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23 1992



Dáil Election Petitions

Questioning of Dáil elections.

132. —(1) A Dáil election may, and may only, be questioned by a petition to the High Court.

(2) The provisions of the Third Schedule shall have effect as regards a petition.

(3) (a) Subject to paragraph (b) and Rule 2 (2) of the Third Schedule a petition shall not be accepted for lodgment with the court unless the petitioner lodges with the petition security in the sum of £5,000 for costs which may become payable by him.

(b) Where the court is satisfied that a petitioner is unable to lodge the amount specified in paragraph (a) or that to require a petitioner to lodge the said amount would cause him serious hardship, the court may require him to lodge such lesser amount as the court considers appropriate.

(4) A petition may be presented by any person who is registered or entitled to be registered as a Dáil elector in the constituency but may only be presented within a period specified in Rule 3 of the Third Schedule .

(5) A Dáil election may be questioned on the grounds of want of eligibility, the commission of an offence referred to in Part XXII , obstruction of or interference with or other hindrance to the conduct of the election or mistake or other irregularity which is likely to have affected the result of the election.

(6) Any party to a petition may appeal on a question of law to the Supreme Court against a decision of the High Court on the petition and subject to the foregoing the decision of the High Court shall be final and not appealable.

(7) At the trial of a petition the High Court shall determine the matter at issue in the petition and, if it does not dismiss the petition, shall, where appropriate, include in its order determining the matter at issue either—

(a) a declaration of the correct result of the election concerned, or

(b) if it considers that it is unable to determine the correct result of the election, a declaration that the election or a specified part thereof was void together with a statement of its reasons for making the declaration.

(8) Where the court declares that the whole or any part of a Dáil election was void, a fresh election shall be held in accordance with the provisions of this Act to fill the resulting vacancy or vacancies in the Dáil and the poll at the fresh election shall be taken on such day, being a day within the period of three months beginning on the date of the court's order, as the Minister by order appoints; provided that it shall not be obligatory under this subsection to hold a fresh election if a general election otherwise is due to be held in the State within the period of six months next following the said date.