3 Ways AI Impacts Legal Departments

First Reviewed : March 1, 2023
Last Reviewed: March 1, 2023

You’ve probably come across artificial intelligence (AI) tools and software already, with AI-powered legal technology gaining popularity for its myriad benefits. AI in all its forms impacts the world around us, including the legal industry. 

AI capabilities redefine legal technology, unlocking a world of potential. Document review tools don’t just review – they also redline and mark hundreds of documents that require a lawyer to review and add input, in just seconds. Machine learning (ML) is a subset of AI and does the “thinking” on rote legal work, saving legal departments hundreds of billable hours. There’s also predictive analytics which utilizes past case data and history to predict which way a case may swing – with high levels of accuracy! 

The American Bar Association says that “both in-house counsel and these new legal service providers are using AI in ways that are transforming what it means to provide legal advice.” In addition, clients can assemble data, establish performance and analyze payment metrics.

1) Offers Efficiency

Although a top benefit of AI-powered legal tech is substantial cost savings, improved efficiency is a benefit that interests legal departments the most. 

Saves Time

A Harvard Law article notes that AI affects law firms differently than it does legal departments and corporate counsel. The latter don’t benefit from maximizing their billable hours, which is a tactic that law firms find profitable. For the corporate lawyer, saving time is of the essence and AI-powered legal technology can help them save time and maintain the work-life balance that they’re looking for.

Legal Task Automation

One of the most popular applications of AI in legal tech is its ability to perform basic legal tasks autonomously. There’s no magic at play – just technology that utilizes algorithms. AI-powered legal tech algorithms can be datasets that are fed into the system with a variety of outputs available based on task requirements.

2) Redefines Hiring and Work Culture

As a result of task automation, many rote and repetitive tasks will be fully delegated to AI for its superior efficiency and virtually error-free outputs. The benefits of AI will disrupt the legal field’s job market because legal departments will find it in their best interests – in terms of time and money – to automate basic processes so that their lawyers can focus on matters that exclusively require human input.

3) Adding a Layer to Compliance

Without a doubt, AI-powered legal technology is a boon to legal. The bane of AI is that it opens up a whole new can of worms when it comes to AI bias, incorrect algorithms that lead to litigation, and AI tools not being compliant with relevant rules and regulations, says Onit. Sometimes, you may need AI to keep an eye on AI assisted self driving car cases and who is responsible in the case of an accident. These and more issues come under the compliance section of legal, offering lawyers a new area to focus on while simultaneously using AI to research and practice in. 

The future of AI in law is exciting, but not without its challenges. Legal as an industry was slow to modernize, but is warming up to the idea of AI being able to solve most of their qualms.

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