Welcome to your daily briefing for May 26, 2023. Here's what happened in Legal Tech Yesterday.
TLDR; Listen instead:
Trends from yesterday
In today's legal technology news, Thomson Reuters has unveiled its plans to incorporate generative AI and chat functionality into its legal products. The company aims to integrate chat functionality into its legal research and workflow products, allowing users to engage with Practical Law content through a chat interface. Thomson Reuters also announced a partnership with Microsoft, integrating its AI-powered products within Microsoft 365 Copilot. Another legal tech startup, Spellbook, has raised significant funding to drive hiring, development, and expansion. The company's AI contract drafting product, which works directly within Microsoft Word, has gained popularity among legal teams. Additionally, legal technology companies like Litera and Agiloft have made key appointments to strengthen their teams and drive innovation.
One prominent trend in the legal industry is the integration of generative AI tools, such as ChatGPT and GPT-4, into legal software platforms. These AI chatbots provide conversational responses to inquiries and offer advantages like document drafting and idea brainstorming. However, concerns about factual inaccuracies or "hallucinations" call for careful crafting of prompts and understanding AI's limitations. The adoption of project management tools like Asana and Trello by lawyers is also on the rise, allowing them to manage workflows efficiently and visualize work-in-progress. Cloud-based practice management software options are gaining traction, automating administrative tasks and improving overall efficiency for law firms.
Thomson Reuters' incorporation of generative AI and chat functionality into its legal products demonstrates a commitment to leading AI development in the legal market. By integrating with Microsoft 365 Copilot, the company aims to provide advanced AI capabilities across its productivity suite. This partnership has the potential to enhance legal research and workflow processes, making them more efficient and user-friendly.
The funding raised by Spellbook indicates a growing demand for AI contract drafting and review tools. The use of GPT-4 and other large language models integrated within Microsoft Word enables lawyers to streamline the contract drafting process, saving time and increasing productivity. With a significant number of waitlist sign-ups, Spellbook's offering has gained attention from legal teams seeking faster and more efficient contract management solutions.
The appointments of Greg Ingino as Chief Technology Officer at Litera and Nicole Milstead as Chief Marketing Officer at Agiloft signify the importance of strong leadership in driving innovation and growth within legal technology companies. Ingino's experience in enterprise-scale integration and Milstead's expertise in go-to-market strategy will contribute to their respective companies' product development and market positioning.
Overall, the legal technology industry continues to evolve with the integration of AI, project management tools, and cloud-based practice management software. The adoption of these technologies offers significant benefits such as increased efficiency, streamlined workflows, and improved client service. However, careful consideration of privacy, confidentiality, and AI's limitations remains crucial to ensure ethical and accurate use of these tools in the legal field.
Generative AI has been making inroads into various industries for a while now, and the legal sector is no exception. This technology involves training chatbots to respond to inquiries in an informative and conversational manner. While there is little doubt about the benefits of artificial intelligence chatbots, there are some concerns as well. One of the most common concerns is that chatbots may sprinkle their responses with factual inaccuracies, referred to as "hallucinations." As a result, clients may receive misleading advice and information, and ethical issues may arise. Therefore, legal professionals must carefully craft prompts and keep in mind the AI's limitations, including knowledge and date cutoffs. One way legal professionals can benefit from generative AI is to reduce the pain of time-consuming tasks. For example, AI chatbots can be helpful in drafting documents, forms, and templates, summarizing articles, correspondence, laws, regulations, and cases, contract review and analysis, litigation preparation, and brainstorming ideas. However, it's worth noting that the benefits of AI come with certain risks, too. The chatbots may make assumptions or provide inaccurate information about a legal matter, which may affect the outcome of a case and put clients' privacy at risk. Therefore, legal professionals must fully understand how any data queries are handled and who has access to them.
Legal technology company Spellbook has raised $10.9m in funding to support hiring, development and expansion. The announcement coincided with the company's rebranding from Rally Legal. Spellbook's AI-driven contract drafting product, which uses GPT-4 and fine-tuned language models, operates within Microsoft Word and allows practitioners to draft and review contracts up to four times faster than by traditional means. The funding was led by Moxxie Ventures and supported by Thomson Reuters Ventures, Inovia Capital, The LegalTech Fund and Bling Capital. Managing director at Thomson Reuters Ventures, Tamara Steffens, noted the company's commitment to investing in generative AI to help with innovation in the sector. "Thomson Reuters plans to explore the application of Spellbook's generative AI technology to our industry leading, authoritative content to deliver customer value," she said. The company said that it already had over 600 legal teams using its product, with another 53,000 on the waiting list.
Thomson Reuters has revealed further details about its plans to incorporate generative AI and chat functionality into its legal products, during a presentation by David Wong, chief product officer. The company plans to incorporate chat functionality into its legal research and workflow products by the second half of this year, and will begin inviting select customers to test prototypes even sooner. Thomson Reuters also announced a partnership with Microsoft by which its AI-powered products will be integrated within Microsoft 365 Copilot, Microsoft’s tool for providing advanced AI capabilities across its productivity suite. The company offered previews of its planned integrations, which are all still early prototypes, to members of the media. Thomson Reuters (TR) is developing a chat functionality for its legal research and workflow products, which will be integrated in the second half of this year. The feature, called Practical Law Dynamic, will allow users to engage with Practical Law content through a chat interface. The prototype shows a dual-pane interface with the chat on the left and references or related data on the right. TR also plans to use generative AI within HighQ to enhance automation of workflows and pulling of information from different sources. The company will provide more details and updates in the coming weeks and months, and selected customers will be invited to test the prototypes. TR is committed to leading the development of generative AI for the legal market.
Generative AI tools, such as ChatGPT, Google Bard, and Microsoft Bing Chat, are artificial intelligence chatbots trained on broad datasets that can respond to various inquiries conversationally. However, they sometimes provide factual inaccuracies, referred to as "hallucinations." Legal software platforms are increasingly incorporating these tools into their systems, offering significant advantages to lawyers, such as drafting documents, summarizing articles, and brainstorming ideas. To reduce risk and increase accuracy, it's crucial to keep client confidentiality top of mind and understand how data queries are handled and who has access to them. If unable to adjust the product's privacy settings, refrain from including any confidential client information when submitting queries to the chatbot. The blog post discusses the importance of carefully crafting prompts to obtain the desired response when using AI. The key elements to a successful query include specificity, context, instruction, and proper formatting. It is also important to understand AI's limitations, including knowledge and date cutoffs. The post recommends using tools like Perfect Prompt to transform basic requests into detailed and contextual prompts. The reader is cautioned against falling for hallucinations.
Legal project management has gained popularity in the past decade, with industry-specific techniques being developed to improve client service and efficiency. Lawyers often find themselves in project management roles despite not receiving formal training in the field. Project management tools, such as Asana, can help lawyers manage their ongoing and chaotic workflows. Asana is based on the Kanban management system, which allows users to visualize work-in-progress. This blog post discusses four different software tools that can be helpful for lawyers and law firms. Asana is a project management tool that can break down complex projects into actionable tasks and allow users to prioritize them. Trello is another project management tool that uses a Kanban-style board to track progress and manage tasks. Evernote is a note-taking tool that can be used for legal research, productivity tasks, and case management. Arteria AI is an end-to-end contract management tool developed by Deloitte's AI Factory to streamline the drafting process. The blog post discusses various software tools that can help attorneys streamline their work and improve productivity. Arteria provides templates that can input contextual data, allowing for faster creation of contracts. TrialPad is an affordable project management app that helps lawyers organize, annotate, and present documents in court or during video conferences. Practice management software like MerusCase automates bureaucratic tasks associated with legal practice by linking actions, documents, and workflows to specific cases. These tools can help attorneys save time and improve their workflow. The blog post discusses four different cloud-based practice management software options for law firms: MerusCase, Clio, MyCase, and CASEpeer. MerusCase offers batch scanning, predictive search, and auto-population tools for digitizing and completing court forms and legal documents, with specialty features for family law, employment, and workers’ compensation. Clio consolidates client intake, contact management, calendaring, and timekeeping tasks, with a robust infrastructure for client intake reporting. MyCase specializes in accounting aspects of project management, centralizing financial data alongside case files and offering bank-grade security. CASEpeer is tailored for personal injury attorneys, with case management, workflow automation, document storage tools, and a settlement monitoring system for tracking offers and demands in real-time. New technologies are being incorporated into the legal industry, allowing for increased efficiency and remote work capabilities. However, there is still resistance to certain technologies, such as cloud computing, due to concerns over confidentiality and security. The article emphasizes the importance of weighing the costs and benefits of new legal technologies.
Spellbook, formerly known as Rally Legal, has raised $10.9m in funding to drive hiring, development and expansion. The company's AI contract drafting product, which uses GPT-4 and other generative AI models to speed up contract drafting and review, works directly within Microsoft Word. The product has been used by more than 600 legal teams, while another 53,000 potential customers have signed up for the waitlist. The funding round was led by Moxxie Ventures, with participation from Thomson Reuters Ventures, Inovia Capital, The LegalTech Fund, Bling Capital and others. Spellbook, a legal tech startup, has announced that it has raised funding to double the size of its team this year. The company plans to hire engineers, AI experts, lawyers, and product specialists to help onboard its waitlist. The funding will also be used to speed up innovation and develop new functionality for customers.
Legal technology company, Litera, has appointed Greg Ingino as its new Chief Technology Officer (CTO). In his new role, Ingino will lead the engineering, dev ops, architecture, R&D operations, QA, IT, and security teams across the company to deliver on its product portfolio. Ingino was previously CTO at physical therapy software supplier WebPT, where he was responsible for rebuilding and transforming the organisation to achieve enterprise scale through the integration of several acquisitions. Ingino will report to CEO Sheryl Hoskins and will be responsible for driving Litera's innovation into new spaces and technologies.
Agiloft, the California-based contract lifecycle management provider, has appointed Nicole Milstead as its new chief marketing officer. Milstead was previously CMO of ERP software provider FinancialForce and has held numerous leadership positions at Oracle over a 14-year period. Eric Laughlin, Agiloft’s CEO, said that Milstead's expertise in go-to-market strategy, account-based experience, and demand generation would help the company drive growth and align sales and marketing. The appointment comes a year after Agiloft appointed Kerry Desberg as its previous CMO.
Legal AI company Spellbook (formerly Rally) has raised $10.9m in a funding round led by Moxxie Ventures, with participation from Thomson Reuters Ventures, Inovia Capital, The LegalTech Fund, Bling Capital, N49P, Concrete Ventures, Good News Ventures, and Venture Newfoundland & Labrador. The start-up uses OpenAI's GPT-4 and other large language models to integrate with Microsoft Word, allowing lawyers to draft and review contracts up to four times faster. The company has over 53,000 waitlist sign-ups for its early access offering. Thomson Reuters plans to explore the application of Spellbook's generative AI technology to deliver customer value. Meanwhile, Travers Smith LLP has launched its latest open source project, YCNBot, in collaboration with 273 Ventures, aimed at integrating with GPT to facilitate generative chat. Travers' legal technology team created YCNBot, which is available for anyone to download and deploy through an open-source license, enabling law firms and other organizations to replace the consumer-facing ChatGPT with a chatbot that plugs into Enterprise API's of Microsoft and OpenAI. LawBase, a legal case and matter management software system, has also added generative AI capabilities to its platform. LawBase has added a new voice-typing feature to its platform, enabling users to search for information using voice commands. The feature is designed to save time and allow users to access important information quickly. Meanwhile, Eigen Technologies has announced the global availability of its new integration with OpenAI's GPT. The integration allows Eigen customers to use GPT alongside Eigen's proprietary machine learning for intelligent automation and document processing purposes. Users will be able to choose between using GPT or any other large language models as an alternative to BERT to enhance Eigen's Instant Answers and extraction capabilities. LiquidText, an intelligent notetaking and document analysis provider, has integrated with ChatGPT and OpenAI tools to allow users to ask questions and create reference citations about their project documents. The ChatGPT integration uses the tools to analyze the documents and provide answers to users' questions. Meanwhile, the OpenAI semantic analysis tool suggests a citation and links to the parts of the document that users were likely taking notes on. These features are available to LiquidText subscribers on a pay-as-you-go credit basis and are currently in beta for iPad subscribers only.
Agiloft, a global provider of no-code contract lifecycle management (CLM) software, has appointed Nicole Milstead as its Chief Marketing Officer. Milstead brings over 25 years of experience in leading enterprise B2B marketing teams and driving growth for industry leaders such as FinancialForce, Oracle, and SAP. In her new role, she will advance Agiloft's marketing strategy, drive demand for the software, and help cement the brand's position as a CLM market leader. Eric Laughlin, Agiloft CEO, expressed his delight at Milstead's appointment, saying that her expertise and experience would help the company drive growth and further align sales and marketing. The writer expresses excitement about joining the team and is looking forward to utilizing their experience to contribute to the growth of the business. They hold a master's degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a bachelor's degree from Lafayette College.