Lightroom imports the metadata from the XMP files associated with the images you import. If your camera is saving them in a globalized format then Lightroom should be able to import them. You may use ExifTool to check how your Camera is saving the "rating" field.
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1. In the Import window, make sure Apply During Import > Metadata is set to None:
Then try importing a never-before-imported photo. Does the problem still occur? If not, you may have been using an Import Metadata preset that was clearing or setting the rating.
2. If that doesn't help, upload a never-before-imported photo that's been rated in-camera to Dropbox or similar, and post the sharing link here. That will help us identify the problem. Google shows some people reporting that the D850's star ratings don't import into LR, but they're not necessarily reliable.
Thanks for that. I had a metadata import set which added copyright to all the import files and that set overwrote most of the settings. Yay, thank you for taking the time to help me solve this; appreciate it.
Glad you got it resolved.