating with First Class Honours, and was recognised with the University's 'Excellence in Teaching Award 2018' having previously received a Special Commendation for Excellence in Teaching in 2015. She has secured national funding from the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education on two occasions. She formed part of a team which received funding of €25,000 in 2015 to conduct a focused research project entitled: 'Teaching for Transitions: A Review of Teaching for Transitions related to Teaching and Learning Activity and Research' (available to download). In 2015, she, along with two colleagues, also secured National Forum funding to hold a one-day workshop entitled ‘Legal Pedagogy in Transition'. Moreover, Kathryn obtained a Teaching Development Grant from the University of Limerick to conduct research with International/Erasmus Law students and run a series of Legal English workshops to support such students.

Professional Activities

Award

  • 2018 - Dobbin Atlantic Scholar

Association

  • Member, International Society of Family Law
  • Member, Society of Legal Scholars (UK)
  • Member, Socio-Legal Studies Association (UK)
  • Member (formerly Executive Member 2013/14), Irish Association of Law Teachers
  • Member, International Commercial and Economic Law Research Group
  • Member, Gender Arc

Outreach

  • -

    Irish Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference, Kilkenny (November 2014)

    o

    Member of the organisation committee

  • -

    Judge Henchy Memorial Lecture (October 2014)

    o

    Co-Organiser (with Dr Laura Cahillane)

    o

    Guest speaker was Mr Justice Gerard Hogan, opening comments were by Professor Paul McCutcheon, UL and cha

  • -

    Children and Family Relationships Act 2015 Lecture (April 2015)

    o

    Co-Organiser (with Dr Susan Leahy & Dr Connie Healy)

    o

    Guest speaker Mr Geoffrey Shannon; Chair Judge Tom O'Donnell

    o

    CPD points available

  • -

    Legal Pedagogy Seminar (April 2015)

    o

    Co-Organiser (with Prof Shane Kilcommins & Dr Eimear Spain)

    o

    Invited speakers from TCD, UCD, UCC, NUIG, Law Society, King's Inns etc

  • - ‘Minority Religions under Irish Law Symposium: Islam in National and International Context' (November 2017)

    o

    Sole organizer

    o

    Invited national and international speakers (Emory University, USA; University of Windsor, Canada; University of Copenhagen, Denmark; SOAS, University of London; etc.)

Committee

  • International Education Committee, School of Law,
  • Marketing Committee, School of Law,

Publications

Books

2021

Religion and the Law in Ireland
O'Sullivan, K
(2021) Religion and the Law in Ireland
Netherlands : Kluwer

2018

Annotated Legal Documents on Islam in Europe: Ireland
O'Sullivan, K
(2018) Annotated Legal Documents on Islam in Europe: Ireland
Leiden: Netherlands : Brill

Book Chapters

2019

‘Recognition of Muslim Marriages Ceremonies in Ireland: An Analysis'
Leahy, S and O'Sullivan, K
(2019) ‘Recognition of Muslim Marriages Ceremonies in Ireland: An Analysis'
In Minority Religions under Irish Law: Islam in National and International Context; O'Sullivan, K(Ed.) Leiden: Netherlands : Brill pp. 108-130
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004398252_007
[ULIR]

2019

Introduction
O'Sullivan, K
(2019) Introduction
In Minority Religions under Irish Law: Islam in National and International Context; O'Sullivan, K(Ed.) Leiden: Netherlands : Brill pp. 1-4
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004398252_002
[ULIR]

Edited Books

2019

Minority Religions under Irish Law: Islam in National and International Context
(2019) Minority Religions under Irish Law: Islam in National and International Context
O'Sullivan, K(Ed.) Leiden: Netherlands : Brill

Peer Reviewed Journals

2021

‘Location, Location, Location: The Future of Weddings Law in Ireland and England'
O'Sullivan, K
(2021) ‘Location, Location, Location: The Future of Weddings Law in Ireland and England'
In Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law;

2019

'Religious-Only Marriages & Officiant-Based Marriage Law Reform: An Irish Perspective'
O'Sullivan, K
(2019) 'Religious-Only Marriages & Officiant-Based Marriage Law Reform: An Irish Perspective'
In Family Law; pp. 1156-1160
[ULIR]

2019

‘Pensions on Divorce in Ireland: Law, Practice & A Way Forward?'
O'Sullivan, K
(2019) ‘Pensions on Divorce in Ireland: Law, Practice & A Way Forward?'
In Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly; pp. 311-329
[ULIR]

2019

'Access to Marriage: Consanguinity and Affinity Prohibitions in National and International Context
O'Sullivan, K
(2019) 'Access to Marriage: Consanguinity and Affinity Prohibitions in National and International Context
In Irish Journal Of Family Law; pp. 8-12
[ULIR]

2019

‘La legge sul divorzio in Irlanda: contesto, applicazione e necessità di una riforma'
O'Sullivan, K
(2019) ‘La legge sul divorzio in Irlanda: contesto, applicazione e necessità di una riforma'
In Rivista Archivio giuridico Filippo Serafini;

2019

Posthumously Conceived Children and Succession Law: A View from Ireland
O'Sullivan K.
(2019) Posthumously Conceived Children and Succession Law: A View from Ireland
In International Journal of Law, Policy & the Family; pp. 380-402
DOI: 10.1093/lawfam/ebz014

2019

Unrecognised Muslim Marriage in Ireland: Incidence and Implications
Leahy S.;O’Sullivan K.
(2019) Unrecognised Muslim Marriage in Ireland: Incidence and Implications
In Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs;
DOI: 10.1080/13602004.2019.1684032

2019

‘Posthumous Conception and the General Scheme of the Assisted Human Reproduction Bill 2017'
O'Sullivan, K
(2019) ‘Posthumous Conception and the General Scheme of the Assisted Human Reproduction Bill 2017'
In Dublin University Law Journal; pp. 203-211

2019

The Legacy Continues: Ancillary Relief on Divorce in Ireland
O'Sullivan, K
(2019) The Legacy Continues: Ancillary Relief on Divorce in Ireland
In Journal Of Family Studies; pp. 337-350
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13229400.2016.1264307
[ULIR]

2018

‘Changing Conceptions of Marriage in Ireland: Law and Practice'
Leahy, S and O'Sullivan, K
(2018) ‘Changing Conceptions of Marriage in Ireland: Law and Practice'
In Child and Family Law Quarterly; pp. 279-300
[ULIR]

2018

'A Lot Done, More to do?': Local Authority Housing Standards in Ireland
O'Sullivan, K
(2018) 'A Lot Done, More to do?': Local Authority Housing Standards in Ireland
In Conveyancing And Property Law Journal 2;
[ULIR]

2017

'Muslim Marriage (Non)Recognition: Implications and Possible Solutions'
O'Sullivan, K; Jackson, L
(2017) 'Muslim Marriage (Non)Recognition: Implications and Possible Solutions'
In Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law;
DOI: 10.1080/09649069.2016.1272767
[ULIR]

2017

Legislative Comment: Family property division under the Family Law Act 2011
O'Sullivan, K
(2017) Legislative Comment: Family property division under the Family Law Act 2011
In University of British Columbia Law Review; pp. 161-196
[ULIR]

2017

Distribution of Intestate Estates in Non-Traditional Families – A way forward?
O'Sullivan, K
(2017) Distribution of Intestate Estates in Non-Traditional Families – A way forward?
In Common Law World Review; pp. 21-41
[ULIR]

2017

Reform of section 117 of the Succession Act 1965: Implications and opportunities for the protection of surviving spouses
O'Sullivan, K
(2017) Reform of section 117 of the Succession Act 1965: Implications and opportunities for the protection of surviving spouses
In Conveyancing And Property Law Journal 2; pp. 9-14
[ULIR]

2016

'Low-flying Drones and Ownership of Airspace in Ireland'
O'Sullivan, K
(2016) 'Low-flying Drones and Ownership of Airspace in Ireland'
In Conveyancing And Property Law Journal 2; pp. 7-11
[ULIR]

2016

'Putting the cart before the horse? The Arbitration and Media Services (Equality) Bill'
Jackson, L; O'Sullivan, K
(2016) 'Putting the cart before the horse? The Arbitration and Media Services (Equality) Bill'
In Family Law; pp. 82-85
[ULIR]

2016

‘'Til Death do us Part': Surviving Spouses, Civil Partners & Provision on Intestacy in Ireland'
O'Sullivan, K
(2016) ‘'Til Death do us Part': Surviving Spouses, Civil Partners & Provision on Intestacy in Ireland'
In Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law; pp. 118-139
[ULIR]

2016

'Rethinking Ancillary Relief on Divorce in Ireland: The Challenges and Opportunities'
O'Sullivan, K
(2016) 'Rethinking Ancillary Relief on Divorce in Ireland: The Challenges and Opportunities'
In Legal Studies; pp. 111-135
[ULIR]

2016

'Ancillary Relief and Private Ordering: The vulnerability of financially weaker spouses'
O'Sullivan, K
(2016) 'Ancillary Relief and Private Ordering: The vulnerability of financially weaker spouses'
In Irish Journal Of Family Law; pp. 3-6
[ULIR]

2016

'Lessons in family property law reform: The British Columbian experience'
O'Sullivan, K
(2016) 'Lessons in family property law reform: The British Columbian experience'
In International Family Law; pp. 217-
[ULIR]

2014

‘The Family Home Protection Act 1976: A case for legislative reform'
O'Sullivan, K
(2014) ‘The Family Home Protection Act 1976: A case for legislative reform'
In Irish Journal Of Family Law; Roundhall Dublin :
[ULIR]

2013

‘Protection Against the Unilateral Disposition of the Family Home: An Irish perspective'
O'Sullivan, K
(2013) ‘Protection Against the Unilateral Disposition of the Family Home: An Irish perspective'
In International Journal of Law, Policy & the Family; Oxford : pp. 399-428
DOI: 10.1093/lawfam/ebt012
[ULIR]

2013

‘The Right to Appropriate the Family Home: A proposal for reform'
O'Sullivan, K
(2013) ‘The Right to Appropriate the Family Home: A proposal for reform'
In Dublin University Law Journal; Clarus Press : pp. 342-358
[ULIR]

2012

‘Spousal Disinheritance Protections under Irish Law: A proposal for reform'
O'Sullivan, K
(2012) ‘Spousal Disinheritance Protections under Irish Law: A proposal for reform'
In Common Law World Review; Vathek : pp. 246-280
[ULIR]

Conference Publications

2017

International Society of Family Law World Conference
OSullivan, K
(2017) International Society of Family Law World Conference
Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
[ULIR]

2017

IV Congresso Internacional de Direito de Personalidade, UniCesumar, Maringá, Brazil
O'Sullivan, K
(2017) IV Congresso Internacional de Direito de Personalidade, UniCesumar, Maringá, Brazil

[ULIR]

2017

World Congress on Family Law and Children's Rights
OSullivan, K
(2017) World Congress on Family Law and Children's Rights
Dublin, Ireland
[ULIR]

2017

Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference, University College Dublin, Ireland
O'Sullivan, K
(2017) Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference, University College Dublin, Ireland

2017

Unregistered Muslim Marriages – Regulations and Contestations Symposium
OSullivan, K; Leahy S
(2017) Unregistered Muslim Marriages – Regulations and Contestations Symposium
De Monfort University, Leicester, England

2017

Minority Religions under Irish Law Symposium, University of Limerick, Ireland
O'Sullivan K; Leahy S
(2017) Minority Religions under Irish Law Symposium, University of Limerick, Ireland

2017

Unregistered Muslim Marriages: Regulations and Contestations, De Montfort University, Leicester
Leahy, S and O'Sullivan, K
(2017) Unregistered Muslim Marriages: Regulations and Contestations, De Montfort University, Leicester

2016

Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference
O'Sullivan, K; Leahy, S
(2016) Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference
University of Oxford, England

2016

Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference
O'Sullivan, K
(2016) Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference
University of Lancaster, England
[ULIR]

2016

Irish Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference, Waterford, Ireland
O'Sullivan, K; Leahy, S
(2016) Irish Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference, Waterford, Ireland

2015

Legal Pedagogy in Transition Seminar
Kathryn O'Sullivan
(2015) Legal Pedagogy in Transition Seminar
University of Limerick
[ULIR]

2015

Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference
O'Sullivan, K; Jackson, L
(2015) Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference
Warwick University, England
[ULIR]

2015

National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning
Higgs, B; Kilcommins, S; et al
(2015) National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning

[ULIR]

2015

Drones: Coming to a Sky near you
O'Sullivan, K
(2015) Drones: Coming to a Sky near you
University of Limerick
[ULIR]

2015

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science Annual Teaching Day
Kathryn O'Sullivan
(2015) Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science Annual Teaching Day
University of Limerick
[ULIR]

2015

Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference
Kathryn O'Sullivan
(2015) Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference
University of York, England
[ULIR]

2014

Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference
Kathryn O'Sullivan
(2014) Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference

[ULIR]

2014

Irish Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference
Kathryn O'Sullivan
(2014) Irish Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference
Kilkenny, Ireland,
[ULIR]

2013

Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference
Kathryn O'Sullivan
(2013) Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference
University of Edinburgh, Scotland,
[ULIR]

2013

Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference
Kathryn O'Sullivan
(2013) Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference
University of York, England
[ULIR]

Published Reports

2015

'Teaching for Transitions: A Review of Teaching for Transitions related to Teaching and Learning Activity and Research'
Higgs, B, Kilcommins, S, O'Sullivan, K et al
(2015) 'Teaching for Transitions: A Review of Teaching for Transitions related to Teaching and Learning Activity and Research'
Dublin, Ireland : National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning/UCC
[ULIR]

Other Publications

2021

‘Book Review of Alan Brown: What is the Family of Law? The Influence of the Nuclear Family'
O'Sullivan, K
(2021) ‘Book Review of Alan Brown: What is the Family of Law? The Influence of the Nuclear Family'

2018

'Book Review of Law and Policy in Modern Family Finance: Property Division in the 21st Century'
O'Sullivan, K
(2018) 'Book Review of Law and Policy in Modern Family Finance: Property Division in the 21st Century'
In Child and Family Law Quarterly;

2017

'Intestacy, wills and surviving spouses: The need for reform'
O'Sullivan, K
(2017) 'Intestacy, wills and surviving spouses: The need for reform'
In Ageing Matters (Age Action Ireland);

2017

Submission to Law Reform Commission of Ireland: Section 117 Review
O'Sullivan, Kathryn
(2017) Submission to Law Reform Commission of Ireland: Section 117 Review

2017

‘What is the legality of children conceived posthumously?'
OSullivan, K
(2017) ‘What is the legality of children conceived posthumously?'
In Irish Examiner; Cork, Ireland :
[ULIR]

2015

'A Critique of the Legal Protections afforded to the Matrimonial Home – Ireland and British Columbia Compared'
O'Sullivan, K
(2015) 'A Critique of the Legal Protections afforded to the Matrimonial Home – Ireland and British Columbia Compared'
University of Victoria Law School, Canada :

2015

‘How can the Cayman Islands approach solve the Muslim Marriage Conundrum in England and Wales'
O'Sullivan, K; Jackson, L
(2015) ‘How can the Cayman Islands approach solve the Muslim Marriage Conundrum in England and Wales'
Truman Bodden Law School of the Cayman Islands :

2015

'Law must be updated to protect vulnerable surviving spouses'
O'Sullivan, K.
(2015) 'Law must be updated to protect vulnerable surviving spouses'

[ULIR]

2015

‘Succession Law in Ireland'
O'Sullivan, K
(2015) ‘Succession Law in Ireland'
Community Law Programme, University of Limerick :

2015

'Property owners and drone users vie for rights to the sky'
O'Sullivan, K.
(2015) 'Property owners and drone users vie for rights to the sky'
In Irish Times; Dublin, Ireland :
[ULIR]

2014

'Matrimonial Property, Needs and Agreements - A submission'
O'Sullivan, K
(2014) 'Matrimonial Property, Needs and Agreements - A submission'

2013

'Book Review of Rob George: Ideas and Debates in Family Law'
O'Sullivan, K
(2013) 'Book Review of Rob George: Ideas and Debates in Family Law'

2012

‘Death, Divorce and Matrimonial Property under Irish Law'
O'Sullivan, K
(2012) ‘Death, Divorce and Matrimonial Property under Irish Law'
In Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference; De Montfort University, Leicester, England :

2012

‘Deferred Community of Property: Why the reluctance for reform?'
O'Sullivan, K
(2012) ‘Deferred Community of Property: Why the reluctance for reform?'
In Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference; University of Bristol, England :

2011

‘The Legal Right Share and the Surviving Spouse: A proposal for reform'
O'Sullivan, K
(2011) ‘The Legal Right Share and the Surviving Spouse: A proposal for reform'
In Irish Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference; Athlone, Ireland :

2010

‘The Family Home Protection Act 1976 – An irrelevant statute in the Ireland of 2010?'
O'Sullivan, K
(2010) ‘The Family Home Protection Act 1976 – An irrelevant statute in the Ireland of 2010?'
In Moving Forward Conference; University of Aberdeen, Scotland :