What is Artificial Intelligence (AI) and does it have a place in legal firms?
Thu 18 July 2019 - 10:24 amTech
While making the shift towards digital has become common in many businesses, the legal profession continues to trail behind.
However, in many cases, Artificial Intelligence (AI) can transform the legal profession. Not by taking over human tasks, but instead, AI can complete the repetitive, mundane tasks lawyers must finish each day.
This frees legal practitioners up to take on more involved tasks like enhancing client relationships and appearing in court. Legal technology plays a supporting role, stepping in when things go awry – like if you are sick and can’t complete a property settlement.
What is AI?
Artificial intelligence mimics certain human operations and refers to the capacity of machines to complete tasks that typically require human intelligence. So, how can this help your firm? Here are three ways.
1. Help you perform due diligence
Due Diligence comes in many forms – from verifying the identity of your client, to uncovering information on a property for your client and much more. AI and legal technology tools support legal practitioners to conduct due diligence more efficiently and accurately. Smart legal technology alerts you to information you didn’t know you needed so you can collate more comprehensive information for your client. This has a positive impact when it comes to making a good impression with your clients and can enhance the reputation of your firm as a provider who goes above and beyond.
2. Keeps you and your client safe
Lawyers need to stop emailing trust account details and contracts to their clients. There are technologies to assist lawyers to securely exchange information without risking your own and your client’s private information. Legal technology can keep you and your clients safe. While there are increasing reports of cybercrime, fraud and hacking, technology can be used for good. There are plenty of ways to protect your firm against cyber security threats including:
- Using the right anti-virus software.
- Educating your employees with phishing awareness training.
- Investing in two-factor authentication.
- Always verifying details with relevant parties like double or triple checking any change in details via different methods of communication. If there is a change of account details, call your client to confirm.
When undertaking a property exchange, key elements of the process that must be guarded against cyber security risk include the Verification of Identity of key persons, the electronic Contract for Sale and the exchange of trust account details for property deposit. To help keep you safe, InfoTrack launched Securexchange which stops the need to share trust account details via unsecured emails and protects the reputation of all professional parties involved in the property transaction.
The key to the service is that only verified parties can view trust account and deposit information, streamlining communication between those parties and offering transparency over the progress of the exchange.
3. Practice management automation
Smart technology can help you. Some technologies will automate processes like reading time logs and automatically creating an invoice for a client. Others will integrate with existing technology platforms so you can find everything you need relating to one matter in one place. Integrated technology also means you don’t have to re-key the same information multiple times. This can increase the efficiency of your firm and reduce human error.
Automation can also step in when you are out of the office. Clients expect information on demand. There’s a need for immediacy. They look for information outside of work hours, on weekends. They’re mobile and constantly engaged online. The legal industry needs to adapt to the 24/7, mobile nature of doing business. With the recent NSW mandated e-settlements, products like SettleIT replicate the traditional network of manual settlement agents without you having to manually facilitate the settlement process. So, if you’re sick, on holidays or unexpectantly away, settlement can still go ahead.
Legal practitioners don’t always have to learn a new system to get the best out of legal technology. The legal industry is awash with new technologies, but it is important to think about what you need from your technology provider. If you’re struggling with your existing systems, it’s likely due to your provider. The key to using AI and innovative technologies to enhance your legal service delivery, is keeping your tech provider accountable. Tell them what you need. That’s how they can continue to provide you with second to none service. AI and legal technology will only continue to grow and can save your firm time and money. The key is finding a service that works for your firm.
InfoTrack creates smart technology for smart professionals. We provide an integrated platform that enables our clients to find, analyse, organise and communicate information efficiently and effectively. InfoTrack has been at the forefront helping businesses through technology innovation for over 19 years and has a deep understanding of the legal conveyancing industry with over 8,000 legal clients across Australia.