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Comment, Opinion & Guest Articles

UPDATED: EU Parliament: Special legal status for robots & AI on the way – see footer

Andrew Joint, commercial technology partner at Kemp Little, outlines the EU Parliament’s current discussions on giving robots special legal status, the highly complex issue of liability as AI becomes more autonomous, and how genuine legal discussion is not helped by science fiction.

16/02/2017

Case Study: Winter Scott escape from under a dark cloud

Winter Scott requires a smooth, responsive and efficient running IT infrastructure so its staff members can successfully conduct international business. Unfortunately this was not the case since the practice had migrated of all its IT hardware and software into a public cloud facility.

03/02/2017

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Guest Comment: Legal Services and Technology Innovation – are we there yet?

The late comedian Bill Hicks accused marketing of being ‘the ruiner of all things good’. In fact, he went much further but we’ll leave the reference at that. Suffice it to say that there are some out there, whose views on ‘innovation in legal services’ have not been too dissimilar.

03/02/2017

Ediscovery trends in 2017: everything from artificial intelligence to mobile data centres say Kroll Ontrack

Kroll Ontrack predicts a year of change in 2017 as organisations prepare for the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the accelerated adoption of artificial intelligence. The ediscovery industry will continue reshaping itself to meet these requirements in 2017, building on the huge international consolidation seen in the previous two years.

30/01/2017

LegalTech New York – still the greatest ediscovery show on Earth?

Our friends Jo & Jo at InsideLegal have just published their annual preview of the New York LegalTech show (our own Caroline Hill will be reporting from there as soon as she lands) and have produced another “word cloud” highlighting the key topics on the event’s agenda. Yes, once again, it’s ediscovery all the way…

30/01/2017

Comment: AI in Business: It starts with the basics

It starts with document management. Conversations about AI tend to have a sci-fi vibe: robot personal assistants, self-driving cars, you name it. But the real, day-to-day business value of AI is much less futuristic, starting with the hundreds and thousands of contracts that keep business deals up and running every day.

26/01/2017

The January issue of the Legal IT Insider newsletter is out now

Welcome to the latest issue of the Legal IT Insider newsletter – January 2017 #299 – our top stories include Herbert Smith Freehills go social media with Yammer + Cybersecurity – 80% of law firm disaster recovery now stems from hacks + iManage release Work 10 – the best thing it has done in 15 years + Robots to get civil rights + how not to handle the departure of your CEO

25/01/2017

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Wait… a UK government minister goes all the way to Tel Aviv to praise the Israeli legal tech startup scene?

Earlier this week the UK Minister of State for Digital & Culture Matt Hancock, said Israel was ripe for creating disruption in the global law profession at an inaugural legal tech event held in Tel Aviv. Well good news for LawGeex but hello minister, shouldn’t you be promoting the UK legal tech startup scene?

23/12/2016

2016: Legal tech grows up

2016 has been something of a coming of age story for legal technology. The slightly irritating teenager that hung around waiting for an invite to the party has got rid of their spots and is starting to feel pretty damn cool. And hey, guess what, not only are they being invited to parties, but they are having to turn some down.
The past year has been a great number of things – frothy, over-excited, and a period when everything, but everything was labelled AI – but beneath the hyperbole, leading law firms have been making meaningful and in some cases systemic changes that are here to stay.

22/12/2016

Guest post: Verein – what is it good for?

As King & Wood Mallesons’ pioneering global verein unravels, leading legal IT consultant Neil Cameron puts the verein structure under a microscope. He outlines what a verein is, who first used it (the accountants – but not any more) and its benefits, before casting a more critical eye over the issue of liability sharing and conflicts of interest, and inevitably the KWM lesson. Clients need cohesion and Cameron concludes that it is becoming apparent that the verein structure is not sufficient to ‘cement’ firms with different cultures and motivations, or encourage discrete law firms to ‘semi-merge.’ Unless vereins make key changes they are, he says, “doomed to failure.”
Grab a coffee – this is not a two-minute skim – but if you read nothing else on vereins this year, read this.

21/12/2016

Guest Comment: Understanding, and creating, a mobile work culture in an on-demand world

Moving from a long-established, traditional work culture, in which staff are employed for a fixed number of hours in a workplace that might be the same building for years or decades, to a mobile paradigm of employment, might appear daunting. The reality is different for the adaptable and prepared.

20/12/2016

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Cybersecurity: Law firm initiatives and law firms at risk!

If data is the new oil, then cybersecurity is the new burglar alarm. Here’s a roundup of the latest developments…

14/12/2016

The December issue of the Legal IT Insider newsletter is out now

The latest issue of the Legal IT Insider newsletter is out now – read it here free – we’re loving this quote by Daniel Pollick of DLA Piper “2016 was the year Legal AI went from bleeding edge novelty to me-too mimicry but without a clear direction.”

13/12/2016

On the Sofa with Mike Lynch, founder of Invoke Capital

Mike Lynch has been described as Britain’s Bill Gates, having in 1996 co-founded global software giant Autonomy, a spin off from computer finger print recognition firm Cambridge Neurodynamics. Lynch has more recently founded and is CEO of machine learning and AI investment company Invoke Capital Partners, which investments include due diligence tool Luminance, created in partnership with Slaughter and May. Legal IT Insider caught up with Lynch, a keynote speaker at Legal Leaders IT Forum in Gleneagles in March 2017, to hear his reflections on how technology is changing the legal landscape.

09/12/2016

Guest cybersecurity post by Tim Hyman: GDPR and why the Data Protection Officer should be your new BFF

GDPR is only 18 months away and any firm that has already started an Impact Assessment will know that they need all the time available to prepare. This a business project, owned at board room level but best managed and delivered by the IT/Risk team.

06/12/2016

Survey Results: South African Attorneys Continue to Embrace Technology

An increased appetite for online services, smarter use of technology, and the entrenchment of digital research, are just some of the continuing shifts among the attorneys’ profession in South Africa. This is according to a new survey of close to 750 South African attorney firms, conducted by LexisNexis South Africa content and technology solutions provider in partnership with Law Society of South Africa.

01/12/2016

Guest post: Uber-Style Feedback for BigLaw?

In this compelling guest post for Legal IT Insider, John Alber, respected former strategic innovation partner at Bryan Cave and now ILTA futurist, asks, why should BigLaw be immune from the granular, regular feedback we’ve come to expect from modern businesses in other service sectors?

30/11/2016

Privacy is the New Black: Data Protection and the GDPR

Privacy is the new black but with the EU’s incoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into force, businesses need to understand the high level requirements and not leave it to the legal department to ensure compliance. There’s too much at stake.

24/11/2016

South African Legal Tech: The Korbitec acquisition one year on

November 2016 marks one year since legal content and technology solutions provider LexisNexis South Africa (LNSA) acquired Korbitec, a leading provider of content-enabled workflow solutions for South African property professionals. The successful acquisition has significantly extended LexisNexis’ reach into the conveyancing field, which is a critical component of the South African legal market where conveyancing firms represent 25% of the landscape. According to Billy Last, CEO of LNSA, the timing last year was perfect to close a deal his firm had been chasing for 13 years.

17/11/2016

Comment: Agile working: can lawyers learn from uberisation?

Agile working, as it is known in legal circles, has become standard practice for several categories of employer: particularly those which fully appreciate that it can help to make their organisation more efficient and effective, delivering improved business performance together with greater customer satisfaction. But although it is now more than two years since legislation was introduced which extended the right to request agile working, recent research from Timewise revealed that only 6% of jobs advertised in the UK mentioned agile working.

15/11/2016

Comment: Is predictive coding becoming a game changer for the legal industry?

With the extension of costs budgeting to all multi-track claims with a value of less than £10 million and the May 2016 decision of the English High Court in Brown v BCA Trading Limited [2016] EWHC 1464 (Ch), in which it permitted a party to use predictive coding technology in a contested application, it goes without saying that knowing how and when to use predictive coding will provide both lawyers and their clients with a clear tactical advantage. Morgan Lewis partner Tess Blair and associate Afzalah Sarwar look at the benefits of the technology and say parties can no longer afford to ignore it.

10/11/2016

The October-November 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 – October/November 2016 #297 – TOP STORIES INCLUDE:
• Law firms courting FinTech startups – Slaughter and May + Addleshaw Goddard already in – who’s next – and for how much?
• So sad about hacking: Pessimistic cybersecurity – a necessary evil? The Insider talks to Mike Lynch + Howard Russell + Marcel Henri + Dan Carmel
• Neota Logic partners with Clifford Chance + BLP offering bespoke document automation + RPC providing in-house litigation support
• NetDocuments & iManage continue to duke it out in the DMS market as more firms abandon OpenText & SharePoint sinking ships + Have we seen the high-tide of InterAction in the CRM sector as OnePlace wins another deal + momentum building for Elite 3E as firms switch from TRE Enterprise & Envision

09/11/2016

E-Disclosure People: Jonathan Maas on why he is launching his consultancy now

In 1982 the first Next store opened, unemployment was at 3 million, Argentina invaded the Falklands, Canada received its independence*, the Smiths were formed, Prince William was born, Channel 4 started broadcasting, Lord Denning stopped judging and I started in the City.

12/10/2016

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