by Dr. Lance B. Eliot
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Key briefing points about this article:
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) will undoubtedly continue to be integrated into the practice of law
- Some suggest this will undercut a semblance of justice, while others say it will bolster justice
- A sensible place to start such a discussion involves defining justice (using key precepts)
- AI legal reasoning systems can apply to each of the defined seven principles of justice
- Ascertaining the ultimate outcome of applying AI will be up to how we choose to proceed
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is increasingly being immersed in the field of law. Some speak of the advent of so-called robo-lawyers and robo-judges. Depending upon the perspective of a particular pundit, the application of AI for legal reasoning is either going to be a boon for justice or will be the demise of justice. In short, a vital question being asked is whether the ongoing and futuristic AI-enabled legal reasoning systems will inexorably produce a Utopian-style form of justice or lead to a disastrous Dystopian era of appalling legal misery for us all?
Let’s consider first what it means to refer to justice and then mindfully examine how online lawyering and how AI-enabled LegalTech can be a powerful one-two punch to bolster access-to-justice and reshape a myriad of legal mechanizations aiming to strengthen the future of legal wellbeing.
The Core Principles of Justice
An excellent book by Professor Richard Susskind entitled “Online Courts and the Future of Justice” lays out the carefully established case that justice can be generally cast as consisting of seven core principles. Based on those key principles, he convincingly argues that online courts will both preserve justice and enhance justice, doing so via the prudent utilization of virtual hearings, plus asynchronous online judging, and so on…