Natasha Darlington is a fourth year student at the University of Warwick studying Law.
From algorithms to analytics, smart contracts to artificial intelligence, there is no doubt that technology will transform the legal profession in the years to come. Junior lawyers are tasked with reading through contracts in an attempt to find unusuals or key clauses or conducting due diligence reports, but it would seem that the growing use of artificial intelligence has taken the legal world by storm. Today more and more firms are utilizing the digital technology as a way to satisfy growing client expectations.
These demands have shown a shift in parts of the “legal profession, often perceived as a technology laggard” , which could mean technology is having a profound effect on law firms’ staffing, pricing, and location. Already, many commercial law firms in the United States, United Kingdom, and Singapore are using artificial intelligence platforms to analyze contracts: allowing for cost reduction, less time spent performing low level work, and the opportunity for lawyers to carry out demanding work for clients including complex negotiations in mergers and acquisitions transactions. Having said that, there are some potential drawbacks to using artificial intelligence. Many law firms could realize that they will lose out to rivals if they do not adopt such technology, yet digital platforms may not be appropriate for their individual business models, which signifies some worries amongst legal professionals.