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Buying Legal – ALSPs see 24% increase in BigLaw spend as in-house legal growth halts

In what should serve as the latest wake up call to BigLaw firms and the clearest evidence of a change in buying habits among the largest corporates, the money spent by Fortune 100 law firms and their international equivalents on alternative legal service providers over the past year has increased by 24%, according to extensive research by the Buying Legal Council, in a report out last week. However, with corporate legal spend on the rise after years of cuts, traditional law firms also saw a significant spike in demand, as for the first time the growth of the in-house legal team halted, raising questions as to whether growth in that sector of the market has for the time being come to an end.


Ashurst Advance teams up with LSO Cognia Law to scale offering

Ashurst’s Glasgow-based legal services centre Ashurst Advance has teamed up with legal service outsourcing provider Cognia Law to bolster its capability and enable it to scale its offering.



Updated: PwC unveils first cohort of scale ups in LawTech programme

Big Four giant PwC has unveiled the eight scale up companies that will take part in its inaugural Scale LawTech programme, with a heavy emphasis – you may not be surprised to hear – on AI-backed compliance and contract review and management solutions. 


AI or Excel on steroids? The ethics of AI as a tool, and its future regulation

From a technological perspective, AI is simply a series of computing techniques that are designed to mimic human behaviour. In that sense, AI has been around since the 1950s, Bristows IT partner Chris Holder told delegates at the 2019 Legal Leaders #GlenLegal IT Forum. “I would question whether what many CIOs are currently purchasing is true AI, or whether it is actually just excel on steroids,” he said, in a wide ranging and thoughtful talk on how AI is currently being used, how that will change, and what that means in terms of meaningful regulation and ethics.


Massive US expansion for LEAP as it offers “migration pathway” for 15,000 Lexis PCLaw and Time Matters law firm customers

In a major expansion into the United States for cloud case management provider LEAP Legal Software, the Sydney-headquartered company has entered a joint venture with LexisNexis to offer a migration pathway to the 15,000 law firm customers of PCLaw and Time Matters in the United States, Canada and Australasia. But what does the JV mean in practice?


LWOW director Erika Concetta Pagano joins Wavelength as head of legal innovation and design

In a big international hire for Wavelength, Erika Concetta Pagano has left her role as both lecturer in law at the University of Miami School and Law and director of LawWithoutWalls to take on the new role of head of legal innovation and design at the UK-headquartered legal engineering firm. Pagano will lead “the development, growth and management of the legal design and innovation aspects” of Wavelength’s business.


ACEDS bring in Microsoft’s Rachi Messing to global advisory board

Ediscovery education and certification provider the Association of Certified e-Discovery Specialists (ACEDS) has brought in Rachi Messing from Microsoft to its global advisory board. Messing is a senior program manager at Microsoft, currently working within the corporate, external, and legal affairs group.



Lat Am Win: Cuesta Campos selects NetDocuments

Cuesta Campos, a top ranked full-service law firm with offices and affiliate firms across Mexico, has chosen NetDocuments as its native cloud-based document and email management platform.


Freshfields Lab: The team behind the initiative share their plans for a dedicated “client experience space”

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has opened its debut Freshfields Lab. The new initiative, launched out of Berlin’s start-up campus known as The Factory (with plans afoot to open a second Lab in London), is focused on developing technology-based solutions for clients as they face increasingly complex challenges around mass claims, global transactions, investigations and cyber risks.


“Police are innovating in silos”: Use of algorithms in the justice system needs “urgent oversight”

A year after the Law Society’s legal and regulatory policy director Sophia Adams Bhatti conceived of the idea for a commission on the use of AI in the criminal justice system, the Society has published its final report, which finds that the ad hoc use of complex algorithms in the justice system needs urgent oversight in the face of “a worrying lack of oversight or framework.”


BigHand support staff survey: Just 3% say they have all the information they require first time

An extensive survey by BigHand of over 800 legal support staff globally gives a rare insight into the daily challenges and working experiences of support teams, with only a staggering 3% of respondents saying they receive all the information they need to complete a task first time.



Mover and shaker: Steph Abbott, HSF

Congratulations to Steph Abbott, who has taken on the role of director of knowledge & learning at Herbert Smith Freehills, heading the function globally. Abbott, who is based in Australia, was previously a director at Janders Dean, which works closely with HSF.


Updated: Akin Gump adopts Filetrail as part of wider cultural IG change

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld has adopted FileTrail GPS to help manage the way it retains, stores and ultimately destroys its data. The move – notably underpinned by a significant cultural change piece – is being led by assistant general counsel for information governance, Christopher Egan, who joined Akin Gump from the US Department of Justice in November 2017.


Intapp acquires OnePlace: The analysis

We speak to Intapp’s CEO John Hall and OnePlace founder and CEO Tim Smith about the acquisition, which as we exclusively revealed in the May Orange Rag, will see OnePlace retained as the brand for the legal sector, and DealCloud within financial services.


Simkins: How we modernised our cost recovery with nQueue

When Simkins had the opportunity to modernise its cost recovery system the choice boiled down to Equitrac, PaperCut or nQueue. Nick Wright, IT manager at Simkins LLP describes the journey and the outcome.


Gordon McAlpine joins Mason & Cook to lead global tech product launch

BigHand’s co-founder and legal tech veteran Gordon McAlpine has joined resource management consultancy Mason & Cook as a non-executive director to oversee the growth strategy of its technology product – Vantage. He will be responsible for the global launch and continued growth of the software arm of the business.


von Briesen & Roper: Simple Innovation

von Briesen & Roper’s strapline is “We do things differently” and, according to CIO William Caraher, that statement also applies to their approach to technology – but it’s the simplest innovations that have been the most effective.


PLMJ hacked

In news that has yet to make it out of Iberia, Portugal’s largest law firm, PLMJ, this year became the latest firm to fall victim to a cyberattack after its network was compromised and information relating to the the Benfica football corruption investigation published Wikileaks-style on a football blog.


The May 2019 Legal IT Insider Newsletter – issue #323 – is out now

Well well well, how is it the end of May, that’s what we want to know. In this bumper issue of the Orange Rag we bring you all the latest news, analysis and commentary from all the leading players.


Clarilis to underpin TLT white label document automation service

TLT has extended its existing relationship with Clarilis, which on top of helping TLT to automate its own contracts internally will now form the basis of a white labelled document automation service for clients.


Top 50 Law Firm Profiles: Herbert Smith Freehills

As part of our project to profile the IT capability of the top 100 legal IT teams/law firm IT capability, Legal IT Insider spoke to Haig Tyler, CIO at Herbert Smith Freehills about their strategy and structure as well as the key technology recently introduced at the firm.


HighQ’s new corporate legal platform: The extended interview

In March we revealed that HighQ was about to launch a new platform for corporate legal teams that will include work and collaboration tools for enterprise legal management, document management, matter management, legal intake and self-service, contract management and vendor management. Here is the extended interview with CTO Stuart Barr to coincide with HighQ’s annual user conference.


Trending: The “One” & only “Place” to be “Global” tech giant Intapp’s latest acquisition

Intapp today announced it has acquired OnePlace, a leading provider of cloud-based solutions for marketing and business development teams. Intapp and OnePlace are joining forces to address the growing need for a unified front office solution spanning the client life-cycle that helps firms cultivate key relationships, drive growth, and better compete in their modern marketplace.



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