Technology has changed much of the way we live our lives in the modern age, and the practice of law is no different. Because there is a lot of “red tape” and protection on legal processes, it can take a little bit of time for technology to get put into use, but there is no doubt that the new technology that is starting to be used is going to revolutionize the practice of law, changing the life of any criminal defense attorney.
In this guide, we look at some of the ways in which technology has impacted the practice of law.
New Technologies in the Legal Market
So, what are some of the new technologies and their uses, which are making waves within the legal market and industry?
AI – Artificial intelligence makes it easier to perform research. Law firms can use AI technologies and access to public records to analyze and find similar cases, and some programs that run AI can perform Shepardizing. There is little denying the fact that AI is going to change the way we live our lives, but it will take some time to see exactly how it can change the courtroom.
AI can also change the way people approach documents, and rather than trawling through a lot of relevant documents manually, they can be scanned and analyzed in minutes.
Legal Billing – Tracking time and billing may once have all been done manually, but now, it can be done automatically using programs, leaving attorneys to focus on what they are good at rather than constantly tracking their time.
Record-Keeping – This applies for both lawyers and the courtrooms, as records become digitized and publicly available. This means that people have more access to the records of similar cases and examples, and can arm lawyers with the information they need.
Cellular Data – In some instances, even if messages are encrypted, cell phone data can be used to work out where someone was at the time of the crime, but triangulating the signals bouncing off masts. This sort of thing provides more evidence to use and ensure the right decisions are made.
Other Evidence – Tech often provides us with other evidence to be used in court cases that wouldn’t be before, such as emails, or even surveillance. Whatever peoples’ opinions of these technologies, they are undeniably important.
Impact of Technology on the Practice of Law
The impact of technology in the practice of law has made things far more streamlined. Access to other cases and information has become easier. A law firm can now operate in a much more effective and fast way by using technology to optimize billing and administration, but also to help get the best grounding and information to use on a specific case.
The end result of all this technology should be that the information used in the court is more accurate. More evidence can be collected, AI can be used to analyze far more evidence and information, and ultimately technology should be used to make better decisions when helping to decide upon court cases and how criminals are dealt with. We still live in a world where a lot of people are wrongly convicted. Technology needs to try and help us to avoid this being an issue.
Technology in the Courtroom
The ultimate impact of technology on the practice of law should be huge, and we will see it continuing to grow. However, new technologies do need to be approved for use in legal scenarios, especially if they are going to make it to the courtroom. In the future, who knows what technology will change. Perhaps technology will get to the stage where it can be involved in making jury decisions, but for now, it is needed to make the process more efficient and effective.
If we look back at some other industries, and consider the changes that have been made in the last 20, 30 or 40 years, it is easy to see how a similar revolution in the courtroom is well underway. Things take longer to come into effect, but used correctly, tech can revolutionize the way law is practiced for the better.