In today’s world of rapidly advancing technology, the race to understand and leverage artificial intelligence (AI) in law has been challenging. In the legal industry, lawyers face the conundrum of advising clients about AI and potential legal risks with its use, while simultaneously evaluating and integrating it into their own practices.
This complicated tightrope highlights the importance of competency when it comes to AI and its impact on the law. Fortunately, firms don't require expertise in this subject matter, but rather an acceptance of their limits and knowing how to receive necessary transparency on how this technology works when trusting a third-party developer or vendor for services.
Realizing the full scope of what AI tools can do, let alone using it effectively to achieve objectives, can become frustrating for some lawyers if specialized knowledge in computer science areas is needed to accomplish those goals.
Understand the Risks of AI
With the continuing momentum of AI, its promise to transform the future of law is becoming more evident every year. Currently, using machine learning to review contracts is taking the legal industry by storm. The ability to reduce or even eliminate menial work allows lawyers not only to improve their accuracy when flagging provisions but to complete this process nearly twice as fast.
These tools are gaining momentum across every industry. Law firms and attorneys that support this technology feel that automation of certain tasks helps them increase the quality of service given to their clients. However, there are skeptics to remind us that machines will never replace the critical thinking lawyers provide and that these new unchartered territories are fraught with risk.
Mitigating AI Risk
Making AI applications in legal realms more beneficial, understanding the circumstances for performing some tasks using automation and machine learning software as well as understanding the related scientific processes is crucial for law firms. Recognizing this benefit can be a significant challenge for many attorneys. Their efforts would be better served relying on outside experts and services to assist in these needs.
Relying on offsite service providers to manage private data comes with its own set of risks. However, keep in mind industry standards of encryption, site-wide data privacy tools and professional IT security teams will help mitigate much of the potential threat for breaches. Federal and global governance institutions impose strict regulations to ensure and require data security is at the core of every business who gathers and stores customer data. Legal teams are routinely entrusted with sensitive client information, which makes effective data security measures imperative for their practices.
Familiarity with the risks and benefits of AI concepts and implementation is essential. This understanding should absolutely include data privacy, along with the knowledge of industry experts chosen to assess the AI applications your legal business looks to integrate. Being aware of how to go about selecting AI professionals, as well as the standards and training necessary to qualify potential providers offering such services.
In addition to these technological aspects, law firms and attorneys must work with vendors that meet legal ethics expectations overall.
The Benefits of Understanding AI
Artificial intelligence technology has enabled legal departments to streamline their workflows by automating many tasks and day-to-day processes. This increased productivity has reduced some of the operational costs for many firms, but this is just a small glimpse of the potential AI has to offer law firms.
Fully embracing AI requires a desire to stay current on the latest discoveries and a willingness to evaluate new work methodologies. While there are detractors who hold a great deal of skepticism regarding reliability, most law professionals recognize AI as proving its usefulness in developing stronger business strategies that deliver better service and mitigate some areas of risk.
The reality is that by now, many legal practices have grown familiar with AI in some areas of their operations. Using artificial intelligence to conduct research has been common practice for years now. For those holding out, it’s only a matter of time before they have no choice but to accept AI as more than just a technological option, but a necessity. Competency and understanding of the latest AI is essential in not only preparing for, but in the continued usage of technology in order to stay competitive in the current legal landscape.
About ABC Legal Services
ABC Legal is the nation’s leading service of process and court filing company and is the official process server to the U.S. Department of Justice. Docketly is a subsidiary of ABC Legal, providing appearance counsel on a digital, custom-built platform that smoothly integrates with our applications and services. ABC Legal’s applications are cloud-based and compatible for use on desktop, browser and smartphones. Our solutions and digital approach ensure process server partners, law firm customers and their clients save valuable time and resources when serving legal notices safely and with maximum compliance, control and transparency. ABC Legal is based in Seattle, WA, with more than 2,000 process servers throughout the U.S., as well as internationally in more than 75 countries. To learn more about ABC Legal, our solutions and subsidiary company Docketly visit www.abclegal.com.