SPILF 2017. S&K Vertical partner Mikhail Ilin stated at the session «Robots and Lawyers». Report by Pravo.ru
25 May 2017
Within the panel "Robots and Lawyers", organized with the support of Megafon, experts discussed the impact of new technologies on legal practice. Speakers have discussed Russian and foreign examples of the introduction of computer solutions to deal with various problems. Participants in the discussion also gave their forecast for a possible competition of lawyers and robots in the near future.
In any case, we will not replace a lawyer with a calculator, said at the very beginning of the discussion its host Sergey Pereverzev, legal affairs director at PJSC "Megafon". And in fact he predicted one of the conclusions of the conversation in advance. Til Kreutzer, iRights.Law partner, also agreed with this thesis, although he stressed: "Without the Internet, we no longer think of our work, which simply crumbles down if technology suddenly disappears." The speaker dwelled in detail on the use of computer algorithms in the US criminal law system. The technology discussed looks extremely convenient: the machine, based on the downloaded information on a person, can predict whether a person will commit a crime repeatedly. This method in America is actively used by the courts to decide whether to release the perpetrator on bail or not. Kreutzer also spoke about the European experience. In Germany, there is a scoring system for each citizen. The person's rating depends on a variety of factors, including the number of fines for violation of traffic rules. On such criteria, banks pay close attention to determine the creditworthiness of the potential client.
The expert paid attention to the role of modern technologies in the work of an ordinary lawyer. In his opinion, auxiliary mechanisms in some cases will be able to replace trainees in law firms. This concerns primarily those simple mechanical functions, which sometimes take a lot of time. The less handwork, the higher the quality, explained Kreutzer. But still, it will not be possible to replace the young personnell altogether, the lawyer is sure. "Sometimes you need ordinary people, even when you need to show sympathy in a short dialogue with a person. The machine can not do it." And in the judicial system such technologies as a "black box" are questionable, the speaker thinks: "The person will automatically be imprisoned on the basis of given data, i.e. certain algorithms."
In Russia, they are able to predict the outcome of the judicial hearing
Alexei Pelevin, General Director of Pravo.ru, spoke about the Russian experience in introducing modern technologies. He started his speech with a question to the audience: "Who of those present here used the Online Artbitration Cases Record System." All participants of the panel raised their hands altogether. This once again confirms the statistics of our system, which is used daily by 500,000 people, stated speaker. In total, only in last year, half a billion views and 11.5 million visitors were registered on the Online Arbitration Cases (KAD) website. Separately, Pelevin told about other developments of the company. One of them to assess the judicial success of any legal department. And also to control the activities of each lawyer separately, distributing the burden on the employees. In a couple of clicks you can find out how many disputes you won and lost.
The next breakthrough technology is the ability to predict the probability of the outcome of the case, Pelevin said: "The accuracy of such a program is 80% .In fact, we can predict how long your trial will last." This technology makes it possible to analyze the decision of a specific judge. Laughter in the hall was caused by the words that the computer determines what words a particular judge likes to use in the motivating part of his decisions. In addition, the brain of the machine is able to make a report about any company and determine the claim load on the firm as regards a specific type of contracts. This opportunity is especially convenient for potential counterparties of the enterprise. The reporter opened the veil of secrecy over another development: next year, "Pravo.ru" will present a program that will predict the bankruptcy of companies.
How does an ideal "smart contract" look like
The panel members reached the discussion topic of "smart contracts". Alexander Saveliev, in-house counsel at IBM, has raised this issue. He immediately warned that the automation of legal services will occur regardless of the opinion of the lawyers themselves. The speaker explained this mechanism by the desire of all participants of business turnover to reduce transaction costs. "Smart contract" is a program code and should be performed autonomously. However, there is a problem how to draw the discussed technologies into the existing legal designs, Saveliev noted. The Law on Personal Data taken alone creates many problems in practice for "smart contracts".
The speaker sees the ideal "smart contract" as a completely automated tool for performance payable for by crypto-currency. In a short time, universal specialists in the field of law will be in demand who will be able to read the program code, says Savelyev. Quoting the Deloitte’s attorney, Artem Tolkachev, one can say that lawyers will be conductors in the orchestra of robots, the expert said: "But they as true masters should be able to take the instrument in their own hands."
Robots cannot stand competition with lawyers
Steve Crown, vice president, deputy general director for legal affairs at Microsoft, has agreed with the thesis made by his colleagues that lawyers will not disappear under the pressure of robots: "The machines will simply complement our work." Lawyers help society to be more effective, and in symbiosis with computers this task will be more successful, the expert is sure: "The most important plus of robots is that they do not get tired unlike us."
Mikhail Ilin, partner at S&K Vertical is not afraid of the competition with machine intelligence too. He noted that now there is a global trend to do everything electronically, thus reducing the burden on the courts and lawyers. Britain is considered one of the flagships in this process, Ilin explained. Although the East is also not far behind. The speaker gave an example of Singapore, where the process in the Supreme Court is so automated that they use the electronic queues technology regulated by the judge himself. "At a court hearing in California, a judge may discusse all the motion with counsels through a conference call, some things can be automated without the use of top-notch technologies, by slightly adjusting the procedural legislation," he said. In his commentary on "Pravo.ru" Ilin added that in their practice their firm applies all possible technical innovations: "We have programs for project management, use electronic digital signatures." In 20 years there will be technologies that everyone will be familiar with. Life goes by cycles, and we will see more automated things. "
So, technological progress is the main global trend for the next 5 years, and this is so for Russia too, summarized Holger Zscheyge, CEO at Infotropic Media.