Law schools need to keep pace with change as technological innovations will drive the future of the legal profession. This emerges from a joint survey by the BML Munjal University (BMU) School of Law and Vahura with the title “Decoding the Next-Gen Legal Professional”.
According to the study, 90 percent of lawyers surveyed believe that technology will be one of the most significant changes in the legal profession.
All stakeholders, including law schools and young lawyers, must keep pace with this technological development to meet customer needs according to the survey.
“The changing customer requirements, the rise of new generations with different career expectations, automation and technological innovations such as AI will further accelerate the change in the legal profession,” the report said.
According to 74 percent of respondents, technical competence is one of the most important skills for future lawyers. Other important skills include understanding and anticipating customer needs (81 percent), commercial awareness (71 percent) and time management (57 percent).
Many lawyers believed that automation within technology would be a key driver of legal processes.
“The results indicate that legal technology solutions may replace some human entry-level roles by automating repetitive and standardized work, but are likely to complement others, such as more efficient document review,” the report said.
“Over 42 percent of all respondents stated that 20 percent of their daily tasks should be automated,” it says.
The role of law schools
According to the survey, the legal faculties are largely responsible for training future lawyers in legal technology.
Over 60 percent of respondents agreed that these institutions are currently unable to keep up with the changing legal environment, according to the report. 61 percent of respondents indicated that law schools need to be better prepared to train law students to make them fit for the future.
Ritvik Lukose, CEO of Vahura, said: “From the outside, the legal ecosystem appears to be stuck in another century. However, this study shows that the legal community is very aware of the rapidly changing times and, as practitioners, educators and stakeholders, is aware of the need to use technology and build new skills. The recent headlines around eCourts, online dispute resolution, and legal technology are some of the better known examples of how much legal practice is changing. ”
Sunil Kant Munjal, Chancellor of the BML Munjal University, said: “In the current scenario, law schools will play a crucial role in promoting and developing lawyers who have the skills and attitudes required for modern legal practice. I am confident that these results will interest both industry and students. “
The survey was based on 200 responses from lawyers currently working in large, medium and small boutique law firms in Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Pune, Hyderabad and Kolkata.