Bird & Bird still rules UK IP roost

While Bird & Bird is still seen as the UK's top intellectual property practice, Linklaters & Paines has slipped from second place to fifth in an opinion poll of 3,000 practitioners worldwide.

The second annual survey by the journal Managing Intellectual Property also shows 25-partner firm Bristows Cooke Carpmael, which recently lost leading IP partner Avril Martindale to Freshfields, moving up to number two, while Simmons & Simmons has remained at number three for patent law.

The magazine sent questionnaires to in-house counsel and private practice lawyers around the world to draw up its tables. Unlike its first survey, the magazine rated firms in two separate tables – one for patent and the other in non-patent work.

Bird & Bird and Bristows topped both, while Eversheds came third in the table for non-patent work.

Jeremy Brown, head of Linklaters' IP department, said: “We see ourselves as being in the top five; whether we're number two or number five is fairly academic as long as we're getting the work.”

The exact rating depended on who exactly was asked, he added. The firm's six-strong Hong Kong IP team poached partner Rebecca Lo from Hastings & Co in July.