Fergus Doorly


+353 1 639 5172
fergus.doorly@williamfry.com vCard Linkedin

Fergus is a Partner in William Fry’s Litigation & Dispute Resolution Department, specialising in restructuring, insolvency and commercial litigation.  His restructuring and insolvency expertise is advising examiners, liquidators and receivers of companies, as well as creditors, directors and shareholders of companies that require restructuring or are insolvent.  He has experience in all aspects of commercial litigation, with a particular emphasis on shareholder disputes, contractual disputes, financial services and tax litigation. 

Recent significant work includes advising:

  • two landlords in a successful application to dismiss a petition for the appointment of an examiner to New Look Retailers (Ireland) Limited
  • Irish companies in the Skillsoft Group of companies on their restructuring through Chapter 11 in the US;
  • a secured lender in the enforcement of a share pledge over shares in an aircraft leasing company;
  • Michael McAteer of Grant Thornton as examiner of Weatherford International Limited;
  • EY as the Joint Administrators of Nortel Networks (Ireland) Limited;
  • Ken Fennell and James Anderson of Deloitte as Liquidators of Karen Millen Ireland Limited;
  • Neil Hughes of Baker Tilly Hughes Blake as Examiner of Regan Development Limited;
  • the directors of a company that operated a retail store in deferring disqualification / restriction proceedings;
  • a number of retailers through successful examinership processes, including:
    • Mothercare Ireland Limited;
    • Debenhams Retail (Ireland) Limited;
    • B&Q Ireland Limited;
  • stakeholders in numerous retail insolvencies and restructurings, including:
    • Bradley Pharmacy Group (acting for the investor);
    • Monsoon Accessorize Ireland Limited (actin for the examiner);
    • House of Fraser;
  • the Respondents in a multi-million euro shareholder dispute heard by the Commercial Court and the Court of Appeal where the Petitioner issued proceedings alleging minority oppression; and
  • ICDL GCC Foundation FZ-LLC in the Commercial Court and the Supreme Court in its successful claim against the European Computer Driving Licence Foundation Limited.

Fergus lectures on the Law Society of Ireland’s professional training courses. He is a member of the Consultative Committee of Accountancy Bodies of Ireland (CCABI), a member of the Irish Society of Insolvency Practitioners and a member of INSOL Europe. 

Clients enthuse: "He's very easy to deal with, solution-driven and very calm. He makes complex situations seem easier to deal with." Chambers Europe 2021 

"Fergus offers clear and contextualised advice to help clients navigate complex matters of Irish law. He is friendly, unflappable and works collaboratively with co-counsel from other jurisdictions." Legal 500 EMEA 2021

According to Legal 500 2020, Fergus is "a brilliant lawyer and thinks carefully about cases, the pitfalls and the strategy. He sees the big picture while not missing any of the detail. You won’t go wrong with Fergus in your team." Another clients adds that he is a "trusted advisor with extensive knowledge of pertinent case law."

Fergus "is a really astute insolvency lawyer. Well respected among his peers and contentious issues arising do not faze him. He is always highly responsive with advice, not just highly responsive for the sake of it. From a client perspective, even though he is instructed on a large number of mandates, you get the service as if you were the sole client." Legal 500 2020

Clients say Fergus "always provides quality advice in a timely manner that clearly focuses on the issues at hand." Chambers Europe 2020

“Fergus is very measured but very effective. He plans carefully and anticipates and solves problems before they arise. Fergus is a top insolvency lawyer and a man you want on your side in a fight.” IFLR1000 2020

Fergus Doorly is highlighted by one source as "an experienced insolvency solicitor with a proven track record over many years working on high-profile cases," also describing him as "very approachable and responsive." Chambers Europe 2019 

"Precise and excellent industry knowledge with very strong strategic sense."..."A very experienced restructuring advisor. Technically strong, responsive with a calm and methodical approach." IFLR 1000 2019

Fergus Doorly is deeply respected by market commentators, who consider him to be a highly experienced practitioner in this field.  Chambers Europe 2018

In Chamber Europe 2017, clients consider Fergus to be "strategically and tactically very good" in corporate litigation. 

IFLR 1000 2017 say "Fergus Doorly is a superb lawyer. His advice is reasoned, considered and delivered in a calm reassuring way. He knows the court system and can anticipate problems well in advance."