The Benefits & Use Cases of Artificial Intelligence in Legal Practice.

The Benefits & Use Cases of Artificial Intelligence in Legal Practice.

Artificial intelligence and related technologies are changing both the law and the legal profession. In particular, technological advances in fields ranging from machine learning to more advanced robots, including sensors, virtual realities, algorithms, bots, drones, self-driving cars, and more sophisticated “human-like” robots are creating new and previously unimagined challenges for regulators. These advances also give rise to new opportunities for legal professionals to make efficiency gains in the delivery of legal services. With the exponential growth of such technologies, radical disruption seems likely to accelerate in the near future.

Artificial Intelligence Law (AI Law) regulates the use and development of artificial intelligence. It is an aspect of and closely related to robot law because smart robots have artificial intelligence built into them. People often mistake the use of AI by lawyers and the impact it has on the legal profession as AI law. But AI Law really refers to the application of the law on AI. There are various aspects to artificial intelligence law including data protection, intellectual property, ethics, politics, social and of course technology. Currently, we all use AI in our daily lives with applications like Siri, video games like Call of Duty, purchase predictors like coupons or advertisements, machine learning, and bots. Many organisations are using artificial intelligence (AI) to improve our lives by developing chatbots to answer people’s questions. AI is making decisions about people, like whether to grant them a loan or finance a vehicle.

Other types of AI include machine learning, bots, and driverless cars. AI has characteristics that enable machines to operate independently of human intervention. These characteristics include reasoning, knowledge, planning, communication, and perception. These characteristics allow them to assist humans by creating easier solutions to everyday tasks.

Use Cases of Artificial Intelligence in Law

  1. Evolution of Robotization : A legion of programmed robots replacing workers at the assembly line has become the most recurring and powerful image when we think of AI. Robotization is already underway, with a lot of companies trying their hands at robots for different purposes. What’s however new is that robots that were hitherto only employed for manual and tedious tasks would now begin to take on semi-skilled and skilled work as well: filling forms, creating reports, making animations, giving instructions etc. In short, from partial automation, we are looking at complete automation by training machines to do the requisite task. In Japan, by 2025, more than 80% of elderly care would be done by robots, not caregivers. This will not only increase efficiency but also give us ample time and energy to focus only on core tasks that require human intelligence.
  2. AI Complementing Lawyers : Bill Gates, Microsoft founder and philanthropist, said last year that AI can be our friend and be beneficial for society. AI has become programmed to help with due diligence, prediction technology, legal analytics, document automation, intellectual property, electronic billing
  3. Contract Intelligence : Other organizations such as JPMorgan in June 2016 have tapped AI by developing in-house legal technology tools. JP Morgan claims that their program, named COIN (short for Contract Intelligence), extracts 150 attributes from 12,000 commercial credit agreements and contracts in only a few seconds. This is equivalent to 36,000 hours of legal work by its lawyers and loan officers according to the company. COIN was developed after the bank noticed an annual average of 12,000 new wholesale contracts with blatant errors.
  4. Predictive Analytics : On the other hand, Casetext’sCARA claims to allow lawyers to forecast an opposing counsel’s arguments by finding opinions that were previously used by lawyers. Users can also detect cases that have been negatively treated and flagged as something that lawyers may deem unreliable.
  5. Litigation Strategy : Ravel Law, is said to be able to identify outcomes based on relevant case law, judge rulings and referenced language from more than 400 courts. The product’s Judge Dashboard feature contains cases, citations, circuits and decisions of a specific judge that is said to aid lawyers in understanding how a judge is likely to rule on a case.The firm’s CEO, Daniel Lewis, affirms such claim in this interview when he explained that the Ravel Law can aid in litigation strategy by providing information on how judges make decisions.
  6. Legal Chatbots : Chatbots are interactive pre-programmed phrases or AI Algorithms that are designed to interact with an audience and assist with a specific function or provide responses to customers via live chat. Although these bots are not as intelligent as a human, they can provide quick responses to queries and help gather information on what a client needs. Asides the usefulness of chatbots to law firms, some organizations have developed pro bono legal bots to assist people who may not otherwise have access to the legal system. For example, a Stanford law graduate developed an online chat bot called DoNotPay that has helped over 160,000 people resolve parking tickets, and is now being expanded to help refugees with their legal problems.

These use cases of Artificial Intelligence in Law are just what it seems to be the early beginnings of a technological disruption to the practice of law, and this will continue to accelerate moving forward. With the adoption of AI in Legal Practice, Most lawyers will be freed from the mundane task of data gathering for the value-added task of analyzing results, thinking, and advising their clients. These are roles that will always require the human touch. AI will now be a tool to help lawyers do all of this better, faster and more cost effectively.

The Workchop Conversation with Neema Magarimba, co-founder of Sheria Kiganjani, Tanzania

The Workchop Conversation with Neema Magarimba, co-founder of Sheria Kiganjani, Tanzania

The Workchop Conversations is an ongoing series of conversations with different players in both the law, tech & justice tech space, sharing about their work and innovative role within the space, promoting access to justice in Africa.

For this week, we have Neema Magimba, the Managing Partner of Extent Corporate Advisory law firm, and co-founder of Sheria Kiganjani, a platform that provides readily accessible and affordable legal services share with us the best piece of advise she has received and the impactful things she is doing at Sheria Kiganjani.

Tell us about yourself and what you do at Sheria Kiganjani.

My name is Neema Magimba, I am an Advocate admitted to practice law in  Tanzania Mainland and Zanzibar. I currently manage a corporate and intellectual  property law firm and I am also a co-founder and head of legal for Sheria  Kiganjani.  

Sheria Kiganjani (a Swahili word that translates to Law on Your Palm) is a  platform that provides easily accessible and affordable legal services through  mobile phones. The platform is available through smart phones, featured phones  and as a web platform (a website). Through Sheria Kiganjani, we provide  services such as 24/7 access to lawyers through calls and texts, templates of  different legal documents such as draft contracts or agreements, we link our  users to lawyers closest to them to save their money and time and we also  provide legal education in the most simplest and easily understandable way. The  whole platform is in Swahili language which is spoken by 80% of Tanzanians. We  have over 30k users and have resolved over 600 cases since the launch of the  platform is 2018.  

What’s the most impactful thing you believe you do at Sheria Kiganjani?  

Being able to bridge the justice gap in Tanzania. As of 2017, over 2Million  Tanzanians could not access justice due to financial and geographical  constraints. Being able to provide easily accessible and affordable legal services  to over 30,000 Tanzanians, enabling them to solve their cases or prevent legal  mishaps from happening is what we consider the most impactful thing we do at  sheria Kiganjani.  

How do you keep track of what you have to do?  

Personally, I am very conscious with how I use my time, I keep a to-do list to  keep track of everything I have to do for the day and how I distribute my time to  do it all. My google calendar keeps my time table on track as well, with reminders  to help me remember everything I have to do. As a team at Sheria Kiganjani, we  have a common team calendar that has tasks designated to every team member, 

We also have weekly meets ups at the beginning and end of the week which  helps align and be on track with what we have to do as a team.  

 What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? 

You become what you do with your time.  

How do you recharge or take a break? What do you spend time doing, besides work?  

I’m big on self-love, when I’m not working I enjoy visits to the spa, solo dates and reading (fiction), I also enjoy spending time with my friends doing the things we love the most.  

What are you currently reading, watching or listening to?  

Currently reading “Purple hibiscus” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, watching  Tribes of Europa (a show on Netflix) and I’m always listening to something on  Spotify depending on my mood haha.  

The Workchop Conversation with Sunday Fadipe, In-house Counsel & Fintech Lawyer

The Workchop Conversation with Sunday Fadipe, In-house Counsel & Fintech Lawyer

The Workchop Conversations is an ongoing series of conversations with different players in both the law, tech & justice tech space, sharing about their work and innovative role within the space, promoting access to justice in Africa.

For this week, we have Sunday Fadipe, Lawyer, Writer & Public speaker share with us what his typical day is like as an in-house lawyer in a fintech company and his favorite hack for staying productive.

Okay, tell us a bit about yourself.

I am a lawyer. I work in a financial technology company. Apart from lawyering, I write on diverse subjects and I like to read non-law books. (whispering) My pen is now dusty though. Surprisingly, I never thought I could work in-house. I thought I was too restless to do in-house and it would be boring.

Well, it is far from boring and financial technology has been a long term interest for me. And I don’t think I was born for that litigation stress. Have you ever had to file a process in Federal High Court in Lagos? Lool. I work with amazing people. That makes it really enjoyable. I also get involved in a lot of high-level transactions and conversations. That cannot be boring

What’s a typical day at work like for you?

On days that I am working remotely, wake up like 9am (please don’t tell my boss). I most times work really late into the night and I am generally not an early sleeper. I wake up to work most times as well. Wake up, say my prayers, take  a few steps to my workspace and fire down. I may not even eat until 1pm, 2pm or later. I have a bad eating habit. I take a few breaks in between, maybe some meetings in between as well and a lot of work calls.

For days that I have to work from the office, I wake up by 6am or 7am. and leave for work by 8am. Work resumes 9am. I work on transaction documents depending on my tasks sheet. Send several emails. Join or host meetings where necessary. Take break to have lunch, throw bants with some of my colleagues, and probably make calls too.

What is that one app that you think should be developed that will make your work easier but you’re surprised it isn’t in existence yet?

I think I have shared this with you before. I was thinking about an idea to make review of documents easier and voila! I found the feature on MS Word. But I’m still trying to refine the idea and maybe we’ll build it as an internal product in my company.

What apps, gadgets or tools can’t you do without?

Currently, my phone, WhatsApp, Cliq, Zoho, Twitter, Google Doc, Adobe Fill & Sign, and my dictionary app.

What is your favorite hack for staying productive?

Taking a lot of short breaks in between my work. 

What are you currently reading, watching or listening to?

I am currently reading ‘Alibaba: The House that Jack Ma Built’ by Duncan Clark and ‘How Successful People Lead’ by John Maxwell. I just finished ‘Stillness is the Key’ by Ryan Holiday. That’s one of my best reads so far. I am not currently listening to or watching anything long term.

Who would you like to answer these questions?

Enyioma Madubuike, my oga

Afriwise raises £1 million to accelerate its expansion into new countries and enhance technology

Afriwise raises £1 million to accelerate its expansion into new countries and enhance technology

Afriwise, an online platform in Africa that provides instant answers to legal and business questions, has secured a €1m investment from a pair of angel investors. Afriwise was created by Africans for Africans, and is extremely useful for anyone doing business in Africa.

Three years after being founded (end of 2018), Afriwise welcomes new investors to its shareholding, with Jacques Emsens and Christophe de Limburg Stirum joining the company’s board of directors, where they are welcomed by early investors Bart Sobry (Zoutman/Potrell) and Mathias Vandaele (Hectaar). The company announced that it has raised a €1 million investment from the Belgian investors. This is promising, as we don’t hear nearly enough about legal tech investments in Africa.

Afriwise is a subscription-based online legal know-how service founded by Steven De Backer, a former South African lawyer now based in Belgium. It offers up-to-date legal knowledge about African markets in real-time, thanks to a collaborative model with top local firms and proprietary, cutting-edge technology. The company has been recognized as the most authoritative and robust online legal-information solution across Africa, offering access to domestic legislation and bills, legal reporting, in-depth practical advice and legal-sourcing solutions, all from a single, centralised platform. Bolloré, Deloitte, Barloworld, Vodafone, Roche, General Electric, DHL, and MTN among others, have all implemented this ground-breaking solution.

Afriwise believes that by partnering with and completely incorporating the African legal sector into its platform, it is contributing to the advancement of the SDGs in the legal and justice space. Indeed, the company collaborates with over 100 law firms across Africa to provide the platform’s in-depth practical legal guidance, making it the biggest joint project ever unveiled in the African professional services sector. 

According to De Backer, the new funding will be used to provide users with more relevant content, accelerate expansion into new countries, and enhance the platform’s technology.

 Apart from Afriwise, other legal research platforms based in Africa include : Legal Doctrine, Judy, LawPavilion, JurisAfrica, etc.

Techlawyered Monthly #1: Once upon a unicorn – Flutterwave, YungaTech, HiiL West Africa, and Ross Intelligence

Techlawyered Monthly #1: Once upon a unicorn – Flutterwave, YungaTech, HiiL West Africa, and Ross Intelligence

Hello,

This has been a long time coming. Well, I am here now, and every month, I will be sharing exclusively with you insights into legal technology in Africa, as well as analysis on happenings in the space. 

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In today’s newsletter, we will be looking at some interesting stuff :

  1. 5 lessons learned from our Book of the Month
  2. A legaltech startup that caught my attention this month
  3. Somethings that I found interestingthis month
  4. 1 legal tech idea that I think should be worked on
  5. A cool tech app that I stumbled upon.

Top Lessons learned from the book of the Month

  1. Intellectual property rights impose costs upon the public. While these intellectual property laws can be justified as they encourage the creation and dissemination of new works to offset these costs.
  2. One reason why intellectual property rights are limited in scope, in duration, and in effect is so that the costs and benefits are balanced.
  3. Copyright protection is principally limited by term duration, fair use, the first sale doctrine, and some others. In contrast, “access protection” entails technological procedures that shield a copyrighted work from the attempt to copy.
  4. Fair use is a complex subjective matter that requires consideration of four factors: purpose and character of the use, the nature of the copyrighted work, the amount and substantiality of the taking, and the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of a copyrighted work.
  5. To resolve disputes involving trespass or nuisance, the court can award an injunction or free use based on a reading of statutory or common law, or some attempt to establish all costs and benefits associated with each outcome.

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Startup Spotlight

I came across this startup and found their product fascinating. Let me introduce you to YungaTech from Uganda.Yungatech provides low-cost security tools to local communities. It’s a digital network for connected neighborhoods that provides local rescue and microinsurance. The goal of the startup is to enhance community security in sub-Saharan Africa by investing in the manufacturing of fast, user-friendly crime prevention security tools that are backed by microinsurance.

Yungatech was built by Anatoli Kirigwajo, Kawesa Nasser and Kasoma Frederick in November 2018 for just one Ugandan community and has since grown to protect over 1,500 citizens in Kampala. The products under the startup are Yunga Plus, Yunga Basic, Yunga Doorbell and some others.

Yunga Plus: includes all Yunga Basic features but also allows for automatic detection of intrusion in homes on community devices, phone calls and mobile application notifications even when owners are not home. The Yunga Basic: calls for instant help by pressing the Yunga device or a tap of a button from a phone application. The Yunga Doorbell: visitors are able to use their phones to ring doorbells.
I look forward to discovering other kinds of startups involved in Community Justice like this.

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Things I found interesting this Month

  1. Andrew, former founder of the now non-existent Ross intelligence makes a transition from Law to co-founding a Medicine startup
  2. The Call for Applications for the Innovating Justice Challenge is now open
  3. The Legal Technologist publishes another issue of its bi-monthly magazine
  4. Seeking justice is not only expensive for the poor, who would have thought?
  5. The Emerging Online Valley Summit is happening on April 7th and 8th.
  6. At Techlawyered, we had an IG Live Q & A with Chukwuemeka Monyei of Ligal Aid and Damilola Yakubu of Legalboxng
  7. African fintech company announced that it raised $170 million in Series C funding, valuing the company at over $1bililion. (unicorn status activated)

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Productivity Hack-App

If you are like me and you sometimes get frustrated with trying to filter through your inbox and differentiate between newsletters, important emails and the likes, well, welcome to Spark.

Spark is an intelligent email client that shows you what’s important in your inbox. It bubbles emails from real people to the top and allows you to take batch actions on your newsletters and notifications. It was created for people who live by their inbox and who want to have an amazing experience with email. 

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At this point, let me be one of the first persons to wish you a Happy New Month of April.

You can follow us on Instagram, Linkedin & Twitter

Regards,
Kelechi.