“Previously undiscoverable?” Bloomberg Law launches Points of Law

Bloomberg Law yesterday (26 September) announced the launch of Points of Law, a new solution that leverages machine learning technologies to accelerate case law research.
The new feature allows attorneys to “quickly find language critical to a court’s reasoning to support their legal arguments.”  Interestingly, Points of Law is being delivered as an integrated part of the Bloomberg Law legal research and business intelligence platform, available to current customers at no additional cost.

Points of Law means that from a case, users can navigate among and augment their research with related points of law and with relevant citing cases shown as a list or an interactive timeline via the Citation Map feature.  The Citation Map enables legal professionals to view the most cited cases, relationships among key cases, and changes over time for the point of law at issue.  For ease of use, Bloomberg Law also supports a keyword search of the database so that users can search across all case law or specific jurisdictions to more easily find the point of law most relevant to their query.
Scott Mozarsky, president of Bloomberg Law said:  “With Points of Law, we have streamlined and improved the legal research process using machine learning and data visualization to reveal previously undiscoverable patterns and insights.”
Previously undiscoverable is a bold statement in this sector, where as long ago as October 2015,  Thomson Reuters, publishers of Westlaw, announced a collaboration to use IBM Watson across its information businesses. See Neota Logic’s co-founder and CSO Michael Mills with more on that topic.
We’d like to see more to back that up, but enhancing subscribers’ tools and content in this way at no extra cost is difficult to argue with.