Facebook has moved to block referral of its Irish privacy case to Europe's top court, a lawyer for the US tech giant said today.

The company is seeking to avoid a potential ban on the legal instrument it uses to transfer users' data to the US. 

Paul Gallagher told the High Court here that Facebook was seeking a stay on the court's referral of the case to the Court of Justice of the European Union to give the Supreme Court time to decide if it would hear an appeal. 

The High Court this month ordered the case to be referred to the EU's top court for a detailed assessment of whether the methods used for data transfers - including standard contractual clauses and the Privacy Shield agreement - were legal.