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Comment, Opinion & Guest Articles

Something for the Weekend: Vital Statistics

Partners at UK law firms tend to be younger, on average, the bigger the firm they work for – 72% of partners at the UK’s Top 10 law firms are aged 50 or under – whilst this is only the case for 60% at UK law firms overall.


Comment: Ediscovery Considerations When Moving to Microsoft Office 365 + New Product Announcement

The adoption of Microsoft Office 365 is making a stratospheric rise. According to a 2016 Gartner survey, 78% of the enterprises surveyed indicated that they are using or planning to use Office 365, up from 64% in mid-2014. This article will take a look at what e-discovery functionality is available in Office 365, what is not, and what organizations should consider when corporate legal departments are defining defensible e-discovery processes when adding Office 365 to their electronically stored information (ESI) landscape.



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ILTA and InsideLegal Release 2016 ILTA/InsideLegal Technology Purchasing Survey

The 11th edition findings include ILTA law firm legal IT budgets/spending, technology purchases, purchasing influences, legal cloud computing and AI trends; legal IT challenges


Comment: Android for Work – is mobility any sweeter for law firms with Marshmallow?

Mobile working has reached a crossroads in the legal profession. For many firms, the trusted, secure and highly managed environment of BlackBerry BBOS and BB10 is no longer the de facto standard. But with the launch of Marshmallow, Android for Work appears ready to replace BlackBerry Enterprise Services and the BlackBerry OS as the platform of choice for mobility within regulated environments. Perhaps the clearest indication of this shift is that BlackBerry itself is using Android for Work to secure and manage Android devices on BES servers.


e-signatures in focus: Olswang

Olswang’s finance legal director Anne Chitan and paralegal Charlotte Choules give Legal IT Insider an inside view into its recent decision to offer clients the option to use e-signatures.


Comic: Don’t Hate The Player, Hate The Game



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Denis Corr RIP – former Corrs partner and legal tech innovator

The Insider has learned of the recent death from cancer of UK-based legal IT innovator Denis Corr. We first encountered Corr in the early-1990s, back in the days when Wordperfect still ruled the world, with his DACS and DocMan document automation and file management systems – a forerunner of today’s matter management systems. Born and educated in Melbourne (Australia), he spent the Swinging Sixties as a partner at Corrs Chambers Westgarth before moving on to pursue other ventures.


The July/August issue of the Legal IT Insider newsletter is out now – read it here free!

Welcome to the latest issue of the Legal IT Insider newsletter – July/August 2016 #295 – TOP STORIES INCLUDE: Goodbye to fountain pens as Allen & Overy and Olswang roll out DocuSign e-signature tech – and more major firms to follow • Travers Smith to virtualise desktop and outsource data centre – “the days of being stuck to your desk for 24 hours are long gone” • Contract intelligence software is “go” as legal tech startup ThoughtRiver receives external funding • Focus on Australia with Corrs Chambers, NetDocuments, and lawtech startups Crowd & Co + LegalVision + NRF LawPath


Guest post: What lawyers can learn from Google about collaboration practices

Problem: These days productive lawyering, successful onboarding of lateral hires, and effective Legal Project Management (LPM) place a huge premium on effective collaboration, and a recent Harvard Business Review study found that “time spent by managers and employees in collaborative activities has ballooned by 50% or more over the last two decades.” But lawyers, because of their autonomous nature and persistent drive for personal achievement, are neither naturally collaborative nor comfortable as team players.


Guest post: Judge Peck declines to order a party to use TAR. What would an English judge have done?

US Magistrate Judge Andrew Peck has just declined to order an unwilling party to use technology-assisted review in a case called Hyles v New York City. E-Discovery consultant and respected blogger Chris Dale says he thinks that an English court would have made the order in analogous circumstances. “Judge Peck’s opinion forces a focus on cooperation and the role of the court which are to be our lead topics at our panel. It also draws attention to the role of guides and principles developed outside the rules,” he says.



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Judge Peck, TAR, and Cooperation in Hyles v. New York City

In an Opinion and Order in Hyles v. New York City on 1 August, Judge Peck denied a party’s request to use technology-assisted review (otherwise known as predictive coding.) Hyles provides two important lessons for the e-discovery practitioners looking to get the advantages of TAR, says kCura’s eDiscovery counsel and legal content director David Horrigan in his latest blog.


Strategic priorities: Matt Peers, Linklaters

Linklaters’ director of information systems and strategy, Matt Peers, joined the Magic Circle firm in May 2015 from Deloitte, before which he was managing director of IT at Carphone Warehouse. Here, he shares his current strategic priorities and some of the wider perspectives gained from 20 years in the professional services and retail industries.


Guest post: Selecting a cloud technology vendor? Six top tips

With the legal sector warming to cloud computing, many legal services providers are looking at adopting the technology, via applications such as document management systems (DMS), customer relationship management systems (CRM), and case management systems (CMS). The success of the cloud model to a large extent depends on the cloud service providers’ offering, knowledge and expertise. Roy Russell, CEO of Ascertus outlines six key questions to ask when evaluating cloud technology providers.


Guest post – Legal innovation: Five takeaways from the Legal Horizons Conference

The Legal Horizons Conference in Chicago sponsored by Chicago-Kent College of Law and consulting firm Janders Dean provided an opportunity to hear the latest in legal service and technology innovation in law firms, legal departments and the legal tech space. While there’s much more going on than can be covered in a post (or the rapid-fire 20-minute sessions that took place), there are some important lessons about where we are in adapting and embracing new ways of delivering legal services.


Don’t miss the deadline: THIS Friday for the next Insider newsletter

Work on the preparation of the July/August issue of the Legal IT Insider newsletter is now underway – the deadline for news releases is THIS Friday: 5th July. Please email to Caroline Hill at


Legal IT PR and the Chocolate Teapot – UPDATED

Thanks to some recent PR and marketing/press relations Muppetry – with some channels proving about as useful as a chocolate teapot – we thought it timely to remind people of our requirements. To set all this into context, we are an information provider – our mission is to curate and supply information to our readers that they will find useful. We do not charge vendors and other organisations money for running their stories and press releases – you either get in on the editorial merits of your story or you don’t. The end. (And please don’t whinge if you have sent us a boring story that we haven’t published because it is boring.) All we ask in return for running your stories is that you minimise the production process at this end by supplying content in a convenient and accessible format. So here we go with simple cut-out-and-keep rules…


“Crazy money” – What the Law Society’s £61m IT project would buy in private practice

Here’s a good one. Which legal IT project costs the same amount as it would cost to implement a major practice management system in every law firm from 50-150 in the top 200 firms in the UK?

Yes, of course, it’s the Law Society’s £61m latest IT venture, which, following a Deloitte IT review, has seen the body put together a roadmap to address the deficiencies in the Law Society’s and Solicitor’s Regulation Authority IT and separate out the two systems.


Comment: Keeping up with connectivity – why lawyers must overcome their AI fears

With the increasing adoption of artificial intelligence starting to ask more questions of legacy legal technology, Simon Price, UK Managing Director of Recommind (pictured), analyses how lawyers must overcome their suspicion of innovation in order to keep up with the connected world.


Comment: Of Brexit Fears and Mass Hysteria

Regardless of the scare-mongering and fear over what may come in the always-uncertain global economy, your law firm needs you to remain focused and do the right thing.


Tikit’s partnership with (drops cup of tea) NetDocuments

It was an announcement that came as a shock to the market and the ramifications will take time to work out. No, we’re not talking about Brexit, but Tikit’s announcement that it has entered into a worldwide partnership with cloud-based document management system provider NetDocuments, which was just slightly overshadowed two days later by the EU referendum.


“We’re trying to be ahead of the curve”: DLA’s partnership with Kira

DLA Piper in mid-June announced that it has partnered with Kira Systems to implement a global artificial intelligence tool for document review in the M&A due diligence process.

While M&A is the starting point for the circa 4,000-lawyer international law firm, Kira’s tech is expected to be applied across its other practice areas, with obvious contenders including capital markets, real estate and the intellectual property and technology team.


Venture capitalists open their wallets for LegalTech

Nick Abrahams is a partner and APAC technology practice leader for Norton Rose Fulbright and an investor in LawPath. In this article in Australian Financial Review, he reminds us of some of the recent sums invested in legal tech and some of the more interesting acquisitions in the sector.




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