find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
AI hype preventing lawyers from seeing benefits

AI hype preventing lawyers from seeing benefits

Lawyers must get over the hype around artificial intelligence and learn to embrace the benefits it can bring to their practices, according to a boutique firm director.

Speaking at the ALPMA Summit earlier this month, ConnectLaw director Fabian Horton said that when it comes to artificial intelligence (AI) lawyers fall into two categories: 'utopians', who see AI as a beneficial tool to make their jobs easier, and 'dystopians', who see AI as taking over their jobs.

“I’m an AI utopian and I really do think that there is a lot that we can gain from using this type of technology, and we have more to be encouraged by it that we do to be discouraged,” Mr Horton said.

The hardest and most important thing, according to Mr Horton, is for lawyers to get over the hype surrounding AI.

“If we don’t get over the hype, we get sucked in by the media, whether it’s good or bad, and then we can't see the future as what it really is. We can't determine how we're going to use this technology to our advantage.”

Mr Horton pointed to research conducted by Oxford University that revealed it is highly unlikely that lawyers' jobs will be replaced by AI.

“They say that lawyers are actually pretty safe. 3.5 per cent of what you do will be automated,” he said.

Mr Horton said that this is because clients like having a relationship with a human lawyer, and that will never change.

The news isn’t quite so positive for judges, however, with Oxford revealing there is a 40.1 per cent chance of their roles being automated.

“We already know that a lot of these decisions that we are looking to make are actually pretty formulaic, and we know that dispute resolution centres in the world are booming,” he said.

“Ebay, Facebook, they all have internal dispute resolution processes that are being done by AI.”

Worst off in the legal industry are the paralegals, with a 94.5 per cent chance of their jobs being automated. However, Mr Horton said that this isn’t necessarily bad news either.

“If we have a look at these questions they asked, my opinion is that these are questions about the current jobs that paralegals do,” he said.

“We all know that as technology comes, our roles change, and if it was true that technology was going to be replacing us it would've happened by now.”

Instead, lawyers are looking to fill the time saved by AI, which results in jobs and positions changing.

“What we see is even though the technology is coming through, it’s actually not giving us less to do, it’s giving us different things to do,” Mr Horton said.

“That’s the thing that we can look at with paralegals as well. A lot of the NewLaw firms that said ‘We're not hiring paralegals, we're not hiring undergrads, we're not hiring early-career lawyers’ have now gone, ‘Actually, we need them and we need them to do different stuff’.”

This year Lawyers Weekly will host its inaugural Future Forum, kicking off in Sydney on 9 November and Melbourne on 11 November.

The Future Forum is an event designed for lawyers who want to stay at the cutting edge of technological change and business innovation.

To learn more about the event or to register, click here.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

AI hype preventing lawyers from seeing benefits
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
06:04
‘Ego status’ compelled ex-lawyer to defraud $2.97M, court told
Debarred lawyer John Gordon Bradfield told an NSW District Court that he was driven by “ego status...
Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA), Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legislation,
06:03
ALA welcomes ‘tough’ Qld manslaughter laws
The Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) has welcomed Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legisl...
Legal podcasts, tune in, microphone
06:00
Legal podcasts you have to tune in to right now
The rise of the internet has hailed in a new dawn for storytelling. Here’s our top pick of podcast...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...