Disco, Baker Botts, and Uplevel Ops - here's what happened last week in legal tech

Legal tech sees leadership shifts, AI adoption risks, ethical framework development needs, and the formation of an AI Practice Team. Global data standardization, diversity, and inclusion initiatives mark trends in legal tech sector.

Disco, Baker Botts, and Uplevel Ops - here's what happened last week in legal tech

Welcome to your Law Tech weekly briefing covering what happened in legal tech last week.

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Core briefing

Takeaways from the key stories

Each week, our human editors highlight a number of "key stories" because they are interesting, impactful, or something that is simply worth paying attention to. Here is what we learned from those stories...

CS Disco confirmed a change in leadership as CEO Kiwi Camara steps down, followed by an interim appointment of Scott Hill. A McKinley survey uncovered potential risks, including unintended consequences and security issues, associated with rising generative AI adoption. Meanwhile, due to the lack of clear standards for addressing these risks, businesses are encouraged to establish their own ethical and security measures. SALI Alliance aims at global legal data standardization through multilingual legal tags. Baker Botts announced the formation of an AI Practice Team, further emphasizing the growing involvement of AI in the legal industry. Finally, the value of generative AI and the potential massive impact that GenAI could have on productivity and cost savings in legal departments were addressed in podcasts by UpLevel Ops and a white paper by Facto.

Trends

From the key activities of the past week, an undeniable emphasis has been on the rise and increasing importance of AI in the legal industry. This trend is demonstrated by the formation of Baker Botts' AI Practice Team dedicated to serving AI-related legal needs, SALI’s push for global data standardization accommodating AI functionalities, and discussions around GenAI tools. These AI tools are anticipated to automate tasks and significantly enhance productivity, potentially affecting up to 80% of legal expenditure. A noticeable trend is the urgent need to build ethical and security frameworks as risks related to AI use emerge, with a focus on transparency, privacy and responsibility.

Analysis

For those in the legal profession, these developments indicate both challenges and opportunities. On one hand, the prevalent rise of AI presents a potential shift in the landscape of legal services. This means firms may need to orient their practices to accommodate innovative AI technologies like GenAI or ChatGPT, which can save money and increase productivity. Consequently, lawyers should also brace for the impact of AI on traditional roles and be ready to upskill or adapt. On the other hand, the increasing intersection of AI and legal services also introduces risk elements. Legal professionals must become versed in AI risk management in light of the revelation from the McKinsey survey. It will be crucial for law firms and legal departments to establish or strengthen their ethical and security frameworks and to stay ahead of evolving AI-related regulations. Lastly, the push for global standardized legal data from the SALI Alliance confirms the need for international cooperation for the seamless global adoption of AI in law. This is an opportunity for firms to contribute to and align with such standards for promoting inclusivity, clarity, and cross-border collaborations in the near future.

Supplemental

The legal tech sector is alive with innovation and change. New products, acquisitions, hires, and initiatives are reshaping the landscape and driving modernization in law firms and legal departments worldwide. Overture Law, a lawyer-to-lawyer referral service founded by LegalZoom co-founder Brian Liu, sees growing use of its platform, integrating billing and trust accounting features. Women of Legal Tech initiative promotes diversity in the sector while offering training and resources focused on technology's intersection with wellbeing in remote workplaces. Several events and conferences, such as LawtechUK's free events and the ILTACON conference, highlight market trends and bring industry giants together. Meanwhile, new laws in California change the employment landscape, and New York-based DISCO faces leadership changes amid profitability challenges.

Trends

One prominent trend is the increased focus on diversity and inclusion, with initiatives like Women of Legal Tech drawing attention to women's contributions in the field and addressing gaps in the workforce. In other news, generative AI emerges as a significant tool in the legal landscape, promising to increase productivity and revolutionize contract drafting and review. A growing interest in adopting legal tech is evident in Europe, despite budget constraints. The rise of legal tech in litigation, contract management, and document review plays a critical role in many legal departments and law firms, though the shift to digital solutions remains a challenge due to financial and strategic factors.

Analysis

For legal professionals, these stories indicate a rapidly evolving legal landscape driven by technology-enabled capabilities and a growing emphasis on diversity. The rise of platforms like Overture Law suggests an increasing digitization and commoditization of legal services, which may influence how firms operate and structure their business models. The emphasis on diversity and inclusion, supported by initiatives like Women in Legal Tech, highlights the legal industry's goal of creating more inclusive work environments. The persistent challenges DISCO faces underscore the difficulties in achieving profitability in this sector, stressing the importance of sustainable business models. The trend towards stricter employment laws in California may encourage law firms to revisit their policies around noncompete agreements and caste-based discrimination. The resonance of AI in this segment represents a significant potential source of efficiency and effectiveness, but it's essential that legal professionals harness its capabilities responsibly, aligning machine intelligence with ethical obligations and rigorous data security standards. Finally, European firms' struggle with budget constraints for adopting legal tech signifies that despite recognizing technology's potential, budgets and resources remain an issue. This could lead to a slow but continuous adoption pattern and emphasizes the importance of demonstrating the return on investment that legal tech solutions can deliver. Overall, these trends and stories plant a clear mandate for law firms and legal departments - evolve with the times, embrace diversity, and capitalize on tech-enabled efficiencies, or risk getting sidelined.


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1-min takeaway

  1. Legal professionals should be prepared to adapt and develop their skills with the rise of AI in the legal sector. This includes understanding and implementing innovative AI technologies like GenAI or ChatGPT to increase productivity and reduce costs.
  2. With the growth in technology adoption, law firms need to pay close attention to establishing and strengthening ethical and security frameworks. This is necessary to mitigate potential risks related to AI use regarding transparency, privacy, and data security.
  3. There is an increased emphasis on diversity and inclusion in the legal sector. Initiatives that promote diversity, such as Women of Legal Tech, highlight the industry's efforts to create more inclusive work environments. Embracing these changes is not only beneficial for the firm's image but also attracts diverse talents that can provide new perspectives and innovations.

Key stories

DISCO Cofounder Kiwi Camara Steps Down As CEO; Board Member Scott Hill Is Named Interim Leader (LawSites)

Kiwi Camara, the founder of the e-discovery firm CS Disco, has announced his resignation as CEO and board member. Scott Hill, a board member since June 2021 and former CFO of Intercontinental Exchange, has taken on the interim CEO role until a permanent successor is found. Camara gained media attention when he made $110 million last year, surpassing the earnings of Apple's CEO. This involved a $500,000 salary and $109 million in stock options. Under Camara's leadership, CS Disco became one of the few legal technology firms to go public, floating on the NYSE in July 2021. Camara plans to assist Hill during the transition period. This reshuffling comes as the company plans to focus on applying AI advancements to legal issues.

Don’t rush ethics in generative AI adoption plans (Legal Dive - Latest News)

According to a McKinsey survey, enterprises are lagging in addressing risks associated with the adoption of generative AI. While uptake of the technology is increasing, only a third of enterprises are taking action to minimize AI-induced security risks, and even fewer are rectifying inaccuracies. This approach risks exposing businesses to unintended consequences. An additional survey by Asana revealed less than a third of employees believed their employers had been transparent about AI utilization. Amid the rush to employ AI technology, leaders must let ethical frameworks and AI policies guide their strategies. To ensure efficient use and avoid negative side-effects, experts suggest defining clear principles and values, operationalizing them through use case reviews, and continually monitoring for potential unintended consequences. They predict that by 2025, regulations will render AI ethics, transparency and privacy an enterprise-wide necessity.

SALI Alliance Defines and Translates 12,000+ Legal Data Tags in 11 Languages (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

The SALI Alliance, a global non-profit striving for legal data standardization, has provided definitions for over 12,000 standardized legal tags and translated them into 11 major languages. This initiative attests to SALI's pledge to make the legal industry more integrated and accessible by forming globally accepted legal data standards. By defining each tag and providing translations in diverse languages, SALI is enabling legal professionals worldwide to interpret and make use of the same standards more efficiently and understandably. This effort also promotes cross-border collaboration while reducing the risk of misunderstandings. This substantial standardization work of SALI is a leap towards striking transparent, interoperable, and unified collaboration within the global legal fraternity. Access to these translations and definitions will be available in the forthcoming general release of the standard next year.

Baker Botts Formalizes 60-Plus-Lawyer Artificial Intelligence Practice Team (Legal Tech Blog)

Global firm Baker Botts L.L.P. has announced a 60-plus-lawyer Artificial Intelligence (AI) Practice Team to cater to the rising client demand. Comprising lawyers from nine offices, the team provides regulatory, transactional, litigation, and counseling services across diverse sectors such as technology, energy, life sciences, and more. The team, co-led by partners Dino Barajas, Rich Harper, Maggie Welsh, and Travis Wofford, is adept in all aspects of AI, from data collection to training algorithms, machine learning, and automation, providing clients with a comprehensive service. The firm emphasizes its deep technological understanding and the ability to handle complex AI-related legal issues, including adherence to international and domestic regulations that govern AI tool usage. The initiation aims to empower clients to exploit AI opportunities under expert guidance.

Workflow Reimagined: How Generative AI Transforms Legal Operations (Fringe Legal)

As generative AI gains attention for its potential to transform workflows and augment human skills in various industries, the legal sector, too, needs to adapt. Legal operations consultancy UpLevel Ops is leading the trend of exploring the use of generative AI in the legal realm. Generative AI can simplify common tasks like content creation, document summary, and conducting conversations in legal settings, saving time and improving productivity. However, it's critical to note that while such AI can automate rule-based tasks, human supervision, and emotional intelligence remain indispensable. Thus, integrating generative AI in legal operations should not mean replacing humans but rather using AI to enhance human capabilities. For successfully leveraging the benefits of generative AI, legal professionals should be open to adoption and adapt to new roles where possible.

Generative AI presents GCs with ‘generational leadership opportunity’ (Legal Dive - Latest News)

A recent white paper has argued that the coming of generative AI (GenAI) has presented general counsels (GCs) with an opportunity to advance their departments. The white paper was jointly created by integrated law provider Factor and legal market insights firm, Six Parsecs. The paper suggests that GCs can use GenAI as a "sensemaker" for their teams and stakeholders, but encouraged a gradual transition with a proactive commitment to understanding the technology, as opposed to impulsive buying. The authors argue that GenAI's sophisticated linguistic capabilities make it particularly suited for legal work. The technology is predicted to impact 80% of legal spend while improving productivity amidst increasing demand for legal services.

All stories

Overture Law Offers Small Firm Lawyers A Unique Way To Capture Revenue They’re Currently Turning Away (LawSites)

Overture Law, a lawyer-to-lawyer referral platform, is a service that allows attorneys to refer cases outside their jurisdiction or expertise to other lawyers, earning referral fees. The platform, founded by LegalZoom co-founder Brian Liu, includes billing features, trust accounting, and direct deposit for earned fees. The company, which started in January, has over 300 lawyers and earns revenue by taking a 20% cut of the client's fee, while the handling and referring attorneys receive 65% and 15% respectively.

Women of Legal Tech: (Law Technology Today)

The Women of Legal Tech initiative, led by Danielle Hall, is promoting diversity and women's contributions in legal technology. Hall provides training and resources to lawyers and law students, focusing on the intersection of technology and well-being in remote work. She believes the legal industry has been slow to adopt technology and identifies generative AI as a significant emerging tech in the field.

Women of Legal Tech: Sarah Lawsky (Law Technology Today)

The Women of Legal Tech initiative by the Legal Technology Resource Center is honoring women in the legal tech field, including Sarah Lawsky, an expert in tax and computational law. Lawsky is contributing to the development of Catala, a programming language for formalizing statutes, and has created a website offering free tax law resources. She highlights the challenge of balancing the potential of legal tech with the hype and misrepresentations that often surround it.

Lawtech UK to host event for investors looking to find out more about opportunities in the lawtech sector (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

LawtechUK, supported by the Ministry of Justice, is organising free events and educational programmes for investors in the legal technology sector. The inaugural event, scheduled for 3 October 2023, will focus on the market size, investment opportunities, emerging trends, disruptive technologies, and regulatory changes in UK legaltech. The event will host industry experts and investors like Stephen Browning, Brian Liu, James Clough, Julia Salasky, Zach Posner, and Alexandra Lennox.

ILTACON 2023: Recap from an International First-Timer (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

The 43rd ILTACON, the world's largest legal tech conference, was held in Orlando, attracting over 3,400 attendees. The event covered technical topics, market trends, and law firm management, with special emphasis on the rise of Microsoft Teams, AI and cloud adoption, and stress management. It offered valuable insights for larger firms into global developments and emerging startups. The next ILTACON is scheduled for August 2024 in Nashville, Tennessee.

California acts on noncompetes, caste discrimination (Legal Dive - Latest News)

California has enacted two new employment laws, bolstering rules against noncompete agreements and prohibiting caste-based discrimination. Senate Bill No. 699 invalidates noncompete agreements and permits employees to seek redress for breaches, effective January 2024. Senate Bill No. 403, pending governor's approval, would make California the pioneer state in banning caste-based discrimination, also extending to ancestry, heritage, parentage, or inherited social status.

Former Citi innovation and technology head joins LexFusion in “evolutionary moment” (Legal IT Insider)

Legal tech accelerator LexFusion has appointed Christina Wojcik, ex-director of legal innovation at Citi, as the head of its corporate legal operations and technology business. Wojcik will assist LexFusion's member organisations in liaising with corporates and identifying additional vendors. Her previous roles include building a legal innovation lab at Citi, initiating the AI for Legal program, and contributing significantly to the growth of Pangea3 and Seal Software.

Transform Data International releases Workhub for Legal (Legal IT Insider)

Transform Data International (TDI) has introduced Workhub, a platform that integrates with Intapp's SharePoint document management system. Developed in partnership with legal and corporate clients, Workhub can be used on any device and provides an alternative to Outlook. The platform features a landing page for easy access to workspaces and supports new features and processes via the MS Power Platform. It also allows users to pin and unpin items for convenience.

Jameson Legal appoints new tech consultancy lead and new senior consultant (Legal IT Insider)

Jameson Legal has named Dan Wales as the head of its legal tech consultancy division, Jameson Legal Tech (JLT), with Sophie Best as a senior legal tech consultant. They replace Jon Bartman and Anthony Cherchian, who played crucial roles in establishing JLT in 2020. JLT links buyers with legal tech solutions, fills tech and sales positions in law firms, and provides a service for extracting data from practice management systems for organizations moving from legacy systems to the cloud.

DISCO co-founder and CEO Kiwi Camara steps down as interim head takes over (Legal IT Insider)

New York-based eDiscovery firm, DISCO, announced the resignation of its CEO, Kiwi Camara. Board member Scott Hill will take over as interim CEO. Despite its growth since 2013, DISCO has faced profitability issues, resulting in a 9% workforce reduction in January and a reported loss of up to $60m in adjusted EBITDA. However, the firm showed signs of recovery in Q2 with reduced losses and increased revenue.

On LawNext Podcast: Litera CEO Sheryl Hoskins On Her First 17 Months and What’s Ahead For Her Company (LawSites)

Sheryl Hoskins, CEO of legal tech firm Litera, has been instrumental in the company's growth, expanding through 17 acquisitions and amassing over 2.3 million global users and 15,000 customers. Her strategy includes a focus on generative AI, with product enhancements expected soon. Prior to Litera, Hoskins held leadership roles in the global technology sector and served as an active-duty officer in the U.S. Army.

Navigating the metaverse (Inside Tech Law)

The article explores the commercial opportunities and risks associated with the rapidly developing metaverse, emphasizing its importance for businesses, consumers, legislators, and legal practitioners. It introduces a seven-part guide focusing on the critical legal and regulatory issues surrounding the metaverse, including new marketing avenues and enhanced customer engagement.

The Problem of Too Few Rural Lawyers (Attorney at Work)

The "legal desert" phenomenon in rural America, where only 2% of lawyers practice, is being aggravated by falling law school enrollment, retiring attorneys, and young professionals' reluctance to move to small towns. State-led incentive programs to attract lawyers to these areas have seen limited success. This lawyer shortage is affecting access to justice and causing inconvenience for middle and upper-middle-class rural residents.

Women of Legal Tech: Tara Cheever (Law Technology Today)

The Women of Legal Tech initiative by the Legal Technology Resource Center honors women leaders in legal tech, including Tara Cheever, Co-Founder and Chief Products Officer at LIT SOFTWARE. Since 2010, Cheever has played a key role in creating legal software tools, including the LIT SUITE, and is committed to making legal technology affordable and accessible. Her recent work includes developing on-device syncing technology for TranscriptPad, a tool for managing legal videos.

DLA Piper Moving to iManage Cloud across UK, Europe, Middle East, Asia, and Australia (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Global law firm DLA Piper has chosen iManage Cloud as its work platform for its 46 offices worldwide. The switch aims to lessen the firm's data centre footprint and improve business capabilities and document-related processes. The platform will offer a secure environment for global collaboration and efficient change delivery. The transition will be handled by iManage's Professional Services team, Ascertus, and OIA.

New Moody’s general counsel starts tenure (Legal Dive - Latest News)

Richard Steele has been appointed as the new senior vice president and general counsel of Moody's Corp., succeeding the retiring John Goggins. Previously general counsel of Moody's Analytics, Steele will now manage the global legal and compliance functions for Moody's Corp., the parent company of Moody's Investors Service. Steele's expertise lies in intellectual property, technology matters, and understanding of litigation and regulatory landscapes. Moody's is currently seeking a replacement for Steele's previous role.

Piracy websites at core of class action lawsuit against OpenAI (Legal Dive - Latest News)

Pulitzer-winning author Michael Chabon and other writers have filed a class action lawsuit against OpenAI, alleging copyright infringement. They claim OpenAI trained its AI models using their works, pirated from 'shadow library' websites. The complaint suggests the AI's ability to mimic the authors' writing styles indicates their works were included in the training datasets. OpenAI has not yet responded to the allegations.

The Transformative Power of Generative AI in the Legal Field (Law Technology Today)

Generative AI can boost productivity in the legal sector by quickly creating initial drafts of deals, providing immediate responses to complex issues, and summarizing large documents. However, it should be used as a supplementary tool, not a substitute for human judgement. Legal firms must understand its limitations and ensure data security and compliance. Despite challenges, generative AI can be transformative and provide a competitive edge if used responsibly.

Walmart refused to provide deaf workers ASL interpreters, EEOC claims (Legal Dive - Latest News)

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has sued a Kansas-based Walmart, accusing it of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The EEOC alleges that the store failed to provide American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters for two deaf employees, leading to missed essential job information and resulting in misunderstandings. Walmart, while reviewing the complaint, insists it has been a leading employer for people with disabilities for many years.

Legal IT Win: Swedish law firm Foyen selects NetDocuments (Legal IT Insider)

Swedish law firm Foyen has selected NetDocuments as its new document management system (DMS) to streamline operations and enhance productivity. The initiative includes the use of ndMail for email management and CollabSpaces for file sharing. The cloud-based system will also integrate with existing Microsoft applications for a seamless user experience. The implementation is being facilitated by Norteam and Sicklaskiftet, NetDocuments' certified service partners.

Litera partners with Intellek globally for internal and external client training (Legal IT Insider)

Legal tech firm Litera has partnered with E-Learning platform Intellek, formerly TutorPro, to utilize its learning management system (LMS) for internal and client training. The collaboration will also see the integration of Litera's continuing education solution, Litera CE Manager, into Intellek's LMS. This strategic partnership aims to boost efficiency and foster learning and development within the legal industry.

The Law Firm Ecosystem: Compensation (Attorney at Work)

This article discusses the importance of transparent and variable compensation plans in law firms. The author argues that the traditional "black-box" approach to compensation, where calculations and mechanics are not visible to associates, can lead to disputes and dissatisfaction. Instead, the author suggests implementing a percentage-based approach that is uniformly applied and allows for increased control and fairness for associates.

Brightflag launches new budgeting features to provide corporate legal teams with greater control over their legal spend (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Brightflag, an e-billing and matter management platform, has introduced new budgeting features for corporate legal teams to enhance their legal expenditure management. The features enable teams to set, enforce, and report on matter budgets on a quarterly, yearly, or life-of-matter basis. They also allow in-house teams to track budgets by phase and month, and establish top-down budgets at different levels. The new features are designed to align legal processes with companies' financial planning preferences.

Leading Swedish law firm Foyen takes document management to the cloud with NetDocuments (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Swedish law firm Foyen is implementing cloud platform NetDocuments to improve its document management system as part of a wider digitalisation effort. The platform was chosen for its security, availability, and speed, and will enable Foyen to manage, protect, and collaborate on documents more efficiently. It will also integrate with existing applications such as Microsoft Outlook and Word.

Avokaado raised €1.2M to reinvent the contract (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

Estonia's legal tech startup Avokaado has raised €1.2 million in a funding round led by Tera Ventures. The company specializes in document and contract management and plans to introduce an AI-enabled upgrade to transform contracts into self-executing data. The upgrade includes a new document format, aDoc, that integrates clauses, metadata, workflows, and lifecycle management, enabling contracts to automate processes, adapt to various scenarios, and track changes.

Spirit Airlines curtails employee eligibility for FMLA leave, lawsuit alleges (Legal Dive - Latest News)

A former flight attendant has launched a proposed class action lawsuit against Spirit Airlines, accusing the company of violating the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The lawsuit alleges that Spirit used a "credit hours" system that excluded most pre- and post-flight work from service hours calculations, affecting when flight attendants were eligible for leave. The plaintiff also claims he was unjustly disciplined for approved FMLA leave and terminated after lodging a complaint with the Department of Labor.

How in-house attorneys can build strong networks (Legal Dive - Latest News)

Tim Parilla, Chief Legal Officer at LinkSquares, emphasizes the importance of networking and diversity in perspectives for in-house attorneys. He advises seeking mentorship from non-legal executives, avoiding echo chambers, and embracing differing viewpoints. Parilla suggests building relationships through negotiations, law firms, professional organizations, and industry events. He stresses that personal development is an individual responsibility and should be seen as an investment.

Companies face Scope 3 emissions reporting in Calif. bill heading to Gov. (Legal Dive - Latest News)

The California state legislature has approved a bill mandating companies with annual revenues exceeding $1 billion to report their carbon emissions from 2026. If Governor Gavin Newsom signs the Climate Corporate Data Accountability Act, it will establish the most comprehensive carbon reporting regulations in the U.S. Although tech firms like Apple and Microsoft back the bill, many manufacturing and financial services companies oppose it, arguing that measuring emissions they don't control is complex and challenging.

Two US securities class action law firms announce investigations into DISCO (Legal IT Insider)

US law firms, The Schall Law Firm and Berman Tabacco, are investigating potential securities law violations by eDiscovery company DISCO, on behalf of shareholders who incurred losses after the company's stock value dropped. This follows the resignation of DISCO's CEO, Kiwi Camara. The firms will examine if DISCO issued misleading statements or withheld crucial information from investors.

New European corporate legal tech benchmark report finds securing budget is a “major challenge” (Legal IT Insider)

A study by Wolters Kluwer and the European Legal Tech Association (ELTA) indicates that budget constraints are the main obstacle for European corporate legal departments in adopting legal technology. The report, based on a survey of 520 in-house legal professionals, found that 27% of departments lack a digital strategy, while 38% have a short-term one. Shared drives are used by 43% of respondents, and 30% use contract lifecycle management software. Return on investment is the key determinant in tech purchases.

Join Us Tomorrow For the Gala 100th Episode of Legaltech Week, Featuring Everyone Who Was Ever A Panelist (LawSites)

Legaltech Week's 100th episode will be a gala edition featuring 20 previous panelists discussing significant trends and subtle changes in legal tech, excluding AI and pandemic-related topics. The theme was suggested by ChatGPT. Panelists include experts like Doug Austin, Niki Black, and Jeffrey Brandt. Pre-registration is mandatory for attendance.

Jack Rives, Former ABA Executive Director, Joins Rocket Lawyer to Lead New Professional Services Division (LawSites)

Former American Bar Association executive director, Jack Rives, has been appointed president of Rocket Legal Professional Services, a new unit of Rocket Lawyer. Rives will oversee the expansion of affordable legal services in the UK and Utah, and the company's alternative business structure initiatives. He will also work on using artificial intelligence to boost lawyer productivity. This follows a partnership between the American Bar Association and Rocket Lawyer initiated by Rives to provide legal services to small businesses.

Differentiating Yourself (Attorney at Work)

The article provides strategies for lawyers to distinguish themselves beyond their practice areas. It suggests methods such as showcasing unique work approaches, highlighting personal credentials, sharing personal interests, and creating a unique presence. The article stresses the significance of converting these features into client benefits and consistently fulfilling the brand promise. It proposes that a properly managed personal brand can assist lawyers in attracting preferred work or clients.

Building cohesion in the post-pandemic law firm (Jordan Furlong)

The pandemic has disrupted law firm cohesion due to the shift to remote work, weakening social bonds and shared identity. Leaders are focusing on internal issues like employee engagement rather than adopting AI, which they consider important but not urgent. The article suggests law firms should actively cultivate their values and culture to boost cohesion in a hybrid work environment.

CARET Legal Introduces AI-Enabled “Quick Summary” Feature to Maximize Productivity of Attorneys (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

CARET Legal has launched an AI-powered feature, Quick Summary, which provides concise summaries of complex legal documents. Utilizing Microsoft's Azure Open AI Service, this feature is intended to streamline work processes for attorneys by increasing billable hours, enhancing service quality, and reducing administrative tasks. It is available for Enterprise Plus and Enterprise Advance plan subscribers and is part of CARET's ongoing AI development efforts in the legal sector.

Wolters Kluwer & ELTA Benchmark: Many European Legal Departments Still Lack Clear Digitalization Strategy (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

A study by Wolters Kluwer and the European Legal Tech Association (ELTA) reveals that 27% of European legal departments lack a digital strategy, while 38% only have a short-term one. The report, which surveyed over 520 in-house legal team members, identified budget allocation as the primary obstacle to acquiring legal technology. It also emphasised the potential of AI to enhance efficiency and lessen mundane tasks in legal departments.

Drafting contracts, flagging risk called top legal GenAI uses (Legal Dive - Latest News)

Generative AI tools are being adopted by in-house legal teams to draft contracts, identify risks, and gain insights from contracts, as per a webcast by Pramata. These tools can improve efficiency and accuracy by automating tasks like agreement review and initial contract drafting. However, the quality of results depends on the accuracy of the source documents and well-crafted prompts. Despite potential risks, experts recommend using these tools for their benefits.

What employers can do in a world without noncompetes (Legal Dive - Latest News)

Noncompete agreements are facing increased scrutiny from state and federal legislatures, the FTC, and courts, prompting employers to rethink their strategies for protecting their confidential information and trade secrets. The FTC's proposed rule could prohibit most noncompete uses, while states such as Minnesota, California, North Dakota, and Oklahoma have nearly banned all noncompetes. As a response, employers are being urged to fortify non-solicitation agreements, review confidentiality measures, impose forfeiture-for-competition clauses, and improve employee retention strategies.

Orthofix ousts CEO, CFO, CLO, citing ‘offensive conduct’ (Legal Dive - Latest News)

Orthofix, a Texas-based medical device manufacturer, has dismissed its CEO, CFO, and Chief Legal Officer due to violations of the company's code of conduct. The board of directors terminated Keith Valentine, John Bostjancic, and Patrick Keran following an internal investigation. Interim replacements have been appointed as the search for permanent successors begins. This news resulted in a 30% decrease in Orthofix's share value.

Do employers need to pay for worker commutes? (Legal Dive - Latest News)

As the return-to-office trend continues, questions are arising about whether commuting time should be compensated under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The deciding factor is if work begins prior to commuting. Attorney David Barron indicates that if an employee starts work at home before commuting, the travel may be compensable. He recommends employers to be cautious with non-exempt employees starting work at home and then traveling to a work location.

Podcast: Charting Change in Legal, Episode 10 (Legal IT Insider)

In the tenth episode of Charting Change in Legal, Caroline Hill and Ari Kaplan emphasize the significance of generative AI in the legal sector, as discussed by the G100. They provide insights into the main topics for corporate legal heads from the ILTA conference. The discussion underscores the potential of AI to revolutionize the legal industry.

Startup Corner: Wexler, your AI copilot for legal disputes (Legal IT Insider)

UK startup Wexler, co-founded by Gregory Mostyn and Kush Madlani in 2023, uses large language models to help lawyers and consumers extract and organise data from documents. Its initial product is a chronology builder for legal teams aimed at improving case outcomes. After raising £400k in a pre-seed round, Wexler is now targeting BigLaw firms and in-house litigation teams. Initially a knowledge management tool, the company has expanded its offerings to support case chronology.

How to Quickly Redline Legal Documents With Word’s Built-In Compare Feature (Attorney at Work)

The article offers a comprehensive tutorial on utilizing Microsoft Word's compare feature for tracking modifications in legal documents. It instructs on comparing original and amended documents, determining the extent of changes to monitor, and accepting or denying changes. The piece also suggests legal professionals use Affinity Consulting Group’s training manuals to maximize their use of Microsoft Office 365.

CloudNine Releases New Versions of LAW and Explore (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

CloudNine, a leader in eDiscovery technology, has released updated versions of its LAW and Explore software. LAW 7.9 offers enhanced scanning and color page detection, improving workflows. Explore 7.9 provides expanded OCR configurations, updated file libraries for precise document identification, and additional export configurations to support complex production needs. These updates are designed to streamline and simplify the management of large data sets.

UK-Based IP Law Firm Partners with Nexl for Enhanced Client Management and Business Growth (Legal Technology News - Legal IT Professionals | Everything legal technology)

A top UK IP law firm has partnered with Nexl, a relationship management platform, to enhance client management and business growth. The collaboration aims to streamline project management, integrate with existing systems, and improve visibility into business development. The move is a response to the firm's previous CRM platform's inefficiency, which was expensive and captured only 20% of leads and opportunities.

How to avoid violating CCPA when sharing employee data (Legal Dive - Latest News)

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) now extends to employee data rights, allowing employees control over their personal data management by companies and HR vendors. Non-adherence could result in data shared with HR vendors being treated as a sale, increasing compliance risk. Companies must ensure their contracts with HR vendors meet CCPA requirements and that vendors are well-versed with CCPA and can manage data compliantly.

Clara’s new Cap Table feature set to further support founders, investors and lawyers (WardblawG)

Legal tech firm Clara has introduced a cap table feature to assist founders, investors, and lawyers in managing startup equity. The feature, designed for international startups, complements Clara's existing tools such as digital company formations, ESOP creation, document generation, and data room management. Unlike its US-based rivals, Carta and Pulley, Clara's cap table solution is free for early-stage companies and is gaining traction among startups globally.

Genesis of “Adam Smith, Esq.” as Our Firm’s Name (Adam Smith, Esq.)

The law firm "Adam Smith, Esq." was named after the renowned Scottish economist, Adam Smith, by the firm's founder who studied economics. The name represents the crossroads of economics and law. Despite early criticism, the founder stood by the name, citing Smith's significant contributions to societal well-being as further justification for the choice.