ABOUT LEGALTECH

Legal Technology (or “LegalTech”) is technology that enables a legal services provider to better provide value to any person involved in understanding or applying the law. It can range from traditional legal research platforms and e-Filing systems, to Smart Contracts and Document Proofreading Software with Natural Language Processing algorithms.

TYPES OF LEGAL TECHNOLOGIES

  • Automated Contract Generation

  • Cybersecurity

  • Due Diligence Software

  • E-Discovery

  • e-Legal Research Tools

  • Knowledge/Practice Management Software

  • Legal Analytics

  • Legal Business Consultancy Services

  • Marketplace for Legal Services

  • Online Dispute Resolution Platforms

  • Smart Contracts

AUTOMATED CONTRACT GENERATION

Existing software for automated contract generation are mostly web-based, and are based upon a questionnaire style system. This means that each answer (by the user) to a questionnaire prompts a different series of follow-up questions to tailor the final document to the user’s specific needs. In turn, this provides a larger, more customisable logic tree than one focused on only a single practice area.

CYBERSECURITY

With increasing digitisation and virtualisation, law firms and consumers of legal services are also increasingly at risk from cyber attacks. In addition, should these companies not take reasonable precautions to safeguard personal data, they could  also find themselves in breach of the EU’s GDPR, or Singapore’s PDPA. For these reasons, there is an increasing need for law firms to procure cybersecurity solutions to safeguard sensitive information.

DUE DILIGENCE SOFTWARE

For law firms, a key part of opening a new client’s file is to conduct a conflict search, to ensure that the law firms is not caught in a conflict of interest when acting for the prospective client. Law firms also conduct extensive due diligence checks regarding conflicts, anti-money laundering and other regulatory requirements. Due diligence software assist firms in search for important information relating entities and persons related to them.

E-DISCOVERY

Electronic discovery (or e-discovery) helps law firms to identify relevant content and provides information oversight in legal cases. E-discovery solutions automate the e-discovery process, which is outlined in the Electronic Discovery Reference Model (“EDRM“) diagram. They are essential to managing the ever-changing nature of e-discovery processes. E-discovery processes change as litigation progresses.

E-LEGAL RESEARCH TOOLS

KNOWLEDGE/PRACTICE MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE

e-Legal research tools essentially allow lawyers to access legal materials – be they case law, legislation, parliamentary debates, regulatory information, or even information about clients and opposing parties – to be done entirely online, in the comfort of one’s office (or home). Electronic legal research was conventionally done through boolean searches (with a user requiring a basic understanding of logic-based connectors).

Knowledge or practice management software address two key needs of

the legal professional: (a) consolidating the information of the law firm, and

(b) helping lawyers make sense of

the information so that lawyers are able to use the information more effectively. Such software address

these needs by categorising, consolidating and assisting in the management of a law firm’s information databases.

LEGAL ANALYTICS

LEGAL BUSINESS CONSULTANCY SERVICES

Legal analytics software provide data analytics solutions specifically for the legal industry. Leveraging on data analytics, such software analyse documents for various insights, including potential legal risks, predictions of success, patterns in court rulings, etc. Legal analytics could also be used together with automated contract generation and document assembly to provide insights to best draft documents for a client.

Legal business consultancy services assist law firms and consumers of legal services in understanding and strategising the procurement of legal technology solutions. Some consultancy services also offer advice to in-house counsel regarding tools that assist in compliance management and workflow-monitoring. Such services are more targeted towards SMEs and new law firms through the incorporation of LegalTech.

MARKETPLACE FOR LEGAL SERVICES

ONLINE DISPUTE RESOLUTION PLATFORMS

Marketplaces for legal services connect potential clients with lawyers through an app or an online portal. In so doing, they streamline the process of finding a suitable lawyer. They often provide a searchable list of available and suitable lawyers. The client simply selects the preferred lawyer. The marketplace then acts as a middleman to connect the client with the lawyer.

In general, most ODR platforms cover mediation and arbitration service. Some platforms even offer a hybrid “med-arb” (mediation-arbitration) model of dispute resolution. ODR platforms allow the mediator to send documents electronically through the platform, conduct virtual meetings with each party and sign settlement agreements electronically.

SMART CONTRACTS

There are numerous applications of smart contracts in different industries globally, such as real estate, insurance, and simplified contract generation services. The main advantage of smart contracts is that it leverages on blockchain technology, which means that the middle man is removed from the deal such that more nuanced processes can be automated.

LEGAL TECH COMPANIES IN SINGAPORE

  • Rajah & Tann Technologies

  • INTELLEX

  • CodeLex

  • Avvoka

  • SeedLegals