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The Legal 500 > Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


1. After research takes place, how are law firm rankings determined?

Rankings are determined after an in-depth annual research process. Ranking criteria are as follows:

Primary factors:

  • Recent work (past 12 months)
  • Historical track record (typically the past 3-5 years)

Secondary factors:

  • Breadth of practice area coverage
  • Breadth of industry sector coverage
  • Depth and experience of team / changes to team
  • Client and other referee feedback
  • Ancillary services
  • Significant market/economic developments
  • Your law firm benchmarked against the competition

These factors may vary in importance, depending on the practice area and/or country in question; track record of work is the most important factor.

2. Where can we find the submission guidelines for each Legal 500 guide?

Please click HERE to view the submission guidelines for each guide.

3. We have an active practice in an area that is not currently a Legal 500 category. Should we provide a submission for it anyway?

No. The list of sections has been finalised for the 2015 edition, and no additional sections will be added without notifying all firms potentially affected. Firms are advised to look at the published list of categories, and include the information as part of a submission for the category which closest fits the practice concerned.

4. We think you should introduce a new editorial category/country. Do you accept suggestions, and if so who should we contact?

We aim to structure the editorial in a way that reflects the market, and do keep the editorial categories under review. If you have suggestions for editions you should contact

Please provide the following:

a) compile a mini submission for the law firm to show some of its clients, the range of its work, and a handful of examples from each of the past two years

b) identify other key law firm competitors in the jurisdiction (while this means we might end up ranking them, it gives us a pointer as to who else we can approach about their interest in adding a chapter)

c) contact other law firms in the jurisdiction that you know to be interested in a Legal 500 and encourage those law firms to contact us as well giving their take on why.

5. Our firm is not currently recommended in the editorial of Legal 500, but we believe we warrant a recommendation. What should we do next?

The editorial research is based on firms’ written editorial submissions, and follow-up research with firms and their referees. The first step is therefore to provide us with a written editorial submission. If the submission deadline has passed, see question below relating to late submissions.

Please refer to the editorial submission guidelines for details of the information we ask for. You should provide a separate submission for each practice area for which you believe your firm warrants a recommendation.

6. We are currently recommended in the Legal 500. Do we need to continue to provide editorial submissions in order to retain our ranking?

Yes. We do take into account a firm’s track record in a particular area, but the editorial research is conducted afresh each year.

7. If we send firm and partner sales profiles, do we also need to send an editorial submission?

Yes. Editorial researchers do not see the sales profiles provided by firms. The editorial research is independent of the sales process and different information is needed.

8. We confirm that there are no costs attached to taking part in our research process, or to any resulting rankings.

No. The list of sections has been finalised for the 2015 edition, and no additional sections will be added without notifying all firms potentially affected. Firms are advised to look at the published list of categories, and include the information as part of a submission for the category which closest fits the practice concerned.

9. Can we include our referees within our editorial submission documents?

No. Any referees that are submitted to us within a submission document, rather than within a referee spreadsheet template, will not be contacted by us. Referee spreadsheet template can be found on the same page as the submissions guidelines for each of the Legal 500 guides.

10. Can we submit editorial submissions for multiple practice areas/countries in one Word document?

No, please ensure that all countries and all practice areas are submitted to the portal within separate Word or PDF documents.

11. We are not going to be able to meet the editorial submission deadline. Do you accept late submissions?

Our research deadlines are fixed. Late practice area submissions may impact on the time our team can spend researching your firm and late client referees may not be contacted. Please ensure your submissions are returned on or before the stated deadline.

12. We have submitted our editorial submissions but we have included incorrect information/need to update information. What should we do?

Please email if you need to update your submission. We are able to revert the submission back to draft so firms can edit and resubmit

13. When do you publish the details of the researchers for the next edition?

We publish details of which researcher is covering which area, along with contact details, shortly after the relevant submission deadline has passed. They will be posted on the Legal 500 website HERE.

14. Do the researchers interview all firms who provide a submission for a particular practice area? Do we need to do anything to ensure a follow-up interview?

We do our best to present a fair and accurate picture of the market, but we do not undertake to speak to all firms across all practice areas for which they have provided a submission. In some cases the researcher will have sufficient information from the written submission and references. If not, the researcher will make contact with the firm to arrange a follow-up interview. If you feel strongly that you want a follow-up interview, then you should (once the submission deadline has passed) email the relevant researcher to request one.

15. Does the Legal 500 provide rankings before the date of publication?

The Legal 500 will only reveal rankings upon the specified date of publication for each guide.

16. There is a factual error within a Legal 500 guide. We are aware that it is too late for the hard copy publication, but can you amend the error in the online version?

We will amend any factual errors online. If you are aware of a factual error, please contact

17. We would like to view historical rankings for our firm, is this possible?

Please go to to view the process for requesting historical data (we only provide the rankings for our current guides online).

18. When I search for our firm online, we see a blank page headed with our firm name, despite knowing that we have been ranked. Why is this?

Only firms that purchase a profile with us will have a microsite (a page in which all of their rankings and editorials can be accessed together). In light of this, any firms that do not have a profile with us will need to go through our rankings manually online or in the hard copy of the guide to locate your firm’s rankings.


Submitting firms should use our templates, which can be found on our guidelines page HERE. We do not accept any other format for referees. Client references sent to us in different formats may not be contacted.

We ask that you submit as many client referees as you can, and recommend at least 20 referees per practice area we can contact in confidence.

Please find specific instructions for client referee submission set out by edition on our guidelines page HERE.


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