About us

Welcome to Managing Intellectual Property IP STARS, the leading specialist guide to IP law firms and practitioners worldwide. Managing IP has been researching and ranking firms since 1996. This research has expanded over the years, with more than 80 jurisdictions now covered, making it the most comprehensive and authoritative analysis of the industry.

IP STARS is not a directory of all firms offering IP services and therefore many firms and individuals, including those that participate in the research, are not ranked. Firms are ranked if all the available research information indicate they have the appropriate expertise and on the whole offer high quality services in IP.

Our research starts in September each year. Below you will find an overview of IP STARS and links to important information you need to know. Advice and answers to common questions can be found on our FAQs page.

There is no cost or fee to participate in our research. It is absolutely free. Click here to learn how to participate and why it is important to do so each year.

Key research dates

September: We start accepting firm submissions and conducting research including interviews.*
October 31: Firm questionnaire and client referees submission deadline (download the research forms here).
December: Survey of individual practitioners starts.
January 31: Individual practitioner survey closes.
February: End of research and the start of results publication.

*Please see our full research schedule here.

Click here for information about our research documents and submission portal. If your firm is not ranked and you would like to participate in our research then join the mailing list here or contact us.


The research for IP STARS (formerly IP Contacts Handbook and MIP Handbook) covers contentious and non-contentious IP work. It is carried out over a six-month period by an experienced team of research analysts and journalists in our offices in Hong Kong, London and New York.

Each year we obtain information from thousands of firms, IP practitioners and their clients through interviews, email and online surveys. Researchers also conduct their own independent research, which includes an analysis of publicly available information and existing data we hold. The aspects assessed for the firm rankings include expertise, workload, market reputation/track record, outcomes achieved for clients, and unique strengths in a given practice area. Judgements about which firms and individuals to list, and which tier and/or practice area they should be in, take account of all this information.

Our research is conducted rigorously and impartially: no firm or individual can pay to be ranked or to influence the results and there is no fee to pay to participate in the research. For the avoidance of doubt, the tables do not suggest that the services or expertise of the listed firms or individuals are limited to the practice area mentioned. Managing IP does not endorse any particular firm or individual.

To learn more please see our methodology and FAQs.

Firm rankings and editorials

We produce tables ranking firms in tiers or as “Recommended” or “Highly Recommended”. For most jurisdictions we have prosecution, contentious and copyright ranking tables. In others, we ranked firms for their IP practice as a whole. In the United States we also publish rankings for all 50 states plus the District of Columbia.

To contextualise the rankings, we provide editorial commentary on many ranked firms. The editorials highlight pertinent information about the firms, including key practitioners, available market feedback and recent developments.

The number of jurisdictions, practice areas, firms or individuals featured in IP STARS is subject to change each year.

The leading practitioners ('The IP stars')

The IP stars are private practice IP professionals who have been highly recommended by their peers and clients. We also publish two special lists: Corporate IP stars and Top 250 Women in IP.

Publication and distribution

IP STARS is available in print and online. The firm rankings are first published in Managing Intellectual Property magazine (online and in print) between February and April. Thereafter we publish three handbooks: the US edition, and the Trade Mark & Copyright and Patent (Global edition). Each handbook includes the rankings, our independent editorials on ranked firms, and a breakdown of the practice areas of the IP stars. See our publication schedule here.

IP STARS Handbooks are widely distributed. You can find copies at Managing IP events or any major industry events we attend such as the INTA Annual Meeting. The handbooks are also offered to those who participate in our research.

Using our content

You may quote from our editorial but please attribute as follows: ‘Managing Intellectual Property IP STARS or IP STARS [the year of publication]'. Please contact us if you need our our latest ranking logos or if you would like to discuss publishing or advertising opportunities. A ranked individual (IP star) or firm can publish their IP practice profile on this website and in the IP STARS Handbook. See a sample firm profile here and an IP star's profile here.

The rankings and editorials on this website are based on the information available when the research for the year was concluded. Subsequent developments or information concerning any firm or individual will be considered during the research for the next edition. We are happy to make appropriate and essential updates, particularly firm name changes.

Managing IP does not endorse or approve any particular firm or practitioner listed, nor will we have any liability in connection with the use of any listed firm or practitioner. Managing IP will not be liable for any damages or loss whatsoever, direct or indirect, arising from the use of or in connection with any content on this website or in the handbook. You must seek professional legal or financial advice and/or independently check the professional credentials of any firm or individual listed on this website.

By using this website you accept our terms and conditions. The contents, and arrangement thereof, on this website and in the handbook are protected by intellectual property and other related rights.

Links to information on this website

If you have further questions after reviewing the information on the pages below please contact us.

IP STARS methodology
IP STARS research deadlines
IP STARS research forms and guidelines
IP STARS research contacts

Corporate IP stars
Top 250 Women in IP
Managing IP Awards
IP STARS and Managing IP Media Kit