Skip to main content

We value your privacy

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.


Earlier this month, George attended the Legal Geek Growth Event where he heard from various inspirational speakers, legal technology enthusiasts and researchers on the future of technology in the legal sector for SME law firms.

The focus of the conference was primarily AI and how it can be used and harnessed most effectively to make lawyers, and the work that they carry out, more efficient. Findings presented by Thomson Reuters, from a study they had conducted, suggested that lawyers expect Generative AI (“GenAI”) will most likely be used in the following areas: document review (91%); legal research (83%); document summarisation (74%); and contract drafting (66%) to name a few. According to their research, 27% of UK legal professionals are already using, or at least planning to use, GenAI in their practice. Such was the strength of their findings that they believe every lawyer in the UK will have a GenAI assistant within the next three years.

Although the regulatory framework within which AI will be governed has not yet been developed (see the following article here, where George and Roger explore this further), Ian Jeffrey, chief executive of the Law Society of England and Wales, stressed that they are working with the relevant authorities to begin producing the requisite legislative framework which it is hoped will boost user confidence and promote the ethical use of AI.

The conference also welcomed speakers from numerous vendors who were keen to promote new features of their products that integrate GenAI. After many of these vendors outlined hypothetical scenarios in which such AI features could be used, it was clear that the excitement and expectations for AI were significant. However, despite such optimism, some speakers were eager to caution their audience of the potential dangers when using AI and, as such, what to look out for when procuring AI systems. This included things like: checking whether the vendor properly understands their GDPR obligations by looking at their privacy notice; and looking at the data processing agreement of the vendor to understand what they will be doing with the data inputted.

Typically, when it comes to legal technology, according to Thomson Reuters, ‘firms are in the race to be second’. Yet, when it comes to AI, there seems to be a greater willingness to experiment and change. There is a difference, though, between experimenting and implementing the results of those experiments. Of course, the latter is the toughest step. Thomson Reuters made clear that there remains an element of apprehension in this regard but were keen to encourage the audience to take that next step as it could be groundbreaking for the firm and its practice. To reinforce this message, Maggie Alphonsi spoke on the need to be bold. In her situation, never before had a woman commentated on professional men’s sport. However, her willingness to accept ITV’s offer back in 2016 has changed the landscape of women in sports commentary today and others have subsequently followed in her footsteps. Clearly this message resonates beyond the world of sports commentary. If firms can take that next step in their legal AI technology journey, it will likely bear significant fruits in the longer term.


George Jones

View LinkedIn Profile

A Deep Dive into the EU AI Act

Prev post

New Guidance published by HMRC regarding the application of roll-over relief

Next post