Artificial Intelligence in legal service delivery

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Janis Criger

Yes, please, as long as it (or the person/entity using it) can be properly regulated to protect the public interest. Can’t yet see a way to regulate direct to consumer services, but there should be a requirement to know what you are doing when it comes to using AI as part of a law practice.


Quinn Ross

Like it or not it’s coming.  I believe it can and should be regulated.  In the end, the delivery of legal services is a controlled act and should be subject to assurances of competency.  Just because it says AI doesn’t mean it’s right.


Michael B Lesage

AI will be transformative, eliminating a number of functions previously performed by lawyers, especially by junior lawyers (i.e. legal research, drafting).


Douglas W. Judson

Tech-driven innovation in law is unavoidable. The LSO needs to get out in front of this changing landscape and ensure that the basic safeguards and hallmarks of our profession are respected – competency, confidentiality, etc. AI models can perpetuate systemic biases and the regulator needs to be alive to those risks once AI gains a foothold in legal service delivery and other areas of the justice sector.


Rene Larson

AI can provide more tools in every lawyer’s toolbox so that we lawyers can offer better legal services to the public at lower costs; LSO must be involved in the adoption of AI and help lawyers use AI in their daily practices.  We need a hands on approach by LSO so that small practitioners do not need to go through a trial and error process to adopt AI.  LSO needs to get on the HELP & SUPPORT LAWYERS bandwagon.
The biggest future challenge for LSO will be to ensure that Ontario has its own AI enabled lawyers to serve the public.  There will be challenges from internet based AI service providers outside of Ontario who will attempt to deliver legal advice and services directly to the public through the internet without utilizing lawyers licensed in Ontario.  Ontario’s best service to the public should come from LSO educated lawyers using LSO approved and recommended AI technologies in their practices.  


Sean Robichaud

To me, this is more about catch phrases and legal conferences than anything else. 
AI is not going to save us nor is it going to drastically change the way we do law. I say this coming from a very technologically advanced firm that uses systems that a nimble, cloud bases, and efficient. That said, all the technology in the worlds is not going to forgo the need for us as lawyers to think through problems and provide practical advice to clients who want to meet a person, not a robot. If we reach the point were AI can understand the complexity of what we do as lawyers, then the LSO won’t exist anyway. This is very far off in the future. 
In the mean time, we should not be wasting our money on consultants, talks, and other empty discussions on “AI” when the vast majority of lawyers don’t even know who Alan Turing is, let alone how to code. 
Yes it is critical to be technologically competent and the more we can embrace technology the better, but this is not the same as empty concepts like “”AI legal delivery”


Antoine L Collins

I have heard the argument that A.I. in the legal sector will promote increased efficiency, lower cost and higher accuracy, but my question is: to what extent? Currently, I have doubts that A.I. will only be good news for clients, but I am approaching this issue with an open mind, and I am keen on hearing both sides of the debate.


François Baril

AI has arrived and is changing the way we practice. LSO needs to consider the implications for the profession and for the public; If elected I would seek to join the technology task force that is currently reviewing these issues.


John F. Fagan

Watch out! We must guard against technology, and those who own and command the processes of it, becoming the masters of the profession. Substance and content in the brains of individual lawyers, over processes playing out on screens, or we are lost.


Gina Papageorgiou

It worries me from a protection of the public point of view. There are many platforms being developed which attempt to provide people with legal services on-line. However, these are not regulated and there is no assurance that the service provided is good and then no avenue for the public to pursue if they are harmed.


Caryma Sa’d

Artificial intelligence (AI) tools offer the promise of automating search processes and delivering summaries of pertinent information, thus saving their human users hours of schlepping through tedious documents. If information is properly managed so that breaches of privacy do not occur, AI in the workplace can result in a better outcome at a lower cost to the client. However, in the criminal justice system we should be wary of relying on AI without intensive scrutiny – the inputs rely on humans and are thus prone to error and bias. AI in the criminal justice system may require objective, well-reasoned humans to carefully evaluate the inputs and results. The LSO should keep itself apprised of developments in legal technology, and where appropriate establish guidelines for best practice.


Teresa Donnelly

I look forward to a report of the LSO Task Force on Technology chaired by Jacqueline Horvat.

Paul M. Cooper

The Law Society must take the lead to ensure that its membership understands and embraces new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence. As a profession, we must understand new technologies; when necessary, regulate them; and embrace and leverage them in order to become better service providers for our clients. In terms of the regulation of new technologies, we must ensure that we understand that there will be a need to regulate some of these new technologies, to ensure that we adequately protect and serve the public. In addition, we must ensure that new technologies are accessible across our membership, including to small firm practitioners. We must provide resources and advocate to make these new technologies accessible.


Megan Shortreed

The Law Society can do more to ensure lawyers are supported to meet the challenges of rapid technological changes. In regulating new technologies and business models, we need a healthy balance between efficiency in the delivery of legal services and protecting the public.

Selwyn A Pieters

AI is the way to go in 2019 and beyond. It does not operate in isolation from the human factor though.


Howard Goldblatt

This is being examined in the Technology Task Force, of which I am a member. We need to first identify and then address the challenges faced by the growing influence of AI in the delivery of legal services both from a competency and a regulatory perspective. There are a multitude of complex, interconnected issues which need to be examined and addressed in a careful manner.

E Patrick Shea, LSM

AI is going to change the way we practice and going to present both challenges and opportunities.  To the extent that AI can facilitate access to justice, then it should be adopted.  I do not support specific regulation by the LSO on the use of AI.  


Addison Cameron-Huff

Machine learning is already used in some products (e.g. Kira Systems) used by major law firms and companies. I see no danger in the use of “AI” so long as it is supervised by licensees and the provision of legal services meets all of the standards expected of licensees. 


Jerry B. Udell

We need to embrace technology but remember that our main goal is to serve our clients with integrity and knowledge. If AI makes legal service more affordable and expeditious we need to move forward with that. Ignoring AI is foolish


Orlando Da Silva, LSM

AI may be the way of the future in legal services, or maybe not.  In either case, legal professionals should be free to explore whether AI can assist them in providing better legal services to more clients at lower cost. Until AI is “proven” and widely adopted in the legal profession, it is premature for the LSO regulate its use.  The LSO should, in other words, maintain a “watch brief” with respect to the use of AI technologies in the law and resist the urge to impose regulations before it gains understanding.  In other words, the LSO should keep abreast of new and developing technologies, understand their pros and cons, together with their ability to reduce the cost of legal services, and insist that lawyers who adopt AI and other technologies (as well as those they supervise) must be competent in their use.  Lack of competence, resulting in harm to the public or the profession, will typically attract consequences through rules and regulations that already exist.


Claire Wilkinson

Technology continues to move forward, and lawyers will have opportunities to improve the efficiency of their practices through technology.  The key will be in regulating the use of technology to ensure that clients are still receiving adequate and thorough advice  from competent lawyers.


Andrew Spurgeon

Blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI) and other technological changes will disrupt the role of lawyers as trusted intermediaries in the social and economic relationships which make our society to function.  It is imperative that lawyers understand and harness these changes rather than be eclipsed by these changes.  The Law Society is uniquely positioned to aid lawyers individually and collectively as they evolve in these shifting environments as well as in shaping the environment in which lawyers operate.      


Mitchell Kowalski

It will become an important tool in the lawyer’s toolkit over the next 10 – 20 years.

The LSO should take a leadership role in guiding lawyers on all technology to provide better, more cost-effective and accessible legal services.


M. Steven Rastin

Artificial intelligence is coming to legal services. It has the potential to be highly disruptive and to place legal services jobs at risk. LSO cannot stand in the way of innovation, but it should take active steps to ensure the coming changes cannot proceed without proper procedural safeguards, or in the public interest, and do not interfere or impair the standards of learning, professional competence and professional conduct the public has a right to expect as it receives legal services.


Robert Burd

Technology should be looked at to facilitate great delivery of legal services at a more affordable rate


Jeff Cowan

This is coming if not already here. Lawyers need to understand how it will affect their practices and the LSO should lead on this as part of a prioritized Technology Task Force. However, it is not a matter of LSO regulation absent violation of client confidentiality or privilege, or becomes a Trojan horse of unauthorized practice. How it will be facilitate the justice systems must be monitored to ensure that any improvements in access to justice brought by AI are not compromised by algorithmic biases or privacy violations.


Etienne Esquega

It is already underway. The LSO as a regulator must make this a high priority to protect the interests of the public and maintain the integrity of the profession. Just think of how far technology has come in the past five years. While I am a big fan of technology, we must be cautious of it. Maybe the LSO should take an active role in approving software and technology that meets minimum standards?


Jonathan Rosenthal

Like most areas of new technology we must both keep an open mind while at the same time ensure our mandate of protecting the public interest is maintained.


Kristin Hutton

I will be out of a job.

Paul Le Vay

I believe the LSO must be sensitive to innovations and should support new technologies by thoughtful adaptation of rules and regulations to new ways of delivering legal services. Le Barreau doit être sensible à l`innovation et devrait appuyer les nouvelles technologies par l`adaptation intélligente de ses règlements aux façon nouvelles de livrer les services juridiques.

James Mays

It’s coming …… our profession and our society generally needs to prepare.

Gerard Paul Charette

AI might be useful. But it can be dangerous. Just ask Boeing Corporation. Its automatic ‘safety’ system just brought down 2 airliners.


Yavar Hameed

AI should be used to enhance service delivery and the LSO must play a pivotal in training lawyers how to adapt their practice to be more responsive to technology with a view of enhancing access to the courts and legal redress mechanisms.





Cheryl Siran

AI is not the answer to all, but these technologies are available now, particularly in the area of legal research.  The LSO should be investigating and promoting appropriate technologies and making them available in law libraries. 


Nathan Baker

Technology will always be useful in helping lawyers to provide better service. The regulation of such technology to make sure that legal advice comes from competent lawyers will be needed. Given the nature of law practice and limitations in our Court system adapting much simpler technology, this issue is not as pressing or scary as it is sometimes presented.


Cathy Corsetti

As a member of the Technology Working force this is a very important issue the Law Society is looking at. We need to be ahead of technology as it is advancing in the legal world.


Ian Speers

AI’s incursions into legal services should be feared no more than the incursion of faxes and computers in the 1980s and 1990s.  Rather, we need to embrace responsibly the benefits that can come from integrating predictive technology to allow lawyers to focus on the provision of more effective and efficient services to the public.  AI needs to be seen as an additional tool.  Any dramatic change of this sort forces the profession to reflect in Aristotelian terms on what is the essential and what is the accidental of their sphere of “legal practice.”  This will result in a change of what is routine.  But I believe the lawyer needs to fulfill a key role in this new model, and the LSO will need to adapt its oversight of the profession to reflect this reality, both in matters of professional competence and regulatory guidance


Rebecca Bromwich

We need to be careful that AI mechanisms do not over ride individualism of case by case, common law tradition. Having said that, we should leverage tech to support A2J.

Ryan Alford

I think we all need to consider this issue very carefully, although at the moment I have an open mind on the topic.


Malcolm M. Mercer

In my view, we are currently in the hype phase of the AI project. AI is being used in larger practices in predictive coding and in due diligence. AI that assesses legal issues has developed in the tax and employment areas. All of this is mostly in firms that serve big clients but not firms that serve ordinary people. There is relatively little issue with lawyers using AI in practice subject to quality assurance. Indeed, we should be encouraging innovation in practice including in using AI. That said, it is foreseeable that AI will be able to provide cost-effective legal services direct to the public in the years to come. I doubt that we can or should try to interfere with that. Whether the LSO should seek to regulate technological legal services or should remain a self-regulator of legal professions is an important and difficult question.


Barbara Murchie

AI will become more and more available whether from Canadian providers or elsewhere. The Technology Task Force is considering if and how to regulate either it or lawyers who use it. This is an important public protection issue. It is also an Acces to Justice opportunity.


Atrisha Lewis

The LSO needs to be at the forefront of this issue.


David Milosevic

AI in delivery of legal services is a reality. Recent decisions have emphasized that lawyers have a responsibility to use AI where doing so can reduce time and disbursements claimed. The LSO should assist licensees by providing access to CPDs that train lawyers in the use of AI in their practices.

Michael Allan Brown
A recent article where a lawyer was not awarded all of the costs in his litigation because the trial judge thought that the lawyer could have spent less time on the case with the assistance of legal software makes me think of how useful and time saving this tool is, for ourselves and for our clients. We can either save our clients money or be able to take on more clients by using this extra tool. Where I worked, there was more thought and time wasted on the proper font on an invoice than how much the invoice was. A generic invoice that is proper means more to me, than the prettiest invoice that took twice as long to prepare. And at the end of the day, did our client get any extra value out of the pretty invoice?


D. Jared Brown

The acronym has lost all meaning with overuse as a buzzword. AI is a technology that will be incorporated into the practice law along with all others. Licensees will be responsible to the public and the LSO for their use and outcomes from the technology as with all others before.

Deepa Tailor

Advancement in technology is inevitable in all professions. AI will change how we practice law. As a profession, we need to ensure that legal technology available to the public still meets the standards of ethics that we as a profession ascribe to. To that end, I support the use of AI for furthering access to justice and streamlining our inefficient court system.


Geoff Pollock

Innovation is good, but requires the supervision of a lawyer.

Tanya Walker

Technological advancements are an important issue in the regulation of our profession. The LSO’s Technology Task Force is considering how AI technology can and should be used in private practice. This particular issue is important for the protection of the public in terms of security and competence. However, it may also be an opportunity to provide greater access to justice if effectively managed and regulated.


John Arkelian

I need to learn more about this issue before commenting.

Sylvie Patenaude

AI will not put us out of work. When it comes to the practice of law, the one overriding factor in the solicitor client relationship is exactly that: the relationship. AI and technology have their place and should allow us to become more efficient – which is in the best interest of our clients. But the clients will not quickly abandon the relationship of trust and experience that is created over time for an AI only model.

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