Research forms and submission guidelines
Official submissions to IP STARS are made online through SurveyMonkey, using the research documents provided. On this page you will find the research documents you need to complete, links to our online submission portal, and basic submission guidelines.
The submission deadline for your research documents is October 31.
Firm Research Documents
Click here to download the firm questionnaire
Click here to download the client referees document*
*If you prefer to send your client referees later via email then please make sure you use our official Excel format document (click here to download it). Please include your firm's name and country when saving the spreadsheet (FirmName_Country_IPSTARSReferees) and send it before or on deadline day to firstname.lastname@example.org. See the research team's contact details here
Firm Submission Portal (opens on September 3)
Click here to submit the completed firm research documents**
**This is a password-protected portal. Please check the invitation email you received from us for the password and submission guidelines. If you wish to participate and have not yet received an email from us please contact email@example.com
Firm Submission Guidelines
The guidelines below must be read together with the information in our research forms and on our FAQs page and methodology page. Please also listen to our research webinar here.
Please make sure that all your research forms are correct and complete before you submit them. We cannot always guarantee that subsequent changes or amendments to what you first submitted will be considered or implemented.
Please include your firm’s name and country when saving your client referees document. The suggested labelling is FirmName_Country_IPSTARSReferees.
Submit your client referees document (Word format) through our online submission portal www.surveymonkey.com/r/IPSTARS2019 or, if you prefer, you can complete our Excel document and submit via email (see notes above).
You can provide as many referees as you want, but try to be selective. Ideally provide at least five referees. More is better.
You may lose ratings score if you do not provide client referees.
Please try to avoid giving us the same client referees that you have already submitted to the other legal directories in the same year.
Ensure the referees you provide are happy and willing to provide us with feedback before you submit your client referees document.
A 'referral' client referee is someone who works in a law firm/IP firm while a 'direct' client referee is anyone else who is outside a law firm/IP firm. A typical direct client referee is an in-house counsel.
Please make sure that all your client referees are correct and complete before you submit them.
Our aim is to contact referees between November and February. Unsuitable referees will be disregarded.
Please include your firm’s name and country when saving your firm questionnaire. The suggested labelling is FirmName_Country_IPSTARS2019.
Submit your firm questionnaire (Word format) through our online submissions portal www.surveymonkey.com/r/IPSTARS2019 (please do not send your firm questionnaire via email).
Use the official documents we have provided and fully complete them. You will impress the researchers by providing, where available, all the required information in the text fields for each case study.
You can add to your firm questionnaire the IP case studies that you sent to another legal directory this year. Please be mindful of the case study date range and the text fields we require. Read more about this on our FAQs page.
Each firm questionnaire must be about your firm’s work, practitioners and activities in a given country in which your firm wishes to be ranked.
Provide up to 15 recent case studies in each section, starting with the most important or significant ones. You can provide more case studies if you wish. We want to learn about all your recent case studies even if your client was on the losing side.
You will not lose ratings score for providing fewer than 15 case studies in each section.
You are allowed to include case studies concerning other IP-related areas; please use our case study template for these and ensure they are all under a separate section heading titled 'Other IP case studies'.
All case studies must be client work (ongoing or concluded) within the last 12 months, ideally work highlights from November 2017.
Do not worry if your client won or lost the matter. You are free to tell us about all the work you have done. We want to know whether your firm is truly active and, of course, the quality of advice given to clients.
Please do not delete any question or section in this document. If a question or section does not apply to your firm then please leave it blank.
Official submissions to IP STARS are made online through SurveyMonkey. Please do not send your firm questionnaire via email. You may, however, send the Excel version of our client referees spreadsheet via email.
Please make sure that all your research forms are correct and complete before you submit them.
Please write ‘(Confidential)’ in red next to any information that you wish to flag up as not for publication. Any information, especially client name or work description, not marked as such may be published. Furthermore, any information in the public domain may be published.
Providing client names which are not market confidential enhances your firm's credibility in the eyes of the researcher. However, we understand that this may not be possible for certain reasons.
The client names in your client referees document will be treated as strictly confidential and will not be published.
Section 1: About your firm
There are guidance notes in the firm questionnaire concerning questions 1(a) to (d). Please read them carefully.
1(a): Senior IP practitioners are those at partner level or equivalent.
1(b): Rising stars are practitioners that are below partner level or equivalent.
1(c): You may include partner or associate promotions under ‘Hires and departures’.
Keep your responses to question 1(d) concise, bearing in mind that we want to know about your firm’s IP capabilities and recent developments. Ensure that the information you provide in this section is specific to your firm’s IP practice.
We expect firms to use their judgement and keep to the word count limits. Please try to avoid providing information that is already on your website.
Word count limit
Rising star comments (question 1.b): no more than 100 words.
IP practice overview (question 1.d): no more than 1200 words.
IP filing and disputes statistics
You can provide an estimate on the number of IP rights that your firm advised or worked on in the last nine to 12 months. Please list them by IP right or practice area.
You may show evidence of your firm’s work by including direct weblinks to where this information can be found online.
IP disputes cover contentious work in the IP office and court. For example, for contentious IP office work you can provide the number of oppositions that your firm dealt with in the last 12 months.
Key IP clients
Please list your clients by IP area, e.g. patent clients, trade mark clients, copyright clients and so on, or by industry sector, e.g. pharmaceutical clients, mechanical engineering clients, electronics clients etc. Please also state whether they are new or long-standing clients.
It is not mandatory to list all your clients, but listing as many as possible (large or small clients) demonstrates the size and breadth of your practice.
Sections 2 - 6
General guidance notes on case studies
Fully complete all the applicable text fields because we use all that information during our vetting and research process. For example, it is in your firm’s best interests to state the client names and their industry sectors and the key senior and junior practitioners involved in each matter. We respect confidentiality so feel free to mark any client name confidential (see above).
After completing the text fields, provide a summary of the matter and your firm's work or role. If there is a cross-border element to the work then please mention this.
The last part of each case study is where you briefly explain the significance, impact and/or, if applicable, outcome of the matter. Remember we use the information in the case study section for the Managing IP awards and therefore if you believe a matter deserves recognition then it is best to tell us why here. More on awards below.
Case study word count limit
Summary of the work: no more than 100 words.
The significance, impact and/or outcome: no more than 400 words.
The firms and practitioners on the other side
Where relevant, it is advantageous to state the name(s) of the opposing firm(s) and lead practitioner(s) involved in each matter. It enhances your firm’s credibility.
The practice areas we consider
We consider contentious and non-contentious work, primarily focusing on patent, trade mark, copyright and design. Details of the type of work we evaluate can be found on our methodology page here.
Section 2: Patent work case studies
Please focus on patent (for US firms, 'utility patent') case studies in this section. You are also allowed to include other case studies concerning inventions including advice on patent protection extension such as supplementary protection certificate or an equivalent right.
Firms with strong life sciences practice may further provide case studies on regulatory matters such as data and market exclusivity rights.
Section 3: Trade mark work case studies
Please focus on trade mark and brand protection case studies in this section. You are also allowed to include other related case studies such as unfair competition (for example passing off), domain names, collective marks, certification marks and geographical indications.
Section 4: Copyright work case studies
You can include copyright as well as related rights (such as performers right and broadcasting right) case studies in this section.
Section 5: Design work case studies
This section is about registered and unregistered design work (for US firms, 'design patent').
Section 6: IP transaction work case studies
This section is about transactions work concerning any IP right.
Section 7: Managing IP Awards
The annual Managing IP Awards is the premier IP industry award programme which recognises achievements of firms and practitioners. The award shortlists and winners are published on our website www.managingip.com/Awards.
In this section you are required to nominate other firms for any of the awards (section 7a) before nominating your firm to win (see section 7b). To nominate your firm, you can simply mention any of your case study or case studies that you would like us to consider for any of our awards. In this section you are also given another opportunity to provide a very brief statement on why your firm deserves to win any of the awards. We would like to learn about your impact cases even if your client was on the losing side.
Please note: Our researchers will be impressed if you also nominate other firms to win any of the awards. You do not need to nominate other firms for all the award categories.
We have national and regional awards covering a range of IP areas. The categories are subject to change each year and we may present more categories based on the information obtained during the research period.
Below are the general guidelines for our main awards:
Impact Case of the Year: This is any IP case in the last 12 months that you strongly believe made, or will make, a big impact in the area of IP practice in question or industry sector. Impact cases are normally landmark court/tribunal or IP office decisions that clarified or changed law, rule or legal practice. You can also tell us about matters concerning uncommon court orders or remedies (e.g. substantial damages or injunctions) or cases that explored innovative or new arguments and law.
Firm of the Year: This is any firm, regardless of size, that you strongly believe has performed exceptionally well in the area of IP or IP work in question in the last 12 months. Nominees typically have a number of remarkable case studies but we may also consider other factors such as client care and matters not related to the case studies. The regional award category recognizes the firm’s overall achievements in IP in more than one country in the region in question.
IP Transactions/Deal of the Year: This is any sale, licensing or other business transaction involving IP which you strongly believe demonstrates a high level of sophistication and understanding of how to extract commercial value from IP. All IP-related agreements, regardless of monetary value, will be considered.
Best for Innovation/Technology: This is any firm that has developed and implemented creative and effective solutions to IP challenges, particularly through the use of technology.
In-House IP Team of the Year: This recognises collective, remarkable achievements by an in-house IP team in and outside work.
Individual Practitioner Survey (starts in December)
An email including a link to the online survey will be sent directly to the current IP stars. Other selected practitioners may be invited to participate.