Technology has made our lives easier. In case of most industries, technology, specifically artificial intelligence has automated various tasks in the legal profession. But if we get straight to our question, will it ever take over the legal professionals? Will it mean that lawyers will become endangered species, and that their expertise and skills will become obsolete like certain assembly-line factory jobs? The answer is simple, No.
Even if we consider the scenario in far future, lawyers will never become irrelevant of get eradicated. But of course, we will witness them become more efficient. The evolution of technology will not take away things from us, but will expand and grow things and offer more opportunities. An analysis performed by McKinsey predicted that 23% of the work performed by legal professionals in the US has the potential for automation.
The legal industry has witnessed a lot of transformation, a majority of which was brought due to technological advancement, which developed tools so as to eliminate some tasks while making others more efficient. If we consider the initial stages when technology was introduced in legal industry, it introduced the ability to file statements of claim online. Experts believe that those times felt like a whole new world for them. All of a sudden, they could cut out the process-server that would attend the courthouse where they were trying to file the statement of claim, and that cost was gone.
Additionally, when the pandemic began, it introduced online filing of motion records, default judgment records, affidavits of service, and any other document that needed issuance. Even court hearings could also now take place virtually, saving lawyers, time, and clients, money. Lawyers can take assistance of law-practice management software to ease their processes. For instance, law-practice-management software Clio, Kira Systems’ machine learning document and contract analysis tool. These allow for more efficient workflow. Clients can now meet their lawyers, commission affidavits and sign retainer agreements, all virtually.
Since we know that software is important for the functioning of law firms. It is necessary that law students or young lawyers should start learning to use this software at an early stage. For example, new lawyers at large law firms can avoid spending 30-40 hours to understand the base law when they are assigned a legal research question. Becoming familiar with using some of these AI tools or learning how to more efficiently search for that specific area of law to better understand it would absolutely assist a law student with not only saving time and energy but also becoming more efficient.
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