Why Lawyers Shouldn't Fear AI

Decrease in billable hours and the fear of losing their job to a machine are the two main reasons lawyers are hesitant to incorporate AI into their work. But by considering the increased market reach as well as the current limitations of AI technology, lawyers shouldn’t let their fears undermine the opportunities gained from adapting AI.

Through utilizing AI technologies to do routine tasks such as document automation or data collections, lawyers are able to refocus more of their time on higher value tasks and the client. This results in reduced bills and increased product quality for the clients, which are in high demand in today’s legal field. Furthermore, the reduced costs make legal services affordable to a greater amount of people, which can help firms build a bigger client base. 


Rather than a threat to a lawyer’s job, AI should be viewed as a complement. The possibility of lawyers being automated is extremely low with today’s technology. According to research done by the McKinsey Global Institute, the automation potential of the professionals industry is only 35%. Furthermore, current technologies have very low capabilities in crucial skills utilized by lawyers such as logical reasoning/problem solving and emotional intelligence. 


Sources: Law Practice Today, McKinsey Global Institute