Our research


The IFLR1000 is the guide to the world's leading financial and corporate law firms and lawyers. Our first rankings were published in 1990 and we currently research over 120 jurisdictions worldwide.

We produce:

  • Law firm and lawyer rankings by practice area and jurisdiction
  • An online transaction database IFLR1000 Deal Data
  • News and features including analysis of market trends and law firm news
  • Reviews of law firm performance, including practice area, sector and geographical strengths, client and peer feedback and examples of transactional work


IFLR1000 researches and ranks law firms and lawyers on the basis of transactional advice. Each year we ask firms to provide annual submissions to support our research.

Each annual research process culminates in the publication of law firm rankings, individual lawyer ratings and firm editorial reviews.

There is no cost to participate in the research, or to be ranked.

The practice areas we produce rankings for vary by country, depending on the volume of work generally seen in a market.

To view which practice areas we produce rankings for in your jurisdiction, see our ranking tables by jurisdiction PDF.

To view the type of work that can be submitted for each practice area, see our practice area definitions PDF.

Please provide your details below to register your firm's interest in taking part in the 2020 research. We will email all registrants the 2020 research form and submission guidelines in January 2019.


The research incorporates the following core* practice areas:

  • Banking
  • Capital markets
  • M&A
  • Private equity
  • Project development
  • Project finance
  • Restructuring and insolvency

*We do not research these ranking categories in all jurisdictions. In some jurisdictions we also research competition, financial services regulatory, and investment funds.

Our journalists keep abreast of major developments (notable transactions and law firm news) throughout the year to inform their research.

If you have any relevant firm or deal news you wish us to consider for our research or online output, please contact the editor (bnaylor@iflr1000.com).

IFLR1000 2020 research timeline

  • Research begins: January 2019
  • Submission deadline: April 5, 2019*
  • New rankings and editorial published in print and online: November 2019

*We cannot guarantee referees submitted later than April 5, 2019 will be contacted.

If you need an extension to the initial submission deadline, please contact the editor (bnaylor@iflr1000.com). We cannot guarantee submissions received later than May 31, 2019 will be taken into account when determining the new rankings, or that these firms will receive editorial coverage in print or online.

Annual research submissions

If you work for a law firm that advises on transactional work relevant to the ranking categories we produce for your jurisdiction, you can participate in the research by completing the research form. Firms can submit one research form for each practice area category in its country.

To view which practice areas we produce rankings for in your jurisdiction, see our ranking tables by jurisdiction PDF.

The deadline for submissions for IFLR1000 2020 is April 5, 2019.

The research form asks for basic information on the structure and focus of the practice, recent changes to the team, and up to 20 highlight deals per practice area.

In the 2020 research cycle, highlight deals should be mandates which the firm has done substantial work on since January 1, 2018, or which closed after this date.

We also ask firms to submit client referees, who we contact as part of our research for their opinion on the performance of firms. Client referees must have worked with the firm in the 18 months prior to submission.


Firms can provide an unlimited number of client referees in support of submissions. All referees provided by the initial submission deadline (see above) will be contacted by e-mail to ask for feedback on firms' and lawyers’ work.

Ranking / rating criteria

Our law firm rankings and lawyer ratings are based on three key criteria:

Transactional evidence
In each research cycle we ask firms to provide transactional highlights from the previous 12 months.

Transactional evidence is the decisive factor we use to determine a firm’s ranking. For a firm to be ranked, it must a have track record of advising on transactional work relevant to our ranking categories. The same applies to the ratings of individuals; lawyers must have been working on significant deals in some capacity to be rated.

Primarily firms submit deals to us via the research form. Our research team also monitors daily deal news and updates to complement this.

We also analyse statistical evidence of transaction values and volumes produced by external publications.

Client feedback
We survey tens of thousands of corporate and in-house contacts provided to us participating firms, to get their opinions on the firms and lawyers they use.

Client feedback is used in support of transactional evidence when determining a firm’s ranking or lawyer’s rating. What this means is good feedback alone will not ensure a firm or lawyer is ranked or rated – a firm or individual must be experienced in advising on significant transactional work.

We ask for feedback on the following attributes:

  • Accessibility and communication
  • Client/lawyer relationship
  • Depth of team
  • International network
  • Technical ability
  • Value for money

Peer feedback
We conduct an annual Lawyer Survey of senior lawyers to get their thoughts and feedback on their markets. All senior lawyers active in the relevant research categories are invited to take part.

We also conduct a significant number of phone and face-to-face interviews with practitioners, where we ask for feedback on firms.

Peer feedback is secondary to client feedback and we only take this type of feedback into account where it is supported by deal evidence.

Leading Lawyers and Notable Practitioners

Alongside our firm rankings we also recognise the work of outstanding individuals. Our recommendations are based on the same three factors as our law firm rankings and consist of the following categories:

Expert Consultant
Senior figures with name recognition who focus on consulting and building client relationships.

Market Leader
True leaders of their field, these lawyers have a track record of high profile innovative deals and are recognised as the standout performers in their country or practice area.

Highly Regarded
Lawyers who are highly regarded by their peers and possess a strong transactional record and positive client feedback.

Rising Star
'Ones to watch' these are lawyers who are building their reputations in the market.

We also recognise lawyers who have advised on one or more deals featured in IFLR1000 Deal Data. These are categorised as Notable Practitioners.