The Department of Justice works to advance community and national security, promote justice and equality and safeguard human rights, to achieve our vision of a safe, fair and inclusive Ireland.

As of Autumn 2019, the Department has significantly restructured and has moved to a new functional organisation model. The Department is now aligned under two pillars, Civil Justice and Criminal Justice, each led by a Deputy Secretary General.  Each pillar contains the following functions: Policy, Legislation, Governance, and Operations & Service Delivery.  Further details on the recent restructuring programme can be found here: Reform and Transformation

In addition, the Immigration Service Delivery function located in the Civil Justice pillar manages the delivery of immigration and international protection services for the Department and the State.

Supporting the work of both pillars are the enabling functions of Transparency, Corporate, and European Affairs. A range of other responsibilities are also exercised on behalf of the Department by agencies operating on either a statutory or an administrative basis.

Full details of our strategy and business plans can be found in the Department of Justice Strategy Statement 2021 - 2023 and in our Department of Justice Action Plan 2021.


Our Ministers

 Minister Heather Humphreys

Minister Heather Humphreys

Heather Humphreys TD is the Minister for Social Protection, Minister for Justice, and Minister for Rural and Community Development.

Heather previously worked with Ulster Bank and prior to her election to Dáil Éireann, she was Manager of Cootehill Credit Union.

As Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather led the successful 2016 Centenary Programme and during her time as Minister with responsibility for rural affairs, she launched the Action Plan for Rural Development.

As Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather played a leading role in the government’s response to the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis.

Prior to being appointed to Cabinet, she served as a member of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform.


 Minister James Browne

Minister James Browne

James Browne TD is the Minister of State at the Department of Justice with responsibility for Law Reform. James was appointed to this role in September 2020. 

James was elected to Dáil Éireann in the February 2016 general election as a representative of Wexford and re-elected in the 2020 general election.

He has served as the Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Mental Health, leading initiatives to reform mental health services in Ireland, including the Mental Health (Amendment) Act 2018 and served on the Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Mental Healthcare.

He was born in Enniscorthy, Wexford, and is the oldest of a family of 4. He was educated locally at St. Mary’s CBS, Enniscorthy before attending Waterford IT, University College Cork and the King’s Inns. He was called to the Bar in 2006.

 Minister Hildegarde Naughton

Minister Hildegarde Naughton

Hildegarde Naughton TD is Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications and Minister of State at the Department of Justice with special responsibility for Civil and Criminal Justice.

Hildegarde was elected to represent the Galway West constituency in the 2020 general election. She has served on a number of Oireachtas committees including the Future of Healthcare, and Budgetary Scrutiny. She was appointed as the chair of the Communications, Climate Action and Environment committee in 2016.

Hildegarde was a primary school teacher and was elected to Galway City Council in 2009. She was mayor of the city in 2011/2012.

 Minister McEntee

Minister Helen McEntee

Helen McEntee TD is currently on maternity leave until November 2021.

She was appointed to Minister for Justice in June 2020.

Helen was elected to Dáil Éireann in a By-Election in March 2013, and re-elected in the February 2016 general election. Deputy McEntee was appointed by the Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD to be Minister for Mental Health and Older People at the Department of Health in May 2016 as part of the new Partnership Government.

In June 2017, as part of a government reshuffle by newly appointed Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD, Minister McEntee was promoted to the position of Minister of State for EU Affairs.

She previously served on the Oireachtas Committee on Transport and Communications, and was also a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Environment, Culture and the Gaeltacht.



Department Management    Who Does What logo

The Role of the Secretary General

Oonagh McPhillips is our Secretary General.  The Secretary General is the senior civil servant and non-political head of the Department.  Her job is day-to-day management and non-political strategic planning and direction.

The Secretary General is the Accounting Officer.  She is responsible for safeguarding the funds under the control of the Department and for ensuring economy and efficiency in the running of the Department.


Corporate Information

Strategic Planning


Quality Customer Service


Corporate Governance


Corporate Reporting


Access to information