Digitization is a sign of advancement in any field and is therefore an inevitable path that every profession and job is bound to go through in its lifetime as the people and technology around them change and adapt. In the legal field, the same can be seen with the Digitization of Cases on websites as well as Online Databases which carry every judgement that one might deem important in his/her career. This can be seen with the lack of usage in the SCC or AIR books as owned by many lawyers with experience as the same is now replaced.
This Digitization is not limited to the case filling and other such related content but can also be seen in the advent of the eCourts owing to the Global Pandemic that has been bought on to the world. The Delhi High Court has referred to the legal services as essential during these trying times making it imperative that the legal field must be able to keep up with these trying times where the light at the end is a little hard to find.
With this, there have also been numerous areas of development that have been in existence but found their way through with the idea of LegalTech which aims to minimize the involvement of humans in legal jobs or make it more friendly for lawyers to use services that may help provide better guidance to clients. Legal Tech has therefore been defined by Kai Jacob as “startups founded with the purpose of disrupting traditional legal market and increase efficiency.”
Few of the notable LegalTech companies and startup that have and may prove useful in the coming eras –
Though not an exclusive technology for the legal market, this software has proved to be one of the most important and significant lives of all lawyers as most of them now have their client meetings through this application and simulate a real client meeting. This videotelephony service provider is seen as an easy alternative to Webex and other as there is freedom of creating, using and communicating with parties unlike the organizational boundaries that come with software such as Teams, Webex and others.
This Software company is in the works in creating a learning software that can read, review and analyze contracts for faster, easier and effective legal work. This company also received a $50 million investment recently to boost research. The company provides a wide range of services including, Compliance, Due Diligence and others with the efficiency of Machine Learning.
This software much similar to the Kira Systems has the ability to manage contracts which are published or managed online by adding value. This software provides a consumer-friendly interface where the people are able to work on their agreements, audit and other such intricate works in an efficient manner.
This software aims to provide for a solution to the lawyers unlike most others which aim to minimize the work of the lawyer with machine learning. This software. This software provides a consistent solution to draft high-quality documentation using an automation tool which falters when there is anything too complex and not upto the mark.
This software taps into the unique market space of middle class legal services where the app comes in to bridge the gap between the lawyer and the client and helps them to meet for the legal services that are provided at flat rates.
This company recently acquired an investment of $8 million in the wake of the pandemic. This software aims to provide a very specific type of consumer help which is IP Law. The services they provide include trademark licensing agreements, royalties and other such tools which will prove essential in the management of IP rights such as copyrights, patents and trademarks.
LexCheck is a company that has been in business since 2008 but has found the market niche in 2020, post the pandemic. LexCheck is another Contract review platform. The same platform also owns the popular name in the legal field – Lexis Nexis which is an information provider in the legal field.
This UK startup aims at providing a new and enhanced usage of Artificial Intelligence by securing emails and the data that runs through them with specific emphasis on law firms and enterprises. Though not specific to the teams of Legal market, the software also targets the legal market in its endeavors.
Other than the above mentioned there are other software such as Lawyaw and others which provide competing services to the above-mentioned companies and few other such as Hello Divorce which provides for a niche market in the state of California, USA. In light of this, the obvious question that one has, is whether this is the way the future looks even in India and whether this Tech poses a risk to the lawyers in the new gen.
IS IT A THREAT?
The short answer is, no. In a country like India where the manpower has always proven to be more efficient than the automated one as well as the wake of the pandemic has proven that the human touch is one that cannot be eliminated in any job. Machines were once supposed to take away the jobs of the Doctors but the entire world still relies on them, to get us through the pandemic. Therefore, in a country like where Legal Tech has not seen significant R&D does not have the risk of job loss due to machines. It is also to be mentioned that none of the apps as mentioned above aim to take away jobs but only aim to provide better service both to lawyers and clients. Finally, no machine can ever take away the human touch and emotion that is bought by a lawyer in trials, which form an important facet of the profession.