Mr Derek Shortall


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Derek was conferred a first class honours LLB degree from Nottingham Trent University (NTU) in 2008. In 2009 he was conferred with the Barrister-at-Law degree by the Honourable Society of the Kings Inns, Dublin.

Derek is a practising barrister, specialising in the area of Social Welfare Law and general Judicial Review, with a strong emphasis on the rights of EU Migrants. He has acted for Applicants is a number of important, high-profile cases, one of which is being referred, by way of Preliminary reference, to the Court of Justice of the European Union.

Derek is a doctoral candidate researching in the area of Social Welfare Law. 

Derek is the co-founder of a number of voluntary charitable organisations, including: Streetline (1993) a residential centre for homeless children; Carline Centre (1993), and CMS (1995) both alternative educational centres and; the Line Projects Housing Association (2002). Derek was conferred with the title of Dublin Person of the Year (1997) and conferred with an honorary degree by Neumann College, PA, USA (2000) in recognition of his work with young people in Ireland.


Research Interests

  • Social Welfare Law
  • Child Law
  • EU law

Research Projects

PhD Thesis

‘An Attempt at Clarifying the Complex Interaction between European Union and National Law’

Abstract: There is a complex interaction between European Union and national law which determines the entitlement of EU nationals to social welfare in this State. The purpose of this thesis is threefold: to define and, where appropriate, expand the legal basis of those entitlements; to identify third country national social welfare rights and; to bring clarity to a highly technical and problematic area of the law. Particular emphasis is laid upon the effect of transitional measures on the rights of Romanian and Bulgarian nationals.

Teaching Areas

Lecture on Social Welfare Law at Special Non-contributory Benefits for EU Migrants, organised by AIRE Centre, London and FLAC Dublin (March 2012)

Forthcoming lectures include 'An Introduction to Social Welfare Law' (February 2013) Law Society of Ireland.