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The Legal 500 United Kingdom
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The Legal 500 UK 2016/17 edition (covering solicitors and barristers) and The Legal 500 Latin America 2016 edition have been safely packed off to the printers after a mammoth effort by staff here and at many hundreds of law firms and sets. As ever, we're very grateful to every lawyer, BD or marketing person involved in the research processes, as well as the well over 100,000 referees that we contacted for these two books. The Latin America guide publishes online and in print on 7 September, with the UK edition following on 14 September; both will be available and free to view at


UK 2016 update

by Alexander Boyes | 11th July 2016

UK research is complete and I'm currently in the throes of putting together all the researchers' hard work in readiness of the publication of the next edition, so this will be a short note from me. First of all, I'd like to thank everybody (clients and law firms alike) for taking part in the research process this year -- you play an invaluable role in enabling us to gain a valuable insight into the current shape of the market. Secondly, while the research into the forthcoming edition has only recently concluded, I'm already turning my attention to next year's research -- if you have any suggestions as to new practice areas/changes to existing practice areas that you feel would be of use, please send a note to addressing the following points:

  • the practice area/s you would like to see being introduced
  • the parameters of the practice area/s as you would see it
  • the reasons why you feel these new sections are merited
  • 4 or 5 highlights of this type of work which your law firm has handled in the past 12 months
  • a list of other law firms which are also active in this practice area (usefully including relevant contact details, in case we wish to contact them for their view too)

Once the editing has been completed and the book is ready to head to the presses, I'll be starting to plan a series of trips around the UK -- stay tuned to future newsletters, my Twitter feed and the Legal 500 UK Solicitors homepage for more details.



by MIKE NASH | 23rd JUNE 2016 has some interesting stats and key interviews on diversity and inclusivity in the law, courtesy of our colleagues in our company's GC Magazine and Client Intelligence teams - a free read that is worth dipping into - see here.



by Alexander Boyes | 30th March 2016

Research into the UK regions is winding down and the researchers are putting the finishing touches on their coverage before moving on to other projects. I want to thank everybody – solicitors, clients and business development/marketing teams – that has participated in the research process; your co-operation is a vital part of our research process. The UK edition publishes on 14 September 2016 – in the interim, we’ll be have our heads down editing and fact checking, and would welcome updates on significant lawyer moves or changes to the team to ensure our coverage reflects key market developments. We can take into account lawyer hires or departures for the purposes of our next edition if they are supplied to us by 18 July 2016; if you let us know after that date, we can make an update to our online coverage to reflect the change.

Let us know via



by Alexander Boyes | 30th March 2016

Details of researchers and the London, PATMA and mediators sections they will be covering will be published on our website on 4 April – check back here for details at that time.

One of the questions we receive regarding the research process is whether every firm is interviewed. Often an interview isn’t necessary – particularly if a firm has supplied us with a detailed and thorough submission that follows our editorial guidelines. However, if you feel an interview with a researcher to cover any additional information not addressed in the editorial submission, firms are encouraged to contact researchers at the start of the research process. Researchers have a fairly tight window within which they have to conduct their research, and interviews have to be scheduled based on demand and availability, and are typically arranged on a first-come, first-served basis.



by Mike Nash | 16th March 2016

If you are a business development or marketing team member at a law firm or set of chambers, The Legal 500 Newsletter is a useful monthly email that is sent to alert you to upcoming research deadlines, publications or editor visits to markets - it's not a marketing email and recipients are only added upon request; if you don't find the content to be useful, you can be removed at any time. We thoroughly recommend that you do sign up for the newsletter if you don't already receive it. You can request to be added to the mailing list via



by Alexander Boyes | 2nd March 2016

This is just a brief reminder that the deadline for London editorial submissions and referees is 4 March.

Referees: if you've not been able to send referees yet, you may still submit late referees until 18 march (inclusive). Please send them to Spreadsheets can be obtained from the research info page at

Written submissions: The deadline for these is 4 March. Please send them to Spreadsheets can be obtained from the research info page at

Thank you to all law firms that have (or will have) made submissions.



by Alexander Boyes | 3rd February 2016

No doubt many of you are beavering away getting your editorial submissions and client referee spreadsheets ready in advance of the impending deadline this Friday 5 February. I’d like to thank all of those firms for their contribution and participation this year – your co-operation is key to our research process.

Referees: if you've not been able to send referees yet, you may still submit late referees until 19 February (inclusive). Please send them to Spreadsheets can be obtained from the research info page at Late referees will be treated differently to those that are supplied by the 5 February deadline. Any referees received between midnight on Friday 5 February 2016 and midnight on 19 February 2016 will be contacted only if that individual has not already been submitted in a spreadsheet by any firm before midnight on Friday 5 February 2016. This is to help ensure that referees do not receive multiple emails from us.

Written submissions: The deadline for these is 10 August. Please send them to Spreadsheets can be obtained from the research info page at

Researcher contact details will be made available online on Monday 8 February. Some researchers will be available to contact straight away regarding arranging interviews/following up on submissions, however some will be completing existing assignments, so do bear that in mind when getting in touch.

Regional trips/follow-up interviews will be carried out between 15 February and 18 March. Face-to-face meetings with researchers during their regional visits are always in high demand, and will typically be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. If you would like to schedule a face-to-face meeting with the researchers, make sure you get in touch early to register your interest.



by Ella Marshall | 27th January 2016

Well, I’ve just returned to the office after three days spent in Manchester meeting with firms – my thanks to all I met for generously giving up their time to accommodate my visit. While having frequently heard the expression “Northern Powerhouse”, I admit to having been rather sceptical until I experienced the revival of the city for myself (I’m something of a “doubting Thomas” I’m afraid). Over the last few years, the Manchester market has changed considerably: the influx of London-centric firms and demise of several traditional Manchester institutions has combined with a healthy smattering of national and regional firms and independent boutiques focusing on servicing clients in the SME sector.

The city has hardly been out of the headlines in the last few months, and not just because of van Gaal’s haircut (strikingly similar to Kim Jong Un’s barnet) and calamitous reign at Manchester United (dour football maybe but manna from heaven for the press). What with the expected arrival of HS2 in 2033; George Osborne, MP for nearby Tatton flying the flag as chief cheerleader (picture that!) for the city; and the visit of the Chinese premier in October of last year. All of this indicates a city on an upward trajectory, which is mirrored by the palpable sense of enthusiasm and buzz about the place – quite literally, due to the drilling accompanying the construction of the city’s new tram line – which is infectious.

This is seemingly an opportune time for firms in Manchester. To quote the most iconic band to come out of the city, you’ve just got to “Roll with it”, but not necessarily take your time.



by Alexander Boyes | 14th January 2016

I am pleased to say I will be visiting, in an editorial capacity, Bristol between 19 and 21 January to meet firms and discuss the current rankings of The Legal 500 UK. I will also be more than happy to answer any questions about The Legal 500 research process and submission best practices. I have a few slots left open so if you are interested in setting up a meeting please do not hesitate to get in touch. Please note that the research period for the upcoming edition of The Legal 500 UK will start on 15 February and the relevant researcher(s) will be in touch shortly after to organise research interviews.



by Alexander Boyes | 12th January 2016

At The Legal 500, we place a strong emphasis on getting out and meeting law firms face to face in order to answer questions and give advice and tips on the research process. So, ahead of the upcoming research into The Legal 500 UK 2016 (details of the submission process and deadlines can be found on our website) I will be travelling to Scotland to meet with firms during the week of the 25th January. I will be spending three days in Edinburgh, then travelling to Glasgow on the evening of the 27th and spending the remaining two days in Glasgow. If you would like to schedule a meeting, please do get in touch. Scotland’s legal marketplace has undergone significant change since I last visited it as a researcher, so it will be interesting to get the views of law firms on the ground while I’m there.

In addition to my Scotland trip, our deputy editors, Ella Marshall and Jonathan Armstrong, will be travelling to Manchester and Bristol during the week of 18th January. If your firm would like to schedule a meeting during either of those visits, feel free to get in touch with them.

Stay tuned for information on further visits throughout the year.



by Ella Marshall | 12th January 2016

After ending last year with a trip to “God’s Own County” (and yes – there may well be more than a little bias there) to meet with firms in Leeds, I am starting this year’s meetings on the other side of the Pennines – in Manchester to be precise. My dates have now been confirmed and I will be in Manchester from the 20th to the 22nd of January. Please do get in contact if you would like to schedule a meeting; I will be more than happy to answer any questions about The Legal 500 research process and submission best practice.



by Alexander Boyes | 5th January 2016

It’s 2016, and I’ve been ensconced in my new role as Editor of The Legal 500 UK – Solicitors for two days, so what better time to put my head above the parapet to introduce myself. I look forward to reconnecting with those of you who I have worked with in my previous role as Editor of The Legal 500 Asia Pacific, and working with those of you that I have yet to meet for the first time.

The Legal 500 UK has a long and storied history of covering the UK legal marketplace, and with that comes a significant weight of expectation. Going forward, I will be aiming to continue to uphold our tradition of high-quality insight and analysis, while exploring ways in which our research can continue to reflect the evolving legal landscape across the UK. It’s an exciting time to be covering the UK legal market – newly emergent business models and structures are creating interesting avenues for growth for UK’s law firms, and London remains a strategic hub for international firms. As such, there has never been a more diverse and competitive range of law firms vying for a foothold.

Over the coming months, and throughout the research period (which kicks off for the regions, Wales, Northern Ireland and offshore Britain on the 15th February, and for London, PATMA and mediators on the 4th April – see here for more information), I will be meeting with firms across the UK to discuss key market developments, obtain feedback from them on our research and answer any questions regarding our research methodology. If you are interested in arranging a meeting, or would like to learn more about the research process, do get in touch. Look out for more information on upcoming trips around the UK to be conducted by me and our deputy editors soon.

Happy new year – I look forward to working with you all.



by Ella Marshall | 9th December 2015

As some of you may be aware, I will be travelling up North in little under a week's time to meet with firms in Leeds – a city I know well as a former Loiner (so no excuse for not being able to find my way around the place!). I will be in Leeds from the 15th to the 17th of December, so please do let me know if you would like to arrange a meeting.



by Mike Nash | 7th December 2015

Deputy editor Ella Marshall will be in Leeds next week to meet with law firms to discuss the firm, the market and upcoming research for The Legal 500 UK. Ella has a few available times remaining (though they're going faster than a good Yorkshire pud!), so get in touch via



by Mike Nash | 24th November 2015

Early next year, we will be starting research for the 2016/2017 version of The Legal 500 United Kingdom, which will be the book's 29th annual edition. As such, the editorial submission guidelines for the regional and London chapters are available now here. Broadly speaking, the timeframe is very similar to last year - at a glance, here are the deadlines:


Client referees deadline: 5 February 2016

Editorial submission deadline: 5 February 2016

Firm interviews conducted: 15 February 2016 - 18 March 2016


Client referees deadline: 4 March 2016

Editorial submission deadline: 4 March 2016

Firm interviews conducted: 4 April 2016 - 13 May 2016


Client referees deadline: 4 March 2016

Editorial submission deadline: 4 March 2016

Firm interviews conducted: 4 April 2016 - 13 May 2016

PUBLICATION OF THE LEGAL 500 UK 2016/2017 EDITION - September 2016

If you have any questions or would like guidance, please email us at and we'll be happy to assist.



by Mike Nash | 17th November 2015

The Legal 500 United Kingdom is approaching its 29th edition as we draw close to 2016 and we are delighted to announce the appointment of Alexander Boyes as the new Editor of The Legal 500 UK - Solicitors. Alex will be returning to the company, as of 4 January 2016, having spent time in the communications team at a renowned global law firm; eager students of Legalease's staff history will recall that Alex previously worked at Legalease as editor of the Asia Pacific edition. The move comes after John Read left the company due to family circumstances; John made a strong contribution to the team and product during his time here and we wish him and his family well. Alex and deputies will be out and about visiting law firms around the UK from early 2016 - more details in due course.

Mike Nash
Chief Editor - The Legal 500 Series



by John Read | 23rd October 2015

Now that the dust is settling on the 2015 edition, like painting the Forth Bridge, thoughts turn to the schedule for 2016. Submission guidelines for 2016 will be published in the week starting 16 November, along with deadlines - though these will be largely the same as 2015: start of February for regional and offshore firms, and those in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales; and start of March for London and PATMA firms.



by Mike Nash | 19th October 2015

Over the past couple of days I've been moonlighting as editor of The Legal 500 Caribbean, which also includes coverage of Bermuda. With the growing number of offshore structures being used as part of global strategy, it's well worth a look. The guide goes into production this week and will launch online here on 9 November.


2015 UK rankings now live

by John Read | 5th October 2015

I’m proud to say that the 2015 edition of The Legal 500 UK is now available to view at A tremendous amount of work has gone into this year’s guide, and I hope our readers find it informative and useful. The UK awards shortlists and winners are also live at Congratulations to all firms that were shortlisted, and particularly those that won! Our awards are decided on the basis of our comprehensive research for the new guide.

The UK legal market now offers more choice than ever, and this is reflected in the 2015 rankings, which have been freshened up across the board, with more movement than ever before.

Specialist firms with non-traditional business models are a credible alternative to the traditional, full-service powerhouses. In dispute resolution, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP, Stewarts Law LLP and Enyo Law LLP have all moved up the rankings. Employment boutique Brahams Dutt Badrick French LLP moves into tier one for senior executive work; tech- and media-focused Cooley LLP opened in London in January 2015; and international arbitration boutique Three Crowns LLP continues to rank highly.

In Scotland and Wales respectively, Brodies LLP and Capital Law LLP were the standout firms, demonstrating an expertise and quality of work that resulted in promotions in several practice areas. CMS’ 2014 merger with Scottish institution Dundas & Wilson saw the former consolidate its position in the upper tiers of many of the Scottish tables.

The UK firms with the most tier one rankings this year are, in descending order: Pinsent Masons LLP; Eversheds LLP; DLA Piper; Mills & Reeve LLP; and Addleshaw Goddard LLP. For “London” firms, the top five are Clifford Chance LLP; Allen & Overy LLP; Linklaters LLP; CMS; and Herbert Smith Freehills LLP. Looking at the number of leading individuals, Eversheds LLP lead the way, followed by Linklaters LLP; Allen & Overy LLP; Clifford Chance LLP; and Pinsent Masons LLP.



by John Read | 5th October 2015

The Legal 500 series provides impartial opinion and analysis on thousands of law firms globally. Alongside helping general counsel to make decisions on which law firms might be the ones to instruct, or helping law firms seeking a referral partner, also serves a useful purpose alongside our sister publication – The Lex 100 – in helping students and new graduates to identify potential future employers that appeal to them. The latest edition of The Lex 100 is now live at The Lex 100. For a lighthearted, superheroic spin, click here to check out The Lex 100's 2015/16 fictional characters list.



by John Read | 8 September 2015

It's well worth noting the launch of The Client Intelligence Report 2015 (Twitter: #CIR2015 / @clientintel), a comprehensive investigational survey into the global legal market that includes the feedback of over 4,700 GCs and in-house respondents in 120 countries. The survey findings, which have now been launched, include responses from 82% of the FTSE 100 and 80% of the Fortune 100. The respondents provided approximately 2,000 hours of interview time to allow us to compile the largest ever legal survey.

The Legal 500's editors recently got a sneak preview of the data, which provided a mix of the interesting / enlightening / surprising alongside the reliably familiar - some matters that get a lot of media coverage are not so important to GCs, it seems; but the findings also in many ways support and substantiate the common refrain of client referees that respond to research for The Legal 500 Series each year (we contact 250,000+ during research each year). #CIR2015 is instructive stuff that is free to all the survey's participants and can be purchased by law firms.

To find out more, please click here.


The Legal 500 UK 2015 has been finalised

by John Read | 14th August 2015

I’m pleased to confirm that the 2015 edition of The Legal 500 UK has been finalised, and with the printers for…printing. Thank you to all the firms that participated in the process this year – in the regions and London, and from the rest of the UK and further afield. The new edition will be published, online and in print, on 16 September 2015 – when we will also announce the shortlists for The Legal 500 UK Awards 2015.

Now that editing on the new edition has finished, my attention will turn back to visiting firms – in particular in the regions – with Wales my next destination. Dates will be confirmed in due course, but if you would like to meet – wherever you’re based – please get in touch. I will also start thinking about planning next year’s guide, and welcome any constructive feedback on the structure of the guide, for example suggestions for new areas, or where an existing section could be revamped.


2015 UK guide update

by John Read | 10th July 2015

The bulk of the editing for The Legal 500 UK 2015 has been completed, and we're on the home stretch now! Thanks to everyone who participated this year, and for taking account of the revised submission guidelines. I have been rather quiet recently, having had an unscheduled trip to the operating theatre, but am getting back up to speed now, so normal service will resume. I will be visiting Wales either pre- or post-launch, so if you are a firm there and would like to say hello, please drop me a line and we can make arrangements -


UK Research Update

by John Read | 4th March 2015

After a few weeks away from the office for surgery, I'm pleased to be well and back at work again. Thank you to everyone who sent me their best wishes! Research on the regions, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is underway, with researchers carrying out interviews in person and by telephone. The deadline for submissions for London, PATMA and mediators is this Friday, 6 March 2015; we look forward to receiving your submissions. As always, if you have any general questions, please email You can also contact me directly at


Happy New Year

by John Read | 7th Jan 2015

I hope you all had a lovely festive period, and happy New Year. I'm back from annual leave now, so please do get in touch if you would like to meet, or if you have any questions about the new submission guidelines for 2015 - which are available here:


Submission guidelines for 2015 available now

by John Read | 8th Dec 2014

I’m pleased to confirm that the 2015 submission guidelines for solicitors are now available at As the new UK editor, I have substantially revised the guidelines this year, with the objective of providing more clarity about the information that we are looking for – and therefore place importance on – and more transparency about how we conduct our analysis. Please read through the submissions carefully and draft your submissions for 2015 accordingly.

The research timetable for 2015, including all deadlines, has also been published at the link above, along with all referee spreadsheets, and revised FAQs.

If you have any queries about the revised 2015 guidelines, or our research process in general, please email


Update on submission guidelines for the 2015 UK edition

by John Read | 27th Nov 2014

By way of update, the new submission guidelines for the 2015 UK edition will be published next week. They are in the process of being revised and updated, with the objective of being clearer about the information that we are looking for from firms - and therefore place importance on - and how we conduct our qualitative analysis for the rankings. The deadline for submissions for regional firms next year will be later than usual to reflect this: 6 February 2015.


2014 rankings available now

by John Read | 01st October 2014

The results are in! I'm pleased to confirm that The Legal 500 UK 2014 is published today, online and in print; I look forward to hearing your feedback on this year's rankings. The new guide is the result of many, many hours of hard work on the part of our research, administrative and production teams, as well as my fellow editors - particularly as I joined The Legal 500 late in the editorial cycle this year. However, there is no rest for the wicked; next up for me is writing the submission guidelines for the 2015 edition - these will be available in November.


Regional visit: Manchester

by John Read | 29th August 2014

My next regional trip will be to Manchester; from 9 to 12 September, I'll be visiting firms in the city to learn about their practices and the local market, and to provide an update on The Legal 500 UK. If you'd like to arrange a meeting, please let me know:


Signed off!

by John Read | 11th August 2014

Following a very long and hectic fortnight, I'm delighted to report that all editorial for this year's UK guide is signed off and with our production team! We look forward to sharing the results with you all in a month or so.


Editing and publication

by John Read | 24th July 2014

Editing is well underway on the 2014 edition of The Legal 500 UK. Thank you to all the firms taking part this year. Publication will be mid-September; we'll announce the exact date in due course.


Back from Norwich

by John Read | 17th July 2014

Thank you to all the firms who were generous enough to give up their time during my regional visit to Norwich recently - everyone made me feel very welcome. The trip was very useful (and the weather was lovely) - and I'll be staying in touch with you throughout the year. If you're a firm in Norwich that I didn't get to visit, but you'd like to have a chat, please do let me know and we'll set something up.


Regional visit: Norwich

by John Read | 25th June 2014

From 30 June to 3 July, I’ll be making my first regional visit as UK editor of The Legal 500, to Norwich. I already have a packed schedule, but if you’re a firm in Norwich and would like to meet, please drop me a line and we’ll sort something out – or 0207 396 5679.


Follow me on Twitter

by John Read | 25th June 2014

A short public service announcement: if you aren’t already, you can follow me on Twitter at @JR_Legal500. Advance warning: not all tweets will be law-related! (Most will.)


Users of The Legal 500 UK: Tell me what you think

by John Read | 25th June 2014

As well as meeting law firms, part of my role as the new editor of The Legal 500 UK is to meet with our target audience – buyers of legal services, notably general counsel and in-house lawyers – to discuss what they think of the guide, how they use it, and any changes they’d like to see. I want the UK guide to deliver the information that users need about the legal market, and we’re willing – and happy – to make changes to achieve that goal. If you use The Legal 500 UK – whether online or hard-copy – and would be happy to meet, please do get in touch at or on 0207 396 5679. You can also find me on Twitter at @JR_Legal500.


Your new UK editor

by John Read | 25th May 2014

Hello! I’m the new editor for The Legal 500 UK. You can read more about me HERE. Rather than just talk to law firms annually – around the time of the guide’s publication – I want to have a dialogue throughout the year, staying in regular touch. To that end, I want to visit as many firms as I can: to meet their key people; find out what’s going on in their businesses and the market; and discuss any issues Legal 500-related. I’ll be contacting firms directly, but if you’re a law firm and would like to meet, you don’t have to wait for me to get in touch: please contact me at or on 0207 396 5679. You can also find me on Twitter at @JR_Legal500.


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