We are back. What happened in Legal Tech last week?

Lexsoft Systems launched a budget-friendly AI solution for law firms, and DeepJudge raised $10.7M. Adobe faced legal scrutiny but released new AI features. Here is all you missed in legal tech last week.

We are back. What happened in Legal Tech last week?

Welcome new Law Tech subscribers. We've been absent for a while, but we are back!

If you are new to Law Tech, we are your source for cutting through the noise in the ever-changing world of legal technology! We bring you the highlights of the latest developments in legal tech. Through a weekly review and podcast on Monday, and quick updates through the week.

We live though the "tech" in our name - while the news is curated by humans, Law Tech is written, read, and produced by AI. 🤖

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Key Stories

We Need To Talk About GenAI Accuracy

Recent developments highlight the growing influence of generative AI in the legal sector, particularly concerning small and medium-sized law firms. Lexsoft Systems launched an accessible T3 GenAI knowledge management solution, designed to automate knowledge capture and classification affordably. Powered by a Microsoft OpenAI tenant, this tool can significantly elevate these firms' KM capabilities without substantial investment (Lexsoft Harnesses Gen AI to Make Knowledge Management Capability Accessible for Small and Medium-Sized Law Firms - Legal Technology News).

Conversely, DeepJudge, a legal AI startup, has secured $10.7 million in seed funding and expanded its leadership team with industry veterans like ex-Kira’s Obenski. Their AI uses a unique RAG-based retrieval system to provide efficient access to internal legal documents, emphasizing transparency and tool utility over traditional accuracy metrics (DeepJudge, KM-Focused AI Startup Bags $10.7m, Hires Ex-Kira’s Obenski - Artificial Lawyer).

Meanwhile, the adoption of generative AI seems to be creating divides within the legal industry. Larger firms, with more resources, are advancing faster in AI integration, whereas smaller firms lag, mainly due to limited knowledge and resources. This widening gap urges bar associations and AI vendors to provide necessary training and resources to help these smaller entities catch up (Is Gen AI Creating A Divide Among Law Firms Of Haves and Have Nots? - LawSites).

eBrevia has re-entered the competitive legal tech market with renewed vigor under the leadership of its co-founder Adam Nguyen. Since reacquiring eBrevia, Nguyen has incorporated LLM capabilities into the company's existing tech and introduced DraftPro, aiming to set a new standard for contract creation and management (The Return of eBrevia – Interview with CEO, Adam Nguyen - Artificial Lawye).

Despite a slow start to the year, recent investment activities signal a bullish trend in legal tech funding. Over $414 million was invested in the last 30 days alone, indicating robust investor confidence in the sector's future growth (A Slow Year for Legal Tech Funding? Over $400 Million Invested in the Last 30 Days Suggests Otherwise - LawSites).

Other Notable Developments

Adobe is facing a lawsuit from the US Department of Justice, which alleges the company hides early termination fees to trap subscribers. Adobe, however, claims transparency in its subscription processes. Concurrently, Adobe has rolled out new AI-powered features in Adobe Acrobat to enhance document creation and insights (Adobe faces US federal government lawsuit alleging it hides termination fees to trap subscribers - Legal IT Insider).

Bundledocs, a cloud-based document bundling software, now serves over 100 of the UK’s Top 200 law firms. This milestone highlights their continued expansion and effectiveness in streamlining document preparation and collaboration for legal professionals (Bundledocs hits milestone of serving over 100 of the UK’s Top 200 law firms - Legal IT Insider).

Noteworthy innovations include ProSearch's integration of Intelligent Voice, enhancing discovery data management by converting audio and video files into searchable text. This partnership improves both the efficiency and accuracy of handling multimedia legal content (ProSearch Adds Intelligent Voice to Its Arsenal of Industry-leading Tools to Optimize Discovery - Legal Technology News).

The Legal Tech Talent Network launched a contract staffing division aimed at meeting the diverse staffing needs of law firms and corporations without the cost of permanent hires. This agile solution promises to provide law firms flexible and scalable staffing options (Legal Tech Talent Network Launches Contract Staffing Division - Legal Technology News).

Finally, Sirion's acquisition of Eigen aims to enhance its AI-driven Contract Lifecycle Management platform with advanced data extraction capabilities. This strategic move is expected to significantly improve Sirion's ability to handle varied document types and bolster its contract intelligence offerings (Inside the Eigen / Sirion Deal: Multi-Modal + Multi-Model - Artificial Lawyer).

Want to dive deeper into a story? Here are the original link to the stories with summaries to aid review.

Key stories

We Need To Talk About GenAI Accuracy (Artificial Lawyer)

The move towards integrating Generative AI (genAI) within the legal sector marks a significant technological advancement, yet it faces a critical obstacle: accuracy. The precision of AI outputs is fundamental to its utility, as underscored by David Wang at Legal Innovators California. Should genAI generate erroneous outputs, it can hinder rather than enhance legal workflows, posing a substantial operational risk. The issue isn't new; early AI tools in law also struggled with precision, necessitating extensive human oversight. As evidenced by reactions to the Stanford HAI study, the legal community is grappling with trust and reliability concerns. Accuracy metrics, like Recall and Precision, do not fully capture the varied requirements across different legal tasks such as case citations versus stylistic document drafting. The necessity for uniform standards is clear, and industry leaders like Thomson Reuters and LexisNexis are spearheading efforts to establish shared accuracy benchmarks. However, widespread acceptance and adherence to these benchmarks are essential for consistency. Without resolving these accuracy issues, genAI risks failing to achieve its transformative potential in the legal field.

Lexsoft Harnesses Gen AI to Make Knowledge Management Capability Accessible for Small and Medium-Sized Law Firms (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Lexsoft Systems has unveiled a new iteration of its T3 GenAI knowledge management solution, designed specifically for small and medium-sized law firms. This ready-to-deploy, streamlined version leverages generative AI to automate the knowledge management process, making advanced KM capabilities accessible even to firms that lack extensive resources. By integrating with the iManage Work document and email management system, T3 GenAI simplifies the capture, collation, and classification of knowledge, significantly reducing manual effort. This democratization of technology is poised to level the playing field, enabling smaller firms to efficiently harness their collective expertise. Lexsoft’s approach emphasizes scalability and accessibility, offering a critical competitive advantage in an increasingly tech-driven legal landscape. The solution requires a Microsoft OpenAI tenant and runs on Microsoft's secure Azure environment, ensuring both functionality and security. With this move, Lexsoft Systems is not only expanding the reach of AI-driven KM solutions but also signaling a shift towards more inclusive technology adoption in the legal sector.

DeepJudge, KM-Focused AI Startup Bags $10.7m, Hires Ex-Kira’s Obenski (Artificial Lawyer)

DeepJudge, a Swiss legal AI startup, has secured $10.7 million in an oversubscribed seed round, with the addition of Steve Obenski from Kira Systems as interim Chief Strategy Officer to drive U.S. expansion. Founded by AI experts and former Google engineers, DeepJudge aims to leverage proprietary search technology to harness law firms' vast knowledge bases and document management systems (DMS). This focus on high-quality retrieval sets it apart in a market already crowded with advanced KM tools like iManage, NetDocuments, and Henchman. The company's CEO, Paulina Grnarova, emphasizes the importance of utility over mere accuracy, promoting a transparent, human-in-the-loop RAG (Retrieval-Augmented Generation) process. While this approach may enhance user trust, the lack of comprehensive accuracy benchmarks could hinder prospective buyers from making informed decisions. Ultimately, the subjective nature of "usefulness" might vary widely among legal professionals, making it more challenging to establish a universal metric for success in this competitive arena.

Is Gen AI Creating A Divide Among Law Firms Of Haves and Have Nots? (LawSites)

The reflection on trial lawyers' engagement with generative AI in litigation reveals a striking gap between the perceived ubiquity of this technology in legal discourse and its actual usage among practitioners. This disparity is particularly prominent among smaller firms and solo practitioners, who generally lack the resources and innovation infrastructure of their larger counterparts. While generative AI holds promise in leveling the playing field, especially through tools like Clearbrief, the current landscape sees larger firms at an advantage due to their capacity to incorporate and manage these technologies. The hesitation among smaller firms largely stems from a lack of familiarity and the perceived complexity of these AI tools. Moreover, the focus of legal tech development heavily favors big law firms, potentially exacerbating the existing imbalance. This suggests a critical need for bar associations and tech vendors to provide targeted training and affordable solutions for smaller practices. By doing so, the legal profession can ensure a more equitable integration of generative AI, preventing a deepening divide and harnessing its benefits responsibly and profitably across all firm sizes.

The Return of eBrevia – Interview with CEO, Adam Nguyen (Artificial Lawyer)

The resurgence of eBrevia, led by co-founder Adam Nguyen, marks a fascinating turn in the legal tech landscape. Despite its establishment in 2011 and pioneering role in natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning (ML) for contract analysis, the company faced existential challenges after its 2018 acquisition by Donnelley Financial Solutions (DFIN). Nguyen's return and buyback in 2023 inject new vigor, underscored by integrating large language models (LLMs) and launching the innovative product DraftPro. This strategic pivot aims to transcend mere contract extraction to encompass full lifecycle management, including drafting and compliance. eBrevia’s dual identity—as both a revered veteran and an energized startup—positions it uniquely in a market now crowded with post-ChatGPT AI entrants. With a foundation of deep technological capability and a renewed vision, eBrevia is poised to navigate and potentially dominate the evolving legal AI sector.

A Slow Year for Legal Tech Funding? Over $400 Million Invested in the Last 30 Days Suggests Otherwise (LawSites)

The legal tech investment landscape for 2024 has seen a fluctuating trend, initially lagging with only $356 million raised, starkly lower than the $871 million of the previous year. However, recent data indicates a promising turnaround, with legal tech companies amassing a notable $414 million in just the past 30 days. This resurgence suggests a potential for the sector to surpass 2023's figures. The disparity between the early-year totals from the Crunchbase report dated June 13 and the subsequent investment surge highlights a pivotal shift in investor sentiment. Notably, these figures exclude substantial but undisclosed financing received by companies like LawPro.ai and Arcadia Finance, hinting at even higher overall activity. This evolving trend underscores a renewed confidence and growing interest in the legal tech sector, potentially setting the stage for heightened innovation and growth in the latter half of the year.

All the rest

Adobe faces US federal government lawsuit alleging it hides termination fees to trap subscribers (Legal IT Insider)

The US Department of Justice sued Adobe for allegedly enrolling consumers in subscription plans without clear disclosure of commitments and early termination fees. Adobe denies these claims, stating their processes are transparent and cancellations are simple. Concurrently, Adobe introduced new AI-powered features in Adobe Acrobat for improved document creation and insights.

Product Walk Through: Thomson Reuters CoCounsel (Legal IT Insider)

Valerie McConnell from Thomson Reuters showcases CoCounsel, a generative AI research tool that analyzes legal documents and identifies trends. The platform efficiently assesses contracts, witness statements, and translates documents, offering quick insights. McConnell also addresses retrieval augmented generation, security, and bias protection in a discussion with Legal IT Insider.

What Are Your Non-Negotiables? (Articles, Tips and Tech for Law Firms and Lawyers)

Brooke Lively advises lawyers on selling their firms by identifying non-negotiables and creating a "deal-killer letter" to streamline the process. She emphasizes the importance of team and culture for a smooth transition and successful sale. Early clarity on these factors helps avoid future regrets and ensures a profitable outcome.

Handout from my AI Prompting Workshop at the Great Lakes Legal Conference (DennisKennedy.Blog)

Dennis Kennedy led an AI prompting workshop at the 2024 State Bar of Michigan’s Great Lakes Legal Conference, earning praise from attendees, including four Michigan Supreme Court Justices. He highlighted the growing interest in AI programs at the Michigan State University Center for Law, Technology & Innovation. Kennedy also shared his workshop materials and promoted his blog, now part of the LexBlog network.

Bundledocs hits milestone of serving over 100 of the UK’s Top 200 law firms (Legal IT Insider)

Bundledocs, a cloud-based document bundling software, now serves over 100 of the UK's Top 200 law firms and has more than 1,500 customers in 34 countries. The software integrates with legal tools to streamline document preparation and collaboration. Recent hires include Miles Osborne as global director of customer success and Joshua Davies in customer support.

DeepJudge raises $10.7m seed funding and launches gen AI Knowledge Assistant (Legal IT Insider)

Swiss legal tech startup DeepJudge raised $10.7 million in seed funding led by Coatue. They launched an AI-powered Knowledge Assistant for law firms, enhancing document retrieval and integrating with Microsoft 365 and Copilot. The funding will support product development, commercial expansion, and recent key hires to drive growth.

Every Lawyer In Texas Now Has Free Access to Smokeball’s Trust Accounting and Billing Software (LawSites)

The State Bar of Texas has teamed up with Smokeball to provide free trust accounting and billing software to 111,000 Texas lawyers. This initiative is designed to help solo and small law firms stay compliant and efficient. Texas follows Florida in offering this benefit.

How LLMs and Generative AI Can Transform Legal Services (Articles, Tips and Tech for Law Firms and Lawyers)

Large language models and generative AI are revolutionizing the legal industry by enhancing efficiency and accuracy in tasks like e-discovery and contract drafting. Challenges such as limited context windows, data security, and potential inaccuracies need to be addressed. Collaboration between tech providers and legal professionals is essential to maximize benefits and mitigate risks.

Idea Therapy: Strategic Innovation Counseling for Law Departments (DennisKennedy.Blog)

Dennis Kennedy introduces "Idea Therapy" for law department innovation leaders. The service includes a diagnostic meeting, strategic advice, and a Q&A session, all within two weeks. Priced at $9,500, it aims for quick, practical outcomes without long-term consulting commitments.

Veritext Legal Solutions Announces Release of the “Exploring Emerging Trends in AI” Roundtable (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Veritext Legal Solutions released a video roundtable on AI trends in their "Innovations in Legal Technology" series. Experts discussed AI's impact on court reporting, security, and accuracy. The video, produced with Spectrum360, is available in shorter clips.

Legal Tech Talent Network Launches Contract Staffing Division (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Legal Tech Talent Network has introduced a contract staffing division to supply interim professionals for legal roles. This service offers flexible staffing solutions for law firms, corporations, and service providers. Founder David A. Netzer emphasizes its capacity to meet diverse needs without the expense of permanent hires.

ProSearch Adds Intelligent Voice to Its Arsenal of Industry-leading Tools to Optimize Discovery (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

ProSearch has partnered with Intelligent Voice to enhance discovery data management. This AI tool converts audio and video files into searchable text, improving efficiency and accuracy. The collaboration addresses the rising demand for effective handling of audio and video content in legal cases.

CLIENTSFirst Consulting Announces CRM Success Survey (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

CLIENTSFirst Consulting has introduced a CRM Success Survey for law firms to identify CRM technology challenges. The survey aims to enhance CRM effectiveness and provide strategic insights. Participants will get early access to results and a gift card for completing the survey.

Legal Tech Company Bundledocs Now Serves Over 100 of the UK’s Top 200 Legal Firms (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Bundledocs, a cloud-based document bundling software, now supports over 100 of the UK’s Top 200 Law Firms. The company focuses on strong security, seamless integration, and adapting to client and regulatory needs. Recent hires, like Joshua Davies in Customer Support, underscore their dedication to excellent service.

RobinAI Launches New Product Line “Robin AI Reports” (Legal Tech Blog)

Robin AI has introduced Robin AI Reports, an AI tool for automating due diligence and contract analysis, cutting time and costs for legal teams. Launched at London’s LegalTechTalk Conference, it quickly generates detailed reports for M&A, IPOs, and asset management. The tool aims to democratize legal services with a free version to increase accessibility.

Information governance: The challenges of sprawling data (Legal IT Insider)

LegalRM CEO Chris Giles discussed significant challenges in law firm information governance at BLTF. He emphasized the importance of AI and cybersecurity, focusing on data reduction and timely destruction. These measures are critical for managing sensitive information effectively.

Inside the Eigen / Sirion Deal: Multi-Modal + Multi-Model (Artificial Lawyer)

Sirion acquired Eigen to boost its AI-driven Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) platform with advanced data extraction capabilities. This integration enhances Sirion's ability to manage diverse document types and improve contract intelligence. Eigen's expertise and brand will remain under Sirion, aiming to lead the evolving CLM market.

On LawNext: Cofounder Jason Tashea on the First Year and Uncertain Future of Georgetown’s First-of-Its-Kind Judicial Innovation Fellowship (LawSites)

Georgetown University Law Center's Judicial Innovation Fellowship places technologists in courts to enhance public access to justice. Despite successful projects in Kansas, Tennessee, and Utah, the program faces funding challenges. Program director Jason Tashea discusses its impact and the need for court innovation on the LawNext podcast.

Ontario government introduces new bill for strengthening cybersecurity and for responsible AI (Inside Tech Law)

Ontario has introduced Bill 194 to boost cybersecurity and regulate AI in the public sector. The bill will establish the Enhancing Digital Security and Trust Act, 2024. It will also amend the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA).

AI regulation in the UK: Will the next government introduce AI legislation? (Inside Tech Law)

The government relies on non-binding principles to regulate AI. Existing regulators enforce these principles using their current authority. There are no plans to introduce new AI-specific legislation.

Building a Stronger Case: The Power of AI in Financial Fraud Investigations (Articles, Tips and Tech for Law Firms and Lawyers)

AI-powered verified financial intelligence (VFI) automates data preparation and analysis, streamlining financial fraud investigations. This technology reduces time and costs, while enhancing accuracy and insight for legal teams. Centralized databases and visualization tools improve collaboration and case presentation.

Guest post: It’s Time to Start Preparing Your Company for the European Union’s AI Act (Legal IT Insider)

The EU AI Act, approved on March 13, 2024, creates a legal framework categorizing AI systems into four risk levels: unacceptable, high, limited, and minimal. Companies must comply with strict regulations or face significant fines. Businesses should quickly assess their AI systems' risk levels and establish governance structures to ensure compliance.

Missed Legaltech Week Last Week? (I Know I Did.) No Worries, Here’s the Recording. Among the Topics: Harvey, DoNotPay, AAA and Musk (LawSites)

The recent Legaltech Week episode covered several key topics. Panelists discussed DoNotPay, Harvey, AAA's AI ClauseBuilder, AI's impact on law firms, and Musk's OpenAI lawsuit. Missed episodes can be accessed via podcast or YouTube.

KPMG Law partners with Shieldpay as payments provider (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

KPMG Law UK has partnered with Shieldpay to offer secure payment services for corporate and real estate transactions. Shieldpay's platform helps mitigate risks and improve efficiency. This collaboration aims to enhance client service and support KPMG Law's growth.

The Power of Convergence: Harnessing AI and IG for Legal Excellence – Part I (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

The article discusses how information governance (IG) enhances artificial intelligence (AI) in legal practices. It stresses the importance of data quality, accessibility, compliance, and security for effective AI models. A step-by-step guide is provided to help law firms implement an IG framework that boosts efficiency, compliance, and innovation.

LITI Launches 2024 Legal PMS Software Report (Legal IT Insider)

Neil Cameron's report examines global practice management and enterprise resource planning systems in the legal tech market. It provides a history, development overview, and a detailed vendor and software comparison. The report, which includes vendor profiles, is available for download upon sign-up.

Document Management Doesn’t Have to Be Stressful (Articles, Tips and Tech for Law Firms and Lawyers)

CosmoLex provides legal practice management software to streamline document workflows and reduce costs. Key features include mobile cloud access, matter-level permissions, and document automation. Law firms benefit from savings on printing and data entry with a cost-effective monthly subscription.

Computational Law: Past, Present, and Future (LawTech.Asia)

The first Computational Law Conference (CLAWCON) took place at Singapore Management University. Experts discussed how computational law can enhance legal processes and compliance in Singapore. Keynote speakers emphasized practical applications and the importance of human-technology collaboration for improved accuracy and efficiency.

Generative AI for Smart Legal Professionals by John Tredennick & Dr. Webber Released – Second Edition (Free E-Book) (WardblawG)

John Tredennick, CEO of Merlin Search Technologies, released a free e-book titled "Generative AI for Smart Legal Professionals," co-authored with Dr. Webber. The book introduces Large Language Models and their applications in legal practice, offering both theoretical insights and practical uses. It also addresses data security and includes real-world examples.

Why Qualifications (including the LLB Law Degree) are Still Worth the Time and Money (WardblawG)

Investing in a law degree can boost earnings but doesn't ensure a high-paying job, with many graduates in lower-level roles. Flexibility in career goals and obtaining recognized qualifications, such as those from NALP, improve job prospects. Malcolm Trotter highlights aligning education with career paths and the importance of credible qualifications in the legal field.

Why Solicitors should support Alternative Business Structures at the AGM of the Law Society of Scotland on Thursday (The Time Blawg)

The Law Society of Scotland is debating whether to support Alternative Business Structures (ABS) for legal services. Proponents believe ABS will benefit consumers and modernize the profession, while opponents fear it will undermine traditional solicitor services. The upcoming AGM vote will significantly impact the future of legal services in Scotland.