5 Defining LegalTech Trends in 2020

Published by Matthew Markham on Sep 11, 2020

Technological innovation should be a priority for law firms as pen and paper practices fall to the wayside in the face of the digital revolution. Law firm employees - and lawyers in particular - will need to have a working understanding of these technological advancements in order to accommodate their implications for their clients.

Lawyers will need to be able to guide their clients through any potential issues that may crop up with these tech trends. Furthermore, legal marketers can use knowledge of these trends to identify and capitalize upon business and market development opportunities. Here are 5 key tech movements facing the legal industry:

  1. The rise of virtual legal assistants (VLA’s):

    The realm of legal tech is full of solutions to replace manual tasks - and VLA’s are just one more facet of this. Internal requests to legal departments at large organizations can be fielded through VLA’s, freeing up time and space for in-house teams.

  2. A push to decrease the gap between those with legaltech expertise and those “without”:

    As more and more firms trend towards tech incorporations in their day to day activities, the gap between firms with a useable knowledge of tech and those without will naturally decrease as the tech becomes more widely used and thus more widely available. Furthermore, with the increased presence of legal tech in firms, it will become more common for all legal departments to have a working understanding of legaltech.

  3. Increased attention to third party risk management (TPRM):

    The digital transformation of the legal realm will inherently increase the risk associated with third parties. TPRM is presently not a focal point for legal firms, but as legal, compliance, privacy, procurement, supply chain, quality, finance, and IT departments advance technologically, they will need to advance their risk management practices as well in order to present a unified view of risks for the organization as a whole. This can include software like matter management software that will reduce the cost associated with claims and ensure policy term compliance.

  4. Increased investment in privacy technology:

    Data breaches are a fairly common issue for individuals and organizations, especially given how reliant everything is on technology nowadays. Law firms stand to lose more than the average organization since their clients typically rely on them for privacy. That being said, firms should seek to increase their privacy tech spending so they are prepared for the inevitable risks of the digital age.

  5. Use of machine learning/AI:

    Machine learning is becoming the go-to for legal research and predicting litigation outcomes for insurance carriers and TPAs. Artificial intelligence software can enable law firms to work faster and at a lower cost - by eliminating the need for a person to sift through pounds of paper. This is often realized without forsaking the quality that is associated with work done by a person. AI can render drastic improvements for a firm’s due diligence, contracts, and legal analytics, amongst other critical day to day functions.

Authored by:

Matthew Markham

Matt is an experienced writer, having learned his approach from time spent at Brown University and Oxford University's journalism course. He is the COO of Bilr, a leading legal billing application, and has authored a number of #1 Google ranked articles that have featured in CNBC, Forbes and Entrepreneur. His background originated in investment banking at Morgan Stanley, where he had first had experience looking at the inefficiencies of law in business today.

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