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Robert is Head of our Financial Regulation practice, specialising in Irish and European financial services regulation.

Robert advises a wide range of domestic and international clients. His practice includes advice on Irish and EU authorisation and perimeter issues, ongoing compliance with conduct of business and other requirements, regulatory capital, market abuse, securities regulations, fintech and payment services, AML, corporate governance and financial institution M&A (including sales and purchases of financial assets). Robert also advises on regulatory enforcement action taken by the Central Bank of Ireland and European Central Bank and on industry investigations and inquiries. Robert previously worked in the Financial Regulation group of Clifford Chance LLP in London for several years.

Relevant Experience

  • Advising multiple financial institution clients on their response to Brexit, including advising on credit institution, investment firm, asset manager, payment institution and e-money institution licence application projects in the context of Brexit
  • Advising both buyers and sellers of Irish financial assets (including all categories of loan, e.g. commercial, mortgage and consumer) and coordinating regulatory due diligence on residential and commercial loan portfolio sales/purchases and securitisations
  • Advising on regulatory aspects of multiple financial institution M&A transactions (including on change of control notifications)
  • Advising on compliance with Irish conduct of business requirements, including the MiFID Regulations 2017, the Central Bank’s client asset rules and the Consumer Protection Code 2012
  • Advising on the Central Bank’s fitness and probity regime and proposed SEAR regime
  • Advising clients on responding to several recent Central Bank of Ireland enforcement cases under its administrative sanctions procedure
  • Advising a number of clients on Tier 1 and Tier 2 capital transactions
  • Advising clients on corporate governace and systems and controls, including in relation to outsourcing arrangements
  • Advising numerous clients on the implementation of recent legislation and regulatory requirements, including MiFID II, PSD II, the Consumer Credit Directive, the Code of Conduct on Mortgage Arrears, the Corporate Governance Code for Credit Institutions, the Consumer Protection Code 2012 and the SME Regulations 2015


+353 1 920 1050

Ten Earlsfort Terrace
Dublin 2
D02 T380

  • MA (Jurisprudence), University of Oxford (St. Peter’s College), 1999
  • Admitted as a solicitor in Ireland, 2008
  • Admitted as a solicitor in England & Wales (non-practising), 2002
  • Member of the Association of Compliance Officers in Ireland (ACOI)
  • Member of the Institute of Directors in Ireland

“I always found Rob to be very knowledgeable… he’s practical and an excellent lawyer.”
Chambers FinTech 2021 Guide

“Responsive, commercial, and understandable.”
IFLR 1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms, 2020

‘Robert Cain is an excellent partner. Very smart with good response times. Knows our institution very well and tailors his responses to accommodate our idiosyncrasies.’
The Legal 500: Europe, Middle East & Africa, 2020

Leading Lawyer, Highly Regarded
IFLR 1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms, 2020, 2019, 2018