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A hybrid world for lawyers

July 28, 2015

I’ve seen so much recently about technology overtaking lawyers and stating that lawyers aren’t adapting or growing with change.

In the context of my area of legal practice (drafting and negotiation complex commercial contracts often many hundreds of pages long) I’ve tried but not fully appreciated the implications.

This article by Kenneth Grady is the most illuminating I’ve read so far. Recommended reading.

For lawyers, this means the future holds a hybrid world. Lawyers must learn to use computers for what computers can do best. Lawyers should not attempt to beat computers at their game and worrying about this issue is a waste of time. As Harvard professor William H. Bossert puts it: “If you’re afraid that you might be replaced by a computer, then you probably can be—and should be.”

However, lawyers also should not worry about computers becoming better people than lawyers. Even the best computer with the ability to sense and understand emotions as well as (or better than) a person, still will not be a person.

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