Legal Technology: Why the Legal Tech Boom is Just Getting Started — from nasdaq.com by Casey Flaherty and Jae Um of LexFusion; with thanks to Gabe Teninbaum for this resource via his Lawtomatic Newsletter, Issue #136

Excerpt:

In quick succession, legal technology finally saw its first IPOs:

With private money pouring into legal tech startups and based on our own conversations inside the industry, we at LexFusion expect more IPOs on the horizon. Thus, a primer on legal tech as a category to watch. This Part I summarizes the legal market fundamentals driving unprecedented investment in enabling tech—much of which extends beyond the boundaries implied by “legal” as a descriptor.

A pivot point appears to be upon us. Considered unthinkable a decade ago, US states and Canadian provinces—following similar reforms in the UK and Australia that have resulted in the first publicly traded law firms—are rapidly creating regulatory sandboxes to expand current rules limiting (a) who can provide legal services and (b) who can own those businesses.

From DSC:
One can see why #AI will become key. “…the projected CAGR for global data volumes is 26%—to pt where ‘the amount of data created over the next three years will be more than the data created over the past 30 years.’ This data explosion complicates even standard legal matters.”

Gabe also mentioned the following Tweet, which is relevant for this posting:

 
 

The Metaverse is Taking Over the Physical World — from interestingengineering.com by Rupendra Brahambhatt; with thanks to Dan Lejerskar for this resource
The virtual world is expanding with real world avatars and digital economy.

Excerpt:

The advent of AR, blockchain, and VR devices in the last few years has sparked the development of the metaverse. Moreover, the unprecedented growth of highly advanced technologies in the gaming industry, which offer immersive gameplay experiences, not only provides us a glimpse of how the metaverse would look like but also indicates that we are closer than ever to experience a virtual world of our own.

What is the metaverse?

The Metaverse is Taking Over the Physical WorldSource: Kelvin Han/Unsplash

A metaverse is a group of persistent, shared 3D virtual environments where you (in the form of your digital avatar) can visit places, shop for products, subscribe to services, work with your colleagues, play games, and even customize the scenes around you to meet your personal tastes and requirements, and the digital assets you own. So essentially, a metaverse is a virtual world or worlds, that would allow you to go inside the digital world — to be in rather than on the digital space.

 

From DSC:
Again I wonder….on the legal side of things…how will this impact what lawyers, judges, legislators, general counsels, and more need to know? Along these lines see:

To do this well, legal department heads and the lawyers and professionals in the department will have to learn, and practice, some new skills: embracing technology, project management, change management, and adaptability.

The first, and likely most obvious, skill an attorney needs in a rapidly evolving business environment is a firm grasp on existing and emerging technology. There are two important categories of technology to consider—the first is legal technology and the second is broader technology trends.

 

 

From DSC:
What if you were working in the law office that these folks came into for help, representation, and counsel…what would you do?

Or if someone “stole” your voice for a bit:

You can see the critical role that the American Bar Association plays in helping our nation deal with these kinds of things. They are the pace-setters on the [legal] track.

 

‘A very big deal.’ Nonlawyer licensing plan clears hurdle in California — from reuters.com by Karen Sloan; with thanks to Law 2030’s October 2021 newsletter from the University of Pennsylvania’s Carey Law School

Excerpt:

(Reuters) – California is on track to become the largest state to let specially trained nonlawyers offer legal advice in limited settings, such as employment and consumer debt.

The State Bar of California’s Board of Trustees on Thursday gave its preliminary blessing to a proposed “paraprofessional” program by voting to gather public comment on the plan. The public will have 110 days to weigh in on the proposal, which if adopted has the potential to jumpstart the fledgling movement behind legal paraprofessionals, or limited license legal professionals, as they are sometimes called.

 

The Disruption Of Legal Services Is Here — from forbes.com by John Arsneault

Excerpt:

For the first time in those 12 years, I am now convinced we are on the precipice of the promised disruption in legal. Not because anyone in the law firms are driving toward this — but because venture capital and tech innovators have finally turned their attention to the industry.

Legal services are a much smaller overall market than, say, retail, financial services or biotech. In the world of disruption and the promised gold rush for the companies that do the disrupting, size matters. Legal has just been low on the industry list. Its number is now up.

It’s easy to Monday morning quarterback that industry now. Easy to see how big of a threat Amazon was to those companies. But when you are being rewarded for doing what you have always done and what your predecessors always did, it’s easy to miss what is around the bend. By the time those companies’ executives realized Amazon was a direct competitor with a much better fulfillment model, it was too late.

 

ANALYSIS: Break Down Barriers to Legal Tech Usage With Training — from news.blooberlaw.com by Francis Boustany

Excerpt:

Many law firms and legal departments report barriers to using legal technology, and insufficient training may be a root cause. To help break down these barriers, organizations should consider creating more opportunities for their lawyers and staff to train on legal technology.

When asked to select what barriers to using legal technologies exist at their organizations, respondents to Bloomberg Law’s 2021 Legal Technology Survey indicated that the top obstacles are a lack of tech savvy, a lack of familiarity with available technology, and not enough time to learn the technology.


From DSC:
If it’s not already in place, all law schools should be offering curricula in this area from here on out.

 

Legal Tech’s Predictions for Legal Technology Innovation in 2022 — from legalreader.com by Smith Johnes

Excerpts:

  • By 2024, non-lawyer workers will replace 20% of generalist lawyers in legal departments.
  • Legal departments will have automated half of legal work connected to big corporate transactions by 2024.
  • Legal departments will triple their investment in legal technology by 2025.

From DSC:
What are the ramifications for law schools and legal departments if these legal tech-related predictions come true?

 

[CA] State Bar Proposes Allowing “Paraprofessionals” to Practice Law — from acbanet.org by Tiela Chalmers

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

The [CA] State Bar currently has committees working on two proposals that would, if approved, have huge impact on the legal profession. Both committees are working on amending the legal regulatory system to address ways to expand the resources available to those needing legal help. One committee is looking particularly at tech solutions, including permitting Artificial Intelligence solutions that would automate answers to legal questions. But this blog post will focus on the one that is farther along in development – permitting “paraprofessionals” to practice some types of law, with various restrictions.

Also see:

California Paraprofessional Program Working Group — from calbar.ca.gov

Excerpt:

The State Bar’s recently published California Justice Gap Study: Measuring the Unmet Civil Legal Needs of Californians, found that 55 percent of Californians experience at least one civil legal problem in their household each year, and Californians received no or inadequate legal help for 85 percent of these problems. A lack of knowledge about what constitutes a legal issue and concerns about legal costs lead many Californians to deal with problems on their own rather than seek legal help. A thoughtfully designed and appropriately regulated paraprofessionals program is an important component of the solution to the access to legal services crisis in California by expanding the pool of available and affordable legal service providers.

 

What is a Smart Contract Audit? — from 101blockchains.com by Gwyneth Iredale

Excerpt:

Blockchain applications use smart contracts for interacting with the blockchain, and smart contracts have profound security vulnerabilities. This is where you need a smart contract audit. You might be wondering about the definition of auditing a smart contract and the resources you need for the same. The following discussion offers you a detailed guide on smart contract auditing with an outline of its definition, types, and processes.

 

The Importance of Using a Legal Videographer in Remote Proceedings — from lawtechnologytoday.org by Dave DaSilva

Excerpt:

Depositions and trials have changed drastically in recent years, as have the jurors who hear cases. The analog days of reading deposition testimony into the trial record have increasingly given way to video clips of witness testimony.

While videography was once a luxury, it’s now a necessity if you want to present the best case for your client. The importance of videography has only increased in the past year as depositions went remote during the pandemic. Professional legal videographers are not only integral to creating the best possible evidence, they’re essential for preserving your case record in a secure and admissible way.

Also see:

 

American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) Innovation Showcase — from aallnet.org

Excerpt:

Law librarians and legal information professionals innovate every day—especially in the past year. The AALL Innovation Showcase is an opportunity to explore your colleagues’ innovations, presented as short videos and categorized by three library types: government, law firm, and law school.

 

The 2021 ABA Profile of the Legal Profession
The American Bar Association’s annual compilation of statistics and trends in the U.S. legal profession.

https://www.abalegalprofile.com/

Also see:

 

How Will Blockchain Technology Affect Law Firms? — from legalreader.com by Aleksandra Arsic
Blockchain and cryptocurrencies are here to stay. The technology might yet still be new when compared to the Internet as a whole, but it has already proved it’s ready for wider usage.

Excerpt:

With the dawn of the 21st century, many new and exciting technologies arrived, promising to take off the workload, streamline day-to-day operations, and improve finances. One of the hottest innovations in recent years has been the invention of blockchain.

While it may have started as a way to keep a ledger of Bitcoin transactions, blockchain has grown way beyond that. It has been adopted by many industries, including the legal. But, what is it, and how can it be implemented in a law firm environment? Let’s find out.

Also see:

You’re pretty familiar with artificial intelligence and machine learning in your everyday life. When you use a navigation app to see the fastest route to your destination – AI. When you ask your smart home device what time your favorite store opens – AI. And when your streaming device suggests shows you might like – yes, that’s AI, too.

While AI is becoming more and more mainstream in our homes, it’s also making its way into our jobs. You may be wondering what AI-enhanced legal technology can do for you and your law firm. Here are a few ways AI can (or already has) further advance your firm’s reputation and success.

So, what does AI look like for law firms?

 
 
© 2021 | Daniel Christian