Artificially Intelligent Lawyers Are Coming

Frequently called cognitive computing or machine learning, artificial intelligence is essentially computers executing tasks customarily performed by individuals. In basic terms, AI innovation works by applying a measure of test information and results, beforehand inspected by an expert, to a cognitive system. The system is then ready to use information at rapid rates to deliver a speedier and more precise outcome. AI displays its own set of risks – including innovation or algorithm errors, and inaccurate applications. 

This basic structure has lead to a global anxiety about automation. Artificially intelligent robots could replace law enforcement, could be the next big DJs, and render many medical careers extinct. Now, they seem to be making moves to wards the legal industry.

Related: All of Us could be Robots by 2030

AI and Legal Industry

In spite of what one may think, the discussion on artificial intelligence in law is as of now over 30 years of age – take for example the Stanford Law Review article in 1970 “Some Speculation about Artificial Intelligence and Legal Reasoning”. Or the main “Global Conference on AI and Law” in 1987 at Northeastern University in Boston. A chatbot giving advice on the pay for your parking ticket or the algorithm that predicts US Supreme Court decisions – all of these indicate AI usage on legal services exploding over time.


For quite a while, there have been a few brilliant minds on a very basic level reevaluating the legal profession. Nonetheless, it is very recently that these themes have ventured out of the domain of the scholarly community.

Between 2011 and 2016, worldwide legal tech organizations raised $739M up in total financing. Those numbers are still low contrasted with those of Healthtech or Fintech, which go into the billions, yet legal tech is poised for new development. For instance, AngelList records the quantity of recorded legal tech organizations as 15 in 2009, contrasted with 1,164 today. IBM even discovered this field. In 2016, the organization joined forces with specific colleges hoping to utilize its supercomputer and Jeopardy! champion Watson to create a computer lawyer.

One of the essential purposes behind the expansion in legal tech organizations is because of the expanded availability of neural systems administration models and other probabilistic algorithms. In 2015, Google open sourced its AI engine. Moreover, among corporate elements and private citizens, the interest for selective and less expensive legal administrations is rising.

LAWGEEX is another example which automates our contract review and approval process.

Apart from that, NEXLP promises cognitive analytics for corporations and WEVORCE helps a couple in divorce cases using web technology. 


The AI world has more to do with augmentation than automation. While the former involves machines helping us accomplish a task, the latter is where the machine replaces you in doing a task. With evolving practices and tech adaptation in the legal industry, the work of a paralegal, an outsourced attorney in another country, or a machine is going to go away. But this cannot be considered as a tragedy. Any employee who spent his life doing diligent work on a case review for hours in the basement hall will probably not look back at his career with fondness and nostalgia.

The jobs that will replace these tasks are surely not going to be worse for that matter. The organisations that will be most influenced would be the substantial, high-esteem business firms whose associates hope to be given intriguing work, and a large portion of whom seek to the status and riches that value partnership affords.

We must understand that the goal of AI is not to alter the nature of legal work or replace human lawyers. It is to increase their productivity by enabling them to concentrate on more cognitive tasks, such as developing legal arguments and not drafting and reviewing documents, extensive research of case files and other un-billable tasks. Not only will its application save time in various areas, it’ll also minimises human error or fatigue.

Revolution For Junior Lawyers

With AI, the Law Practice Program (LLP) could see itself reinvented. One result is an emphasis on being exceptionally entrepreneurial, as adaptable as possible, and looking for “coordinated” work: contract-based, extent based. The abilities that will be expected of future legal counselors will not the same as the ones that served past eras. Understanding, resourcefulness, guide, judgment, initiative, innovativeness, and hazard appraisal are the important attributes. That would be looked upon in an entrepreneurial setting of the legal industry. Networking is one skill that the AI will find tougher to replace, and thus aspiring lawyers will need to have a strong base there.

Although very few, but some significant graduate schools have begun to include tech into their educational modules. Starting in 2012, Georgetown University offered a Technology Innovation and Law Practice practicum. In 2015, the Melbourne Law School started offering a course on building Legal Apps. It appears to be sure that the future will open the way to junior lawful experts who know how to develop and grasp a greater amount of these apparatuses.

Also Read: Automation In CyberSecurity: Friend Or Foe?

Political Initiatives

In the political scenario, many national governments have already started practicing certain policies to introduce technology in the legal business. The Japanese government declared in 2015 “Another Robot Strategy,” which has reinforced coordinated effort between industry, the administration, and the scholarly community. Recently, the United Kingdom made a parliamentary gathering — the All Party Parliamentary Group on Artificial Intelligence — commanded to investigate the effect and ramifications of man-made brainpower, including machine learning.

Likewise, under the Obama administration, the White House discharged the reports, Artificial Intelligence, Automation, and the Economy” and “Get ready for the Future of Artificial Intelligence.” The reports consider the test for policymakers in refreshing, fortifying and adjusting strategies to react to the financial impacts of AI. The Canadian government reported considerable interests in a Pan-Canadian Artificial Intelligence Strategy. These ventures look to reinforce Canada’s technical expertise and to pull in and keep up sophisticated talent.

Trends in the AI Legal Industry

In 2016, there are key patterns developing in AI usage in case management across the legal sphere. Document Review, which requires heavy research, investigation and compliance can be done with the help of cognitive AI technologies. This leads to a reduction in cost and time, and increased accuracy. Another trending practice is the exciting task of Case Prediction. AI has the potential to predict the outcomes of legal disputes via an automated analysis based on past records. AI for such purposes is already being used by some firms like the London firm Hodge Jones & Allen executed a predictive model of case outcomes which assesses the viability of its personal injury caseload. Finally, Advisory Services is another emerging practice in the potential application of Ai technology in the legal industry. Based on the data fed to the computer, it can help the clients with simple advisory services with minimum cost and time investment.

Future Prospects

Looking at the current trends, 10 years down the line we will have much more proactive lawyers than reactive. A lawyer today reacts to any case by digging into his books and records of past cases. With technological advancements, a lawyer will always be updated about each and every case through newsletters, or other means. Gregory House from the TV series House won’t be fictional anymore. However, one needs to understand that technological advancements can generate knowledgeable and informed lawyers but not ‘better’ lawyers as such.

Lawyers will be bound to do altogether different work contrasted with past eras. And in this manner should experience an alternate education. Who knows, maybe the not so distant future will birth a completely new calling of legal A.I. whisperers? For example, legal developers, lawful database supervisors, and lawful information investigators. This also means getting non-lawyers involved in the legal profession to provide a lot of insight into an improvisation of this system. Consultants from different sectors could provide insight into how we lawyers can change our system. Our system is outdated and we need fresh sets of eyes to tell us how we can improve our model.

Despite advances, there will be still few progressions that will take place before AI becomes mainstream. Stage one is the area of contract attorneys and librarians. To access any source material, one will search through automated technologies rather than looking in files and libraries. Stage two is the domain of junior attorneys as it is the area of legal analytics. Reviewing materials and transactions will be augmented here. The final stage is the determination of optimal outcome through “big data” and expert systems. This is represented by the skilled and experienced lawyers of the industry. However, this will not take place anytime soon as legal industry is known for its slow adaptation to technological advancements.

Where do we head now?

Artificial intelligence won’t replace a legal counselor because of the intricate idea of debate and negotiations and the expectations of customers. AI will nonetheless, keep on challenging customary models of lawful administration conveyance, to computerize administrations, diminish costs and enhance precision utilizing information.

Right now, AI’s effect is transcendently on paralegal and junior legal counselor parts, whose present obligations are probably going to get automated in the next several years.

Firms that are executing AI strategies, for the most part through collaborations with expert AI tech providers, are seen as an innovative and front line. However, firms which decline to do as such will be seen as out-dated and withdrawn, as AI turns into the new type in the legal industry.