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Practice Area Definitions: UK

Below are the legal practice area definitions and regional variations used by Chambers to rank lawyers and law firms in the UK Guide.

Please note that the term “section” refers to a practice area that constitutes a chapter heading in the Chambers UK guide. A “subtable” is a specific table of rankings that exist within a section. Both terms are used throughout these definitions.

Administrative & Public Law 


This section covers judicial review, statutory appeals, disciplinary proceedings and non-contentious advice on the powers and administrative functions of central and local government, and other public and regulatory bodies. It includes matters relating to competitive tendering, public procurement, environmental issues and employment and discrimination law.  
Firms are ranked for their representation of ‘Mainly Commercial’ clients, ‘Mainly Public Sector & Charities’ clients and ‘Traditional Claimant’ clients. The claimant table highlights firms who represent individuals and organisations in public law challenges that are not privately funded. Firms can be listed in more than one of these sections. 
Individuals are recognised either under the main Administrative & Public Law ranking table or the Administrative & Public Law: Traditional Claimant table. 
Related sections: Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Local Government, Parliamentary & Public Affairs 

Agriculture & Rural Affairs 

This section ranks law firms and lawyers who specialise in advising landowners, farmers and other rural businesses on relevant legal issues, including property matters, estate management and niche areas such as equine and bloodstock law. 
Related sections: Private Wealth Law (in the HNW guide), Real Estate, Real Estate Litigation 

Art and Cultural Property 

This section covers a wide range of contentious and non-contentious work where art or other cultural property is the subject matter, and matters relating more generally to the art world. Work for collectors, dealers, auction houses, museums and galleries is included. We also consider work for artists and their estates. 

Asset Finance 

This section covers lawyers who advise on finance linked to the purchase or construction of a distinct asset or set of assets (typically ships, aircraft or rolling stock).  
Firms and individuals are ranked under the three subtables: Aviation Finance, Rail Finance and Shipping Finance. Firms can provide a separate submission and referee spreadsheet to each subtable. 
Aviation Finance: This subtable focuses on firms and individuals acting for clients such as leasing companies, banks, airlines and other financial institutions. This section covers financing, including ECA’s, EETC’s and government-supported financings. It includes bankruptcy, operating leases, including JOLCOs, as well as financing of commercial aircrafts, corporate jets and helicopters.   
Rail Finance: This subtable recognises firms and individuals representing clients such as rolling stock lessors, banks and train operating companies. Work in this section spans rolling stock financing deals for ROSCOs, rolling stock franchising, train procurement and leasing structures.  
Shipping Finance: This subtable ranks firms and individuals acting on behalf of shipyards, owners, operators and financial institutions. The work in this section covers financing structure, including asset sales, structured securitisations, and sale and leasebacks. It also includes operational and technical issues. Areas of expertise include offshore, yacht, cruise and LNG sectors. 
Related sections: Aviation, Banking & Finance, Shipping, Transport  


This section covers a broad range of work carried out by lawyers for clients in aviation and related industries. Specialists in this sector are ranked across the subtables below: 
Insurance: Covers all insurance coverage disputes concerning the aviation industry. 
Regulatory: Covers lawyers with specialist expertise concerning the regulation of the aviation industry including proceedings involving the European Commission, UK Civil Aviation Authority, UK Office of Fair Trading and ABTA.  
Dispute Resolution: Covers non-insurance related disputes concerning the activities of aviation sector entities. 
Commercial: Covers lawyers with expertise in non-contentious commercial matters specifically relating to the aviation industry. 
Claimant: Covers lawyers who assist victims and their families in claims arising from both commercial and non-commercial aviation accidents.  
Related sections: Asset Finance, Commercial and Corporate Litigation, Insurance 

Banking & Finance 

This section covers advice provided to borrowers, sponsors and lenders (both traditional banks and private credit). Chambers UK considers a broad array of banking work for its purposes, with areas looked at including acquisition finance, syndicated lending, leveraged finance, ESG-linked financing, private credit, Islamic finance and refinancing. Outside of London, we will also consider Real Estate Finance work (London has a dedicated Real Estate Finance table). 
In London, firms are ranked in Lower Mid-Market, Mid-Market or Big-Ticket tables for their work for Borrowers and Lenders (A deal with a value of up to £99 million will be considered lower mid-market, a deal with a value between £100 - £499 million will be considered mid-market and any deal £500 million or above will be considered big-ticket). We also rank firms for their work representing sponsors and for their Fund Finance expertise. Additionally, there is a spotlight table that recognises individuals who specialise in Islamic Finance. 
The Banking & Finance tables do not cover Asset Finance, Restructuring & Insolvency, Capital Markets, or Financial Services work as these are covered by other sections. Furthermore, we won’t consider any contentious work as this is covered by a Banking Litigation table. 
Related sections: Asset Finance, Banking Litigation, Capital Markets, Financial Services, Real Estate Finance, Restructuring/Insolvency 

Banking Litigation 

This section principally focuses on litigation related to commercial banking activities. Types of matters include claims for the mis-selling of financial products, professional negligence, breaches of warranty, civil fraud and matters arising out of bank failures and state bailouts. All work should be on behalf of banks and other financial institutions, not individuals. For example, the defence of negligence claims against individual bank employees or financial advisers should be submitted to Professional Negligence. 
Our UK-wide section includes a 'Mainly Claimant' subtable, which highlights those firms that focus primarily on bringing claims against banks on behalf of individuals and companies. For both this and the main table you will still submit under the main heading of Banking Litigation. 
Regulatory investigations and enforcement in the banking sector may be included here however please note we have a separate Financial Services section for this as well. Work regarding sanctions can either be submitted to Financial Services or to the Sanctions table, please do not include it here. 
Related sections: Financial Crime, Financial Services, Fraud: Civil, Professional Negligence, Sanctions 

Capital Markets 

This section covers advice on the raising of funds on the capital markets. Our coverage is subdivided due to the UK market's high degree of specialisation. Firms can provide a submission for each of the following: 
Capital Markets: Equity: In these sections we recognise teams that assist clients in the raising of equity capital. Advice on Main Market IPOs is highly rated but we also consider rights issues, private placements or IPOs on foreign exchanges. Firms may also advise on SPAC IPOs (Advice on acquisitions should be included on a Corp/M&A submission). Clients include corporate issuers and investment banks.  
We don’t consider advice on AIM listings in this table and work of that type should be included on a Capital Markets: AIM submission. Similarly, we won’t consider work relating to listed funds as this is covered elsewhere. 
Capital Markets: AIM: This table features firms which advise on listing on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange. We favour work on AIM IPOs, but will also consider other listings. M&A work involving AIM listed companies should not be included on a submission to this section.  
Capital Markets: Debt: In this section we recognise teams that assists clients with matters relating to the issuance of investment-grade debt. Common types of work include stand alone corporate and sovereign bond issuances, debt programmes, green bonds, liability management and equity linked bonds. Work for underwriting banks and corporate and sovereign issuers is favoured, however we also accept work for trustees. Work relating to high yield bonds should be submitted to that practice area and won’t be considered here. 
Capital Markets: High Yield Bonds: This section covers advice on a full range of issues relating to non-investment grade bonds. Firms can act for sponsors, issuers or investment banks. Work can include stand alone issuances, sustainability-linked or green issuances, or issuances in the context of wider financings. 
Work relating to investment grade issuances won’t be considered here. 
Capital Markets: Structured Products & Derivatives: Firms can provide one submission containing 20 work highlights and 20 referees covering both Structured Products & Derivatives. We will then use the information from our interviews, and from those submissions to rank teams and lawyers in separate tables. 

Structured Products: Encompasses wide range of deal types including repackagings, synthetic securitisations and risk transfer. 

Derivatives: Includes regulatory and transactional legal advice regarding derivatives products such as: exchange-traded derivatives, OTC derivatives, securitised derivatives, interest rate, currency, equity, credit and commodity-linked products. Law firms advise on product development and regulation, structuring and documentation of transactions, related tax issues and derivatives litigation. Work involving derivatives related to physical commodities isn’t considered here. 
Capital Markets: Securitisation: Covers the entire range of asset classes, including residential and commercial mortgages, consumer loans, auto-loans and receivables. We also consider whole business securitisations and covered bonds. CLO work should also be included on a securitisation submission, for consideration in the CLO subtable. 
Related sections: Banking & Finance, Commodities, Energy & Natural Resources, Investment Funds, Private Equity, Tax 


This section ranks law firms and lawyers who advise third sector clients on all types of contentious and non-contentious matters, ranging from sector-specific advice on constitutional and governance issues or public benefit requirements, to more general advice on corporate, property, employment and tax issues. 
The Legacy Disputes subtable recognises those who represent charities in disputes surrounding legacies left in a will. Please note, we do not accept work on behalf of individuals challenging legacies as this is covered in Private Wealth Disputes, a section in our High Net Worth guide. 

Civil Liberties & Human Rights 

This section covers issues relating to the Human Rights Act 1998 and the European Convention on Human Rights. It includes a Prison Law subtable, which highlights firms that specialise in prisoners' rights. The section also includes a spotlight table that recognises lawyers and law firms who represent clients on international human rights issues. 
Related sections: Administrative & Public Law, Immigration, Police Law 

Clinical Negligence 

This section covers allegations of negligent acts committed by professionals working in the healthcare or pharmaceutical sectors. These cases usually arise from accusations that the defendants did not follow accepted industry practices, leading to injury or death to the patient or claimant. 
The section is divided between those who represent the defendants or their employers and those who bring claims on behalf of individuals seeking compensation for their injuries. 
Related sections: Court of Protection, Insurance, Personal Injury, Professional Discipline. 

Commercial and Corporate Litigation 

This section ranks firms and lawyers advising businesses, high net worth individuals and other non-public sector entities on contractual litigation and other disputes related to commercial agreements. It also covers corporate litigation, including post-M&A disputes, corporate control issues, joint venture disputes and shareholder disputes. This section focuses on courtroom litigation, rather than alternative dispute resolution methods like mediation and arbitration. 
Contentious work that is well-catered for by other sections of the UK Solicitors guide should not be submitted here. This includes regulatory investigations or enforcement actions, such as those matters covered in the Competition Law, Financial Services, Health & Safety or Professional Discipline sections. It also does not cover public law work, such as those matters covered in the Administrative & Public Law, Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Local Government or Public Procurement sections. Criminal investigations and prosecutions should not be submitted, nor should private client work including contentious probate cases. In essence, all matters should have at their core a civil dispute over a commercial agreement or a corporate transaction/relationship. 
Other areas given less weight here include civil fraud, banking litigation, real estate litigation, contentious insolvency and tax disputes. International arbitration is covered extensively elsewhere and should also not be submitted. 
This is a London only section. For similar work in other parts of the UK, please submit to our regional Litigation sections. 
Related sections: Banking Litigation, Fraud: Civil, Group Litigation: Claimant, International Arbitration, Litigation 

Commercial Contracts 

This section covers practices which assist clients with agreements relating to the establishment and development of commercial activities between non-public sector entities. It primarily looks at co-operation agreements to carry out commercial activities, including ongoing supply, agency, distribution or manufacturing agreements relating to trading activities and commercial strategies, as well as joint ventures. Such agreements can be either domestic or cross-border in nature. 
Please note that IT services and IT-driven outsourcing contracts are considered separately under Information Technology & Outsourcing. However, outsourcing arrangements that are not IT-driven, such as legal services, property and maintenance, and other business process contracting arrangements are considered here. Supply and service agreements involving public sector bodies are considered separately in Public Procurement. 
Related Sections: Franchising, Hotels & Leisure, Information Technology & Outsourcing, Public Procurement 


This section covers the regulation and trade of commodities, and any related litigation. It does not typically include investing in a company that will eventually produce a commodity (eg investing in a coal mine) unless a clear link to commodities trading can be demonstrated. It is split into three subtables: 
Derivatives & Energy Trading: This covers advice on commodities derivatives transactions and regulations, including trading relating to energy units such as electricity, gas, coal and oil. 
Trade Finance: This covers prepayment financing, receivables, structured commodity finance and export credit financing. 
Physicals: This covers disputes concerning the direct trade in commodities and related matters. Practitioners advise on a range of both 'soft' and 'hard' commodities, from cash crops to coal, metals, oil and gas. Typical clients include commodities trading houses, export credit agencies, financial institutions, freighters and insurers. 
Related sections: Capital Markets, Energy & Natural Resources, Insurance, Shipping  


This section encompasses contentious and non-contentious matters arising under EU, domestic and international competition law, including cartels, abuse of a dominant market position, state aid and merger control. Please note that criminal cartel defence is considered under Financial Crime and public procurement work is considered under Public Procurement. 
Related sections: Corporate/M&A, Financial Crime, Group Litigation: Claimant, Public Procurement 


Our construction sections cover legal advice provided to a range of industry clients, including both suppliers, such as developers, contractors, engineers and architects, and purchasers employing these types of companies.  
We ask firms to showcase non-contentious and contentious matters. Non-contentious work can include contract negotiations and procurement strategy. Contentious matters we look for include claims arising from defects, such as cladding and fire safety disputes, delays and terminated contracts. We also consider development work here. We’re looking for firms/individuals who advise on the construction aspects of these developments, which can include single commercial blocks, as well as multi-building residential developments. Real Estate work, including land acquisition, option agreements and the sale of developments should be submitted to Real Estate. Planning work, including planning applications for the developments, should be submitted to Planning. 
Alongside our regional construction tables, we also recognise firms and lawyers in London in two separate subtables, Construction: Contentious and Construction: Non-contentious. Firms and lawyers wishing to be considered for our dedicated Construction: International Arbitration – UK-wide table should include submissions as part of their submission to Construction – London (Firms).   
Related sections: Environment, International Arbitration, Planning, Projects, Real Estate 

Consumer Finance 

The Consumer Finance section recognises firms and lawyers who advise clients that provide credit for personal or household use. Often, this will involve advice on regulatory or compliance issues relating to credit cards, business loans, personal loans, overdrafts, mortgages, point of sale financing, motor financing, hire purchase, buy now pay later products and peer to peer lending. It can also include transactional or disputes work involving consumer finance clients. Typical clients include banks, fintech companies, leasing companies, motor finance providers and mortgage providers. 
Related sections: Banking Litigation, Financial Services, Retail 


This section covers both public and private company transactions. Typically, the most prestigious work here will involve advising the buyer or seller on an acquisition. Advising either of the main parties on a merger is considered strong work. Throughout, the size and complexity of the deal will be relevant. Advising parties that are not the buyer or a seller on a deal (ie advising the financial adviser) is relevant, but generally not as desirable as advising the key parties. 
Other forms of corporate work considered here include share acquisitions, dispositions, capitalisations, entity selection and formation, operating and partnership agreements, and governance matters. Also accepted here are transactions designed to help restructuring within companies and their subsidiaries by change of ownership. 
Some tables will have a monetary value attached to them, such as “£100-800 million”. In those tables the bulk of the best work demonstrated by these firms will fall into that range, but it is not necessary for all of it to. Some examples of work that falls below the range, yet are still complicated or interesting, are accepted. It is also expected that some firms ranked in a lower range will have a small number of outlying deals in the higher range. 
Related sections: Capital Markets, Investment Funds, Private Equity, Partnership, Tax 

Court of Protection 

This section covers all advice relating to the proceedings of the Court of Protection concerning individuals who are considered to have lost the capacity to make their own decisions according to the Mental Capacity Act. 
Court proceedings relate to the management of an individual's property and financial affairs, or their health and welfare, with the individual represented by those with Lasting Power of Attorney, Enduring Power of Attorney, or by an individual appointed by the Court as a deputy.    
Related sections: Clinical Negligence, Healthcare, Personal Injury 


This section focuses exclusively on the representation of individuals in general and serious crime cases. Representative matters include charges related to violent and sexual assault, the illegal drugs trade, homicide and terrorism as well as work concerning organised crime activity, such as people trafficking and modern slavery cases. You may also include appellate cases and matters relating to alleged miscarriages of justice. 
We will consider work at all levels, from initial police dealings and high street advisory matters all the way to the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights. Matters may be privately funded or undertaken on a legal aid basis. 
Please note that charges of fraud, money laundering and bribery are all considered in the Financial Crime section. Similarly, claims made concerning the conduct of serving police officers should be submitted to Police Law. We also have separate coverage for Extradition and Protest Law. All matters submitted here should also relate solely to the defence of individuals facing criminal charges – associated issues concerning civil liberties and human rights should be submitted to that section, where we also have a sub-table covering prison law. 
Related sections: Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Defamation/Reputation Management, Extradition, Financial Crime, Police Law, Protest Law 

Data Protection & Information Law 

This section covers all aspects of law surrounding the control of information by both public and private sector bodies. Many firms acting in this area advise clients on the development of binding corporate rules (BCRs) and other issues relating to international data transfers, consent compliance and contract support. 
Other areas of work include advising on responding to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, drafting privacy policies and guidance on evolving EU regulation in this area. Another significant type of work involves the defence of clients facing potential fines for data protection breaches and related investigations. 
Related sections: Information Technology, Financial Services, Media & Entertainment: Advertising & Marketing 

Defamation / Reputation Management 

This section ranks law firms and lawyers who handle defamation proceedings (i.e. libel and slander) on behalf of claimants and defendants, as well as advising media and corporate clients on risk management. Reputation management involves advising individuals and corporations on the legal aspects of protecting and regulating their reputation. 
Under the rubric of reputation management, we consider: work concerning data privacy, the publication of allegedly inaccurate data, and the so-called ‘right to be forgotten’ in online searches and business intelligence databases. Also, injunctions to remove client data from international websites to prevent harassment, taking down imposter social media sites and data audits to guard against media intrusion. 
Related sections: Media & Entertainment, Data Protection & Information Law 


This section is divided into Education: Individuals and Education: Institutions. In the UK-wide section, Education: Institutions is further split down into Schools and Higher & Further Education.  

Individuals: Covers lawyers and law firms who act on behalf of pupils and their parents in matters such as special educational needs (SEN), admissions and exclusions, disability discrimination claims, judicial review cases, disputes with private schools, and transport to school issues. The firms ranked here may undertake either privately or publicly funded work.  

Institutions (Schools): Covers lawyers and law firms who work on behalf of schools. This is a wide-ranging table covering the full range of school-related law, including pupil-related litigation and child protection issues, debt recovery, governance matters, school reorganisations, employment law, exclusions, policy and procedure reviews, and the establishment of academies.  

Education: Institutions (Higher & Further Education): Covers lawyers and law firms who work on behalf of universities, colleges and other higher education providers. The work can include constitutional and governance issues, employment matters, joint ventures between institutions, IP, student-related issues and litigation, data protection, governance, and charity law.  
Related sections: Local Government, Mental Health: Patients, Public Procurement 

Employee Share Schemes & Incentives 

Lawyers are ranked in this table for their expertise on employee benefits and share incentive plans. Work includes the creation, operation and governance of plans. We also recognise firms for their advice on the benefits and share plans aspects of corporate transactions. Firms that provide advice on Employee Ownership are recognisd in a separate subtable. 
Related sections: Employment, Pensions, Tax 


This section has a broad scope and firms can submit a wide range of workplace related matters, both contentious and non-contentious. 
In terms of disputes, work can include Employment Tribunal claims relating to discrimination, unfair dismissal, equal pay or employee status. It can also include litigation before the higher courts relating to team moves or restrictive covenant. Firms are also recognised for their advisory work on matters such as TUPE, redundancies, gig-economy matters, senior executive issues and policy and HR training. We also recognise firms for their employment work in the context of corporate transactions, however this work is viewed less favourably. 
Outside of London, firms can include work for both employers and employees/workers. In London, firms are ranked in separate subtables covering work for Employers, Employees & Trade Unions, and Senior Executives. The Senior Executive table covers advice for all-types of employed senior professionals (including those working in the financial services industry, senior doctors and head teachers). The Employee & Trade Union table is focused on work for more junior employees, as well as actions brought by employees in conjunction with Trade Unions. 
In London we have specific tables that recognise firms and individuals for their expertise acting for third sector employers and healthcare providers (both NHS and private), as well as for their employer-side industrial relations work. 
We don’t consider Partnership related issues as these are covered in a separate table. 
Related sections: Employee Share Schemes & Incentives; Pensions, Partnership 

Energy & Natural Resources 

This section focuses on corporate/commercial, regulatory and capital markets issues arising from the energy sector. These include the regulatory components of M&A and other transactional work, and pure regulatory work related to license applications and compliance.  
Firms and lawyers based in England and Wales have the option of providing two submissions and spreadsheets of client referees (comprised of 20 work highlights and 20 referees) to Energy & Natural Resources: Oil & Gas and Energy & Natural Resources: Power, Renewables & Alternative Energy.  
Firms can showcase disputes work across both submissions. Any Water-related work must be displayed on the Energy & Natural Resources: Power, Renewables & Alternative Energy submission. 

From the above submissions, we rank firms and lawyers across the following sub-sections:
Oil & Gas: The Oil & Gas sub-section covers all upstream, midstream and downstream work including exploration, infrastructure and pipeline developments, and service contracts, royalties, licensing and operation agreements. It also includes M&A transactions, capital raisings and regulatory compliance.  
Renewables & Alternative Energy: The Renewables & Alternative Energy sub-section recognises firms and lawyers with expertise in relation to the financing and development of renewable energy projects, as well as those handling corporate transactions and regulatory issues in the sector. Projects covered include, but are not limited to, both onshore and offshore windfarms, solar developments, biomass facilities and waste-to-energy plants. 
Power: The Power sub-section recognises firm and lawyers with expertise in relation to a range of energy assets, including nuclear power stations, gas-fired power stations (including combined cycle gas turbine plants), interconnector structures and battery storage facilities. Project development, corporate transactions and regulatory issues are all relevant in this sub-section.  
Water: This sub-section covers a variety of work relating to the water industry, including regulation, pricing and aspects of competition law.  
Disputes: This sub-section covers all disputes (including Litigation and International Arbitration) in the energy & natural resources sector.  
Alongside our UK-wide tables, we also have two Scottish tables, Energy & Natural Resources: Oil & Gas and Energy & Natural Resources: Renewables & Alternative Energy, as well as a general Energy & Natural Resources – Northern Ireland section.  
Mining: We also accept separate submissions and referee lists for the UK-wide - Energy & Natural Resources: Mining section. Lawyers are either recognised for their expertise in domestic or international work, while firms are ranked for their expertise on Mining matters regardless of the jurisdiction the work occurs in. The section focuses on legal matters surrounding the exploration, development and production of minerals through mining operations. The negotiation of royalty, streaming and supply agreements are relevant, as are M&A transactions, development financing, restructuring initiatives and regulatory issues.  
Related sections: Commodities, Environment, International Arbitration, Projects 


This section features environmental litigation, as well as advisory and transactional support for clients. 'Traditional' environment work includes regulatory compliance, litigation and enforcement actions related to air, water, wetlands, waste and endangered species. We also include advice to corporate and financial clients on the environmental aspects of M&A, financings, securities offerings and other transactions that involve due diligence and environmental insurance issues.  
There is also a UK-wide Environment: Claimant section which ranks firms and individuals, and Environment: Climate Change (UK-wide) which recognises individuals who advise on Climate Change work.  
Firms can provide separate submissions and referee spreadsheets to Environment, Environment: Climate Change and Environment: Claimant. 
The Environment: Climate Change section covers a range of regulatory, transactional and litigation work in a specific climate change context. Regulatory work such as compliance program design and implementation, as well as operational and project-related compliance advice is a central aspect of work in this area. This area also covers representation of clients in proceedings before domestic and foreign government panels, agencies and regulatory bodies, including handling rulemaking challenges. Climate change-related government relations and policy advice work is also covered here. Climate change litigation and carbon markets transactions are also important in this practice area. 
Related sections: Group Litigation: Claimant, Health & Safety, Planning, Real Estate 


This section ranks firms and lawyers on a UK-wide basis for their expertise in extradition law and procedure, as well as matters concerning European Arrest Warrants and Interpol Red Notices.  
Related sections: Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Crime, Financial Crime 


These sections deal with issues surrounding the inception and breakdown of personal relationships. This includes the creation of nuptial, civil partnership and cohabitation agreements relating to financial and property assets, the resolution of divorces or separations involving financial and property disputes, and the handling of matters relating to child custody, maintenance and welfare. 
Our London rankings cover finance and children work separately. The finance table ranks firms for both HNW and UHNW matters, with this research carried out by our HNW team. Please ensure all work submitted is within a family/matrimonial context and do not include more general wealth management matters: these may be submitted in their own right elsewhere in the HNW guide. 
Firms may then also submit separately to our Children Law table for private law matters where the primary concern is the placement and maintenance of child dependents. This includes a subtable entitled Children: Cross-Border Disputes which primarily covers international child abduction cases, along with issues surrounding international surrogacy and adoption.  
We also have a separate table entitled Public Law Matters which covers work such as children’s care proceedings and abuse in care claims. This table is on a UK-wide basis to allow specialists in this area from around the country to be recognised. 
In all regions outside of London, we take submissions only under the main Family/Matrimonial heading, which may include any/all of the kinds of work detailed above. Regional firms may, however, also submit separately to the UK-wide public children law table. 
In all parts of the UK we also have spotlight tables for individual practitioners who specialise in acting as arbitrators and mediators in family disputes. 
Related sections: Court of Protection, Private Wealth (in the HNW guide) 

Financial Crime 

The Financial Crime section encompasses a broad range of financial crime offences, including (but not limited to) fraud, bribery and money laundering. This section is exclusively focused on criminal investigations and proceedings: civil fraud matters continue to be considered under the separate Fraud: Civil section.  
Matters involving sanctions will now be considered within the Sanctions section and will no longer be considered here. 
In London our coverage is divided as follows (with separate submissions for each): 
Corporates: Ranks practices that represent corporate clients in all manner of financial crime matters and in the provision of relevant compliance advice. 
Individuals: Ranks practices that act for and advise individual clients in relation to the same issues as those outlined above. 
Private prosecutions: Ranks practices and lawyers who specialise in bringing private prosecutions. 
Submissions to The Regions and Scotland may include any/all of the above. 
Related sections: Banking Litigation, Crime, Financial Services, Fraud: Civil, Sanctions 

Financial Services 

This section covers contentious and non-contentious regulatory matters related to the financial services industry. On the contentious side, it encompasses Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) investigations, selling practices, market misconduct, misuse of confidential information and complaints handling regarding retail products. In this area, firms are recognised for their advice to both corporate clients and individuals. 
Non-contentious regulatory matters may include the implications of and interactions between UK, EU and US regulations, and compliance advice (including in relation to sanctions). Researchers will consider work on behalf of asset managers, banks, insurers, funds and alternative capital providers or any organisation governed by the FCA and/or PRA. 
The Payments Law subtable of the Financial Services section recognises those firms which advise on the procedures, regulation and technology required behind every purchase or cash withdrawal, drawing elements from practices such as financial services regulatory, consumer credit, IT and data protection and privacy. 
Related sections: Banking & Finance, Banking Litigation, Sanctions 


This section ranks law firms and lawyers advising franchisees and franchisors in respect of both transactional and contentious work, such as setting up franchise agreements, and disputes arising from such contracts. 
Related sections: Commercial Contracts, Retail 

Fraud: Civil 

This section ranks lawyers and firms advising on civil litigation and investigations concerning alleged fraud, along with asset tracing, recovery and injunctive relief including freezing orders. Clients may include companies, banks, trusts and high net worth individuals. We do not consider any criminal fraud work as this is instead covered by our Financial Crime section. 
Related sections: Banking Litigation, Commercial and Corporate Litigation, Financial Crime 


This table is for firms and departments that firms that specialise in the gaming/gambling area, which includes licensing matters as well as wider issues related to traditional and online gambling activities, including casinos. 
Related sections: Licensing 

Group Litigation: Claimant 

This section is for firms that have notable experience representing large claimant groups in group litigation. We will accept matters brought via group litigation orders, representative actions and collective actions before the Competition Appeal Tribunal. Work may include claims related to consumer protection issues, financial mis-selling, data breaches and environmental or product liability, among others. The table is solely for firms representing claimant groups, we will not accept defence work to the section. 
Related sections: Commercial and Corporate Litigation, Competition, Environment, Litigation, Product Liability 

Health & Safety 

This section ranks law firms that advise corporations, executives and regulatory bodies on contentious and non-contentious health and safety matters, including regulatory and criminal investigations, public inquests, compliance, and training. It has a broad remit, which encompasses general health and safety at work, food safety, fire safety and issues affecting the waste, utilities, nuclear, rail and other industries. 
Related sections: Insurance, Personal Injury 


This section covers a wide range of concerns faced by hospitals, public and private sector providers, medical institutions. Practitioners in this section may advise clients such as NHS Trusts, GP surgeries, pharmacies and elderly and social care providers, for example. Our coverage of individual practitioners is divided between three tables: Corporate/Commercial, Contentious and Regulatory. 
The Corporate/Commercial section includes general governance work, M&A, restructuring, procurement, and commercial contracts. The Contentious table includes treatment claims as well as Human Rights Act claims arising out of systemic negligence. It does not include clinical negligence or historic abuse claims. 
The Regulatory table includes practitioners working on all manner of regulatory matters, such as NICE and Cancer Drugs Fund issues. In this section you will also find listings for mental health law, for both patients and providers. 
Related sections: Life Sciences, Local Government, Mental Health, Partnership, Public Procurement  

Hotels & Leisure 

This section is industry specific, covering the full range of legal services carried out for clients involved in the hotels and leisure industry, ranging from hotels to restaurants and bars to casinos. The areas of legal advice that this section covers include real estate, hotel management agreements, franchising issues and branding.  
Related Sections: Franchising, Real Estate 


Chambers UK covers Business, Personal and Human Rights, Asylum and Detention related Immigration work. The UK guide does not consider work for high-net-worth individuals or family offices - work for those clients should be submitted to our High Net Worth guide. 
Business: Law firms featured in this section provide advice on all aspects of inbound and outbound immigration, such as work permits and visas, workforce mobility and other legislative and regulatory changes. Clients for this section will typically be companies and their sponsored staff, but may also include charities, education institutes and individual senior employees.  
Human Rights, Asylum & Deportation: This section covers both privately funded matters, as well as work funded by Legal Aid. It is focused on immigration issues that have human rights, asylum or deportation at their heart.  
Personal: This section covers privately funded personal immigration work. Clients will tend to be families, overstayers and people who’ve been refused indefinite leave to remain. 
Related sections: Administrative & Public Law, Civil Liberties & Human Rights 

Information Technology & Outsourcing 

This is primarily an industry-specific section focusing on firms and individuals advising technology-based businesses. Researchers consider legal advice given to suppliers and purchasers in relation to significant IT supply and services contracts. Work in this sector may include outsourcing and IT-driven business transformation projects, infrastructure projects and product launches, as well as litigation. We also consider early-stage investment, M&A, and share listings concerning emerging tech companies. 
Outsourcing arrangements that are not IT-driven, such as legal services, property and maintenance, and other business process contracting arrangements are now considered separately under the Commercial Contracts table. 
This definition also applies to UK regional Information Technology sections as well, although all of these except those for London and Scotland continue to be known as Information Technology: Name of region (East Anglia, Midlands etc.). 
Related sections: Commercial Contracts, Data Protection, Public Procurement, Telecommunications 


The Infrastructure UK-wide section ranks those firms and lawyers who advise on transactions relating primarily to projects that have already been completed and are operational. Infrastructure assets can include (but are not limited to) airports, ports, transmission lines, pipelines and (resources) storage. Secondary market transactions, where infrastructure is the underlying asset, form a crucial aspect of the work recognised, while equally, contract variation, asset management and other legal issues that arise over the course of the operation of an asset are also relevant. 
The Infrastructure PFI/PPP section is a separate sub-section which recognises those undertaking the aforementioned work primarily in the context of PFI/PPP projects. As well as assets structured on a PFI/PPP basis, other non-traditional models such as Regulated Asset Base (RAB), Mutual Investment Model (MIM), Local Improvement Finance Trust (LIFT) and Direct Procurement for Consumers (DPC) are relevant for this section. Submissions for this sub-section should be included in the Infrastructure UK-wide section and any work highlight relating to any project structured on a PFI/PPP (or similar) basis should be clearly labelled as relating to this type of asset.  
Any work relating to the financing and development of projects for any of the above assets should be included in a submission to Projects – UK-wide. 
Related sections: Projects 

Inquests and Public Inquiries 

The inquests spotlight table recognises lawyers who have deep expertise in representing clients in high-profile and contentious inquests. These inquests typically arise in the context of mental health, police contact and domestic terrorism, but are by no means limited to these areas. Lawyers ranked here represent bereaved families, organisations and individual staff members. 
The public inquiries spotlight table focuses on lawyers who act for a range of clients in connection with statutory inquiries. Clients of these lawyers include inquiry chairs, government witnesses and other core participants. At present, this table predominantly focuses on statutory inquiries, as opposed to independent reviews and non-statutory inquiries. 
Please note, firms are only expected to provide up to 10 matters for Inquests or Public Inquiries, or 20 for both on the same submission document. Submissions are provided under the heading of Inquests and Public Inquiries.  
Related sections: Administrative & Public Law, Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Police Law 


This is a UK-wide section ranking firms for both contentious and non-contentious work in the insurance sector. Firms may submit separately to each of the sections listed below. 
Contentious Claims & Reinsurance: This section covers contentious matters handled on behalf of the insurance industry, including claims defence, coverage disputes, brokers' negligence claims and reinsurance disputes.  
Mainly Policyholder: For firms handling similar work to the above on behalf of policyholders. It is possible for firms to be ranked in both this table and in Contentious Claims. 
Volume Claims: This table ranks firms (not individuals) that provide regular representation to insurance companies and other organisations on high-volume claims. This includes personal injury as well as employers', public and motor liability, among others. 
Non-contentious: Representative work here includes M&A transactions, business transfers, capital raisings and demutualisations, as well as alternative risk transfers, reinsurance transactions and insurance-linked securities. We also consider regulatory work, such as advice on the Solvency II directive. 
Firms in Scotland are ranked separately for Insurance. All work listed above may be included on a submission to the Scotland section. 
Related sections: Aviation, Clinical Negligence, Financial Services, Health & Safety, Personal Injury, Product Liability, Professional Negligence, Shipping  

Intellectual Property 

This section covers disputes related to patent, copyright and trademark infringement, litigation concerning trade secrets and related issues such as licensing, IP commercialisation and audits. A separate Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys ranking also features in this section, concerned with mark registration, registry proceedings, patent and trade mark searches and specialist IP advice to innovator companies and IP lawyers. 
Related sections: Information Technology, Life Sciences, Media & Entertainment 

International Arbitration 

International Arbitration is a UK-wide section that recognises firms and individuals’ expertise in international commercial and investor-state arbitrations. Individuals are ranked under International Arbitration and firms are ranked in the Commercial and Investor-state arbitration subtables. We also have a separate table recognising Arbitrators.  
Commercial Arbitration: This subtable focuses on firms representing clients in commercial international arbitration, a private and binding form of dispute resolution determined by an arbitrator or panel of arbitrators. These disputes are between companies who have international commercial contracts or agreements, which can arise from contractual breaches or terminations. Both institutional and ad hoc arbitrations will be considered under this subtable. 
Please note that commercial and corporate litigation is covered in its own submission. Any corporate litigation work, such as joint venture and shareholder disputes that are settled in Court will not be considered here.  
Investor-State Arbitration: This subtable focuses on firms representing clients in investment arbitrations, i.e. disputes arising between a sovereign state and an investor. This includes claims brought under bilateral or multilateral investment treaties, as well as those arising out of contractual agreements between an investing party and a sovereign state. ICSID, ad hoc and institutional arbitrations are all considered under this subtable. This table ranks firms which primarily represent investors, those which primarily represent states, and those which represent a mixture of the two.  
Arbitrators: This subtable features highly regarded non-barrister or non-practising barrister arbitrators based in the UK. A list of London-based barristers who are respected arbitrators features in the UK Bar guide, under the heading International Arbitration: Arbitrators.  
This table does not invite separate submissions, but examples of an individual's work as an arbitrator can be included on either/both of the submissions for Commercial Arbitration and Investor-State Arbitration.    
Submissions will only be accepted under the Commercial Arbitration and/or Investor-State Arbitration subcategories. It will not be possible to upload a general International Arbitration submission.  
Related sections: Commercial and Corporate Litigation, Litigation, Mediators, Public International Law 

Investment Funds 

In this section we recognise firms and individuals for their investment funds expertise. Firms can provide work relating to the entire life cycle of a fund, from formation to close although fund formation work is especially highly rated. A firm can upload separate submission for each of the following areas: Private Equity, Real Estate, Hedge Funds, Open-ended Funds and Closed-ended Listed Funds. 
We also have subtables which recognise expertise in Investor-side representation, Credit Funds, Venture Capital Funds and Secondaries. Those seeking recognition in these areas should include their work highlights on an Investment Fund: Private Equity submission. 
Work relating to private equity or real estate transactions isn’t considered here and should be included on a submission for either of those sections. Similarly, regulatory or compliance advice should be submitted to our Financial Services Regulatory section.  
Related sections: Capital Markets: Equity, Financial Service Regulatory, Private Equity, Real Estate 


This section ranks firms and lawyers advising on both contentious and non-contentious work related to licensing, including new licence applications, variations to existing licences and any related disputes or reviews. We also have a dedicated UK-wide Gaming table for those firms that specialise in this area, which includes licensing matters as well as wider issues related to traditional and online gambling activities. 
Related sections: Gaming 

Life Sciences 

This section focuses on the commercialisation of life sciences products (pharmaceuticals, medical devices and biotechnology programs etc) as well as the regulation of these products and the defence of product liability challenges. Patent litigation concerning life sciences products and technologies is also covered. 
Related sections: Intellectual Property 


In all regions outside of London, this section ranks firms and lawyers advising on civil litigation, primarily on behalf of businesses, financial institutions and other non-public sector entities. It also considers work on behalf of private individuals, albeit still within a business context: disputes concerning private wealth or probate should be submitted separately to the HNW guide.  
The core focus of this section is contractual litigation and litigation arising out of corporate and commercial arrangements, including shareholder, joint venture, post-M&A and boardroom disputes. Banking litigation and civil fraud disputes may also be included.  
Other litigation types will be given less weight if they are covered on a regional basis in their own right: this includes sections such as professional negligence, real estate litigation, construction and IP. Matters concerning the public sector, such as judicial reviews and procurement challenges, are also covered elsewhere and will generally not be considered here. Other kinds of work not considered as part of the section include criminal litigation, inquests, public inquiries, tribunals, regulatory investigations and related enforcement actions. 
This section focuses on courtroom litigation, rather than ADR methods such as mediation and arbitration. In particular, International Arbitration is covered extensively elsewhere and so should not be included on a submission to Litigation. 
This applies to regional sections only. Firms in London should refer instead to the definition for Commercial and Corporate Litigation. 
Related sections: Banking Litigation, Commercial and Corporate Litigation, Fraud: Civil, Group Litigation: Claimant, International Arbitration, Litigation, Mediators, Private Wealth Disputes (in the HNW guide) 

Local Government 

This section ranks lawyers and law firms who advise on local government issues, including planning, environment, education, community care, highways, housing, health, compulsory purchase, public procurement, freedom of information, rating, licensing and elections. 
Related sections: Administrative & Public Law, Parliamentary & Public Affairs, Planning, Projects, Public Procurement 

Media & Entertainment 

The section caters to clients in the media industry in respect of contentious and non-contentious matters. We rank firms by specialist expertise in subtables for Film & Television, Advertising & Marketing, Music, Theatre, Publishing and Gaming and Social Media. Individuals are ranked relative to one another by specialism. 
Non-contentious work as covered by this section may include production, financing and distribution concerns, as well as IP, licensing and supplementary rights planning. 
Types of disputes in this area are many, and may include copyright and contractual litigation (eg on behalf of studios, producers, publishing houses or talent), matters arising from film finance, comparative advertising and ASA disputes. 
Please note that defamation actions are not considered in our publishing rankings; please submit such matters to the Defamation/Reputation Management section. The Publishing rankings do however consider matters concerning pre-publication clearance, reporting restrictions and press regulation. 
Related sections: Defamation/Reputation Management 


This section ranks the UK's leading mediators. All are successful resolvers of disputes. Only individuals are ranked, not organisations. 
For submissions to this section, we advise using the Bar submission template – there is a separate sole practitioner template for mediators submitting on an individual basis.  
Related sections: Commercial and Corporate Litigation, Litigation 

Mental Health: Providers

This section covers the provision of advice to the providers of mental health services, such as the NHS and private care providers. A client could also be another non-patient stakeholder, such as a national body or an investor. Work considered here includes regulatory compliance, investigations and judicial reviews. Although Chambers does have separate categories for Inquests and Health and Safety, such work is also covered here, as are tribunals. Please note that this section does not include clinical negligence or historic abuse claims. 


Mental Health: Patients

This section covers the provision of advice to mental health patients on issues such as deprivation of liberty and mental capacity. It covers advice that pertains to legislation such as the Mental Health Act and the Mental Capacity Act. Although Chambers does have separate category for Court of Protection, such work can also be included here. Please note that this section does not include clinical negligence or historic abuse claims. 


We rank individuals based on the Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey across a range of different areas including Corporate, Investment Funds, Property and Employment. Firms/individuals are recognised for their advice on the Isle of Man/Jersey/Guernsey aspects of transactions, as well as for their advice on local matters. 
We also recognise London-based lawyers who have specific expertise on matters relating to Bermuda, BVI and Cayman Islands. Lawyers in these tables are ranked for their expertise in a range of disciplines. 
Related sections: Capital Markets, Corporate/M&A, Investment Funds, Real Estate, Restructuring & Insolvency, Private Equity 

Parliamentary & Public Affairs 

This section has three tables: Electoral Law, Parliamentary Agency and Public Affairs.  
Electoral Law includes advice on local and parliamentary elections, rules relating to the conduct of Members of Parliament and the legislative reform of electoral law.  
Parliamentary Agency ranks lawyers and law firms who advise on political process and the drafting or opposing of Private Bills. 
Public Affairs covers those involved in campaigning and lobbying, and media relations. 
Related sections: Local Government, Planning, Public Procurement 


This section ranks firms advising primarily professional services clients - such as architects, surveyors, accountants and lawyers - on both contentious and non-contentious work. 
Representative non-contentious matters include M&A transactions, LLP conversions and the creation of partnership vehicles for corporate or investment purposes. It also includes advice on establishing overseas offices, the drafting of partnership agreements and regulatory matters. Contentious work includes disputes regarding partner exits and team moves, remuneration and retirement issues and investigations into discrimination and harassment.  
We also feature a separate table for those specialising in the representation of medical partnerships, including GP, dental and veterinary surgeries. 
Work submitted to this section should relate specifically to partnership law. For instance, employment law matters more generally are not to be included if they do not relate specifically to partners within a firm. Similarly, medical matters should relate to the creation and operation of medical partnerships themselves; more general work in the healthcare sphere should not be submitted. 
Related sections: Corporate/M&A, Employment, Healthcare, Investment Funds, Professional Discipline, Professional Negligence 


This section ranks lawyers who provide non-contentious advice on pensions issues for employers, schemes, fund managers, trustees and the state. Issues looked at are varied, but may include pension liabilities, debt restructuring, scheme mergers and demergers, investment management, risk transfer and funding negotiations. 
Related sections: Employee Share Schemes & Incentives, Professional Negligence, Pensions Litigation 

Pensions Litigation 

This section ranks law firms and lawyers who advise on a wide range of contentious issues concerning pensions, including rectification claims, recoveries in the event of insolvency, determinations of liabilities, judicial review and allegations of wrongdoing. 
Related sections: Professional Negligence, Pensions 

Personal Injury 

This section covers the full scope of litigation arising from injuries sustained outside of a clinical context. This includes litigation arising from workplace accidents, motor accidents, abuse claims and industrial disease. 
Certain niche areas of international work are also covered by this section, such as injuries and abuse resulting from wars and corporate negligence, although purely travel-related injuries are covered in a separate section entitled Travel: International Personal Injury, within the Travel section of the guide. 
Related sections: Clinical Negligence, Court of Protection, Insurance, Travel 


This section covers the area of law relating to the processes of planning applications for the development, construction or change of use of a building or buildings; compulsory purchase orders (CPO); and s106 agreements.  
The work in this section can be contentious – for example, judicial reviews, inquiries and appeals; and non-contentious – for example, planning and CPO strategies relating to development projects and urban regeneration schemes. 
Related sections: Environment, Local Government, Real Estate 

POCA Work & Asset Forfeiture 

This section ranked firms and individuals who advise on all aspects of the proceeds of crime, from restraint and receivership to confiscation, and concerns recovery in both the criminal and civil court. 

Police Law 

This section is split into Mainly Claimant and Mainly Defendant sections. Mainly Claimant covers actions and judicial review proceedings against the police, the IPCC and coroners, including issues relating to unlawful arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution, treatment in custody and inquests. Mainly Defendant focuses on lawyers and law firms who defend police forces against matters of the type listed above. 
Related sections: Administrative & Public Law, Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Crime 

Private Equity 

Buyouts includes firms and lawyers that advise private equity companies on the purchase or disposal of their investments. Beyond this, secondary transactions and advice to management teams are included.  
High-end Capability focuses on firms operating at the top of the market and regularly act on deals worth at around £400 million and over (though please bear in mind that this amount can change from year to year, depending on market conditions). Mid-market contains firms that more regularly act on deals in the £50-400 million range, as well as firms that focus more closely on secondary deals, or providing advice to management teams. 
Venture Capital Investment covers advice on investments into venture capital targets. 
Related sections: Capital Markets, Corporate/M&A, Investment Funds 

Product Liability 

This section encompasses legal claims that allow an injured party to recover financial compensation from the manufacturer or seller of a product. Examples include faulty brakes, contaminated food and medicine lacking appropriate label warnings.  
Please note that litigation concerning pharmaceuticals and medical devices which are tortiously flawed, in of the products themselves, is treated in the Life Sciences section, not in this one. 
Law firms advise manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, retailers and others who make the product available to the public. 
It also covers toxic tort, relating to the exposure to chemicals or similar occupational hazards. Firms and individuals are ranked in subtables covering Food, Mainly Claimant and Mainly Defendant. 
Related sections: Insurance, Life Sciences, Personal Injury 

Professional Discipline 

This section ranks firms and lawyers who advise individuals, corporations or professional bodies in relation to professional regulatory matters, including fitness-to-practice investigations, disciplinary proceedings and the development of codes of practice. Matters most frequently concern medical, legal and financial professionals, however work concerning any individual regulated by a professional body may qualify. 
Related sections: Education, Employment, Healthcare, Partnership, Professional Negligence 

Professional Negligence 

This section covers firms and lawyers which specialise in disputes arising over loss suffered as a result of negligent advice given by professionals. A wide range of professionals are covered, including architects, surveyors, financial advisers, insurance brokers and solicitors or barristers. 
In London, we have a separate table which recognises firms and individuals for their expertise on negligence claims relating to technology and construction professionals. 
We don’t accept work involving medical professionals as these are covered in our Clinical Negligence tables. 
Related sections: Construction, Insurance, Professional Discipline 


The Projects UK-wide section ranks those firms and lawyers who advise on the financing, refinancing, development and expansion of large projects that arise from the capital intensive infrastructure and energy markets. Projects covered include, but are not limited to, transmission lines, pipelines, resources storage, telecommunications infrastructure, airports, ports and bridges, as well as various types of social infrastructure assets, including hospitals, schools, housing, roads and rail developments. 
The Projects PFI/PPP section is a separate sub-section which recognises those undertaking the aforementioned work primarily in the context of PFI/PPP projects. As well as assets structured on a PFI/PPP basis, other non-traditional models such as Regulated Asset Base (RAB), Mutual Investment Model (MIM), Local Improvement Finance Trust (LIFT) and Direct Procurement for Consumers (DPC) are relevant for this section. Submissions for this sub-section should be included in the Projects UK-wide section and any work highlight relating to any project structured on a PFI/PPP (or similar) basis should be clearly labelled as relating to this type of asset. 
Any work relating to the acquisition and development of infrastructure projects, or the variation and management of completed projects, should be included in a submission to Infrastructure – UK-wide. 
Related sections: Banking & Finance, Construction, Energy & Natural Resources, Infrastructure 

Protest Law 

This section covers cases involving the right to protest. Cases considered under this practice area include criminal cases involving protestors who are facing prosecution or sentence, as well as civil matters such as injunctions to prevent occupations, judicial reviews of state actions to prevent protest, or civil claims for protesters who have been wrongly treated by state bodies. 
Related sections: Administrative & Public Law, Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Crime 

Public International Law 

This section covers state-to-state disputes such as those governed by the law of nations and the law of the sea, as well as by international agreements and conventions. It includes matters traditionally held to constitute the core of public international law practices, such as land and maritime boundary disputes, sovereign immunity, state succession and claims to statehood. Investment arbitrations are also covered in this section (as well as in International Arbitration: Investor-State Arbitration) but should not make up the majority of any submissions in this area. Matters relating to Business and Human Rights issues are covered in the International Human Rights section. 
Related sections: International Arbitration, International Human Rights, Sanctions 

Public Procurement 

This section ranks law firms and lawyers who advise corporations and government bodies on the acquisition of goods or services by governmental entities. Challenges to tenders awarded by procuring authorities are also treated here. Areas covered may include education, healthcare, social housing, transport and infrastructure.  
Related sections: Education, Healthcare, Information Technology, Projects, Transport,  

Real Estate 


This section covers all aspects of non-contentious real estate work relating to both commercial and residential property, including investment transactions, development, corporate structuring, acquisitions, portfolio management, and landlord and tenant matters. We consider work done on behalf of institutional landlords, property companies, developers and commercial tenants, as well as private landlords and tenants.  
In London, firms are subdivided into three tables by average transaction value as follows: £150 million and above, £50-150 million, £10-50 million. 
We also subdivide certain regional sections into two tables for firms handling work up to £10 million and those where work is more commonly £10 million and above. In all cases, you will still upload your submission via the main Real Estate heading, it is not possible to provide a separate submission for any of the subtables 
Please note that we do not accept real estate finance work within this practice area: such work should instead be submitted to the Real Estate Finance section, or you may also include it on submissions to Banking & Finance sections in regions excluding London. Similarly, contentious property work should be submitted to the one of our Real Estate Litigation sections. Submissions also should not contain matters that exclusively concern planning law or construction. 
Related sections: Agriculture & Rural Affairs, Construction, Environment, Hotels & Leisure, Planning, Real Estate Finance, Real Estate Litigation, Social Housing 

Real Estate Finance 

This section covers advice on the spectrum of debt products, structured products and CMBS, loan origination, restructuring and refinancing transactions, loan portfolio sales and purchases. Researchers look at work on behalf of banks, private equity funds and other non-bank lenders, as well as investors. 
Related sections: Banking & Finance, Capital Markets, Real Estate 

Real Estate Litigation 

These sections rank firms and lawyers advising on contentious property issues for landlords, landowners and tenants. The section covers development disputes, including those regarding rights of way, boundary lines, rights to light and party walls, as well as contentious landlord and tenant work including rent reviews, lease terminations and dilapidations claims. We primarily consider work concerning commercial real estate assets, however development disputes affecting residential property can also be included. 
Disputes regarding planning law or construction contracts should not be submitted here, but to the appropriate Planning or Construction section. 
Related sections: Construction, Environment, Litigation, Planning, Real Estate, Social Housing 


This section covers work on behalf of creditors, debtors, bondholders and insolvency practitioners.  Work examples may include debt restructuring, formal insolvency procedures, contingency planning, debtor advisory work and insolvency disputes. In additional to corporate work, we also recognise those firms and individuals that advise on personal insolvency in a stand alone ranking table. 
Related sections: Banking & Finance, Capital Markets. 


This is an industry-focused section ranking law firms that have developed a track record in serving the needs of large, national retailers. A retailer sells goods (not services) to consumers online or in person. Please note that any work for brands (drinks, toiletries etc) should be clearly linked to the sale of those brands to the consumer. Advice on IP to a consumer brand that is not a retailer is not considered here. 
Firms may also advise retailers on their real estate and planning needs, as well as logistics, franchising and technology matters. They may also demonstrate aptitude in assisting with a retailer's employment, tax and regulatory requirements, along with consumer protection issues and disputes. Please note that we do not rank individuals in this table. 
Related sections: Franchising, Hotels & Leisure, Real Estate 


This section recognises the expertise of law firms and lawyers who represent clients in litigation challenging international sanctions designations imposed by the UK, EU and UN - both for individuals and corporates. It also covers advisory work related to corporates on the impact of sanctions imposed on countries. Matters involving breaches of sanctions will be considered here as opposed to the Financial Crime section. 
Please note: advising financial institutions on compliance with international sanctions may also be included under the Financial Services section.  
Related sections: Commercial and Corporate Litigation, Financial Crime, Financial Services, Fraud: Civil  


This section covers both contentious and non-contentious work. The contentious side involves breaches of charter-party disputes, cargo and bills of lading claims, the arrest of vessels and cargoes, marine insurance claims, collision, salvage and environmental liabilities. On the non-contentious side, law firms advise on contractual arrangements for construction, registration of vessels, customs and licensing, and documentation relating to charter-parties and bills of lading.  
Related sections: Construction, Insurance 

Social Housing 

This section covers lawyers who act for either the providers or consumers of social housing. This can comprise corporate work, such as governance and joint ventures including housing stock transfers, antisocial behaviour matters, construction or redevelopment financing, property issues, or defending social housing tenants against legal proceedings brought by the providers.  
We also rank law firms which focus exclusively on financing of social housing developments and those who solely represent social housing tenants. 
Related sections: Construction, Local Government, Projects, Public Procurement, Real Estate, Real Estate Finance, Real Estate Litigation 


This section ranks the firms and lawyers that demonstrate stand out expertise in the sports sector. Regulatory work for sports organizations and governing bodies is highly rated, as is commercial work, when it is related to the sport in question. We may consider work for non-sports clients who are active in the sector, however such work will be given less weight. We won’t consider non-sports work involving sportspeople. For example, family law or reputation management issues for sports clients shouldn’t be included on a sports submission. 
We also recognise firms which specialise in horse racing & equestrian law in a specialist table. 
Related sections: Intellectual Property, Media & Entertainment 



This section covers a broad range of work relating to the tax efficient structuring of business operations, assets or transactions. Among other areas, we recognise teams for their tax advisory work as well as for their advice in relation to M&A and financing transactions, fund structuring and real estate related tax issues. In London, we rank individuals for their general tax expertise, as well those who specialise in Investment Funds, Real Estate and VAT. 
We don’t consider disputes work in this section. Disputes work should be included on a Contentious Tax submission. 
Related sections: Corporate/M&A, Capital Markets, Employee Share Schemes & Incentives, Investment Funds, Tax: Contentious, Tax: Contentious: Fraud 

Tax: Contentious 

We cover tax disputes in this table and recognise firms defending clients in actions brought by HMRC relating to VAT, PAYE and NI contributions, among other areas of taxation. 

Tax: Contentious: Fraud 

In this section we recognise those firms that defend clients accused of committing tax fraud. 


This section relates to matters concerning telecommunications companies and their activities, and covers contentious and non-contentious work spanning transactional, regulatory and competition matters concerning telecommunications companies. 
Clients may include telephone service providers, ISPs, wireless operators, TV and/or radio broadcasters and a range of government and regulatory bodies. Examples of work include spectrum auctions, procurement agreements and M&A, as well as contractual disputes, investigations and compliance proceedings. 
Mobile telephony patent litigation is not covered in this section; work highlights of this kind should be submitted under Intellectual Property. 
Related sections: Corporate / M&A; Outsourcing; Intellectual Property; Information Technology 


This section is subdivided into Logistics, Rail and Road sections. 
Logistics: Covers all work relating to disputes and issues arising from the commercial transportation of goods,  including multi-modal transportation. 
Rail: is further divided into four subsections: Rolling Stock relates to advice on all transactions concerning the procurement, leasing and maintenance of rolling stock. Projects & Infrastructure includes all work concerning projects relating to the development of rail infrastructure, including routes, stations and depots. This covers financing, commercial contracts, joint ventures, PFI / PPP, construction and real estate. Franchising covers all work concerning the rail franchising system, including bids and mobilisations, migrations and open access rights. Planning & Authorisation covers advice on planning and parliamentary procedures concerning new routes, stations and depots, including related environmental impact assessments and consultations. 
Road (Regulatory): Covers advice relating to the actions of regulatory bodies, including public inquiries, operator licensing, compliance and due diligence. 
Related sections: Asset Finance, Local Government, Planning, Projects 


This section is focused on a range of legal issues affecting the travel industry. Rankings for both firms and lawyers are split into three separate subtables. 
The Travel: International Personal Injury (Claimant) table focuses on firms and lawyers specialising in representing individuals pursuing overseas accident claims, including those involving catastrophic injury, severe illness, fatality cases and terrorist attacks. 
Similarly, the Travel: International Personal Injury (Defendant) subtable focuses on firms and lawyers involved in defending insurers, travel companies and tour operators against these claims. 
Finally, the Travel: Regulatory & Commercial subtable recognises firms and individuals providing advice on a range of sector-specific matters. Work covered includes advice to tour operators, travel agencies and other key businesses operating in the travel sector on various regulatory matters, with a particular focus on the Package Travel Regulations and ATOL Regulations. Legal advice involving a broad array of commercial operational matters for such businesses are also relevant in this sub-section. 

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