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LegalApril 23, 2024

Legal Leaders Exchange: Revolutionary AI and its impact on legal

The latest episode of ELM Solutions’ Legal Leaders Exchange podcast, Demystifying ChatGPT: The Wolters Kluwer Approach to Generative AI, features a lively discussion about the transformative impact that generative AI (GenAI) is having on the legal function. Our host Jennifer McIver talks to Wolters Kluwer Legal & Regulatory’s Ken Crutchfield, who provides some context about how AI works and how legal professionals can use it to their benefit.

Understanding generative AI

Since late 2022, generative AI has emerged as one of the most popular topics in business and legal media. This makes sense because it is revolutionizing the way corporate legal departments and law firms handle many of their tasks. For those who have heard more about the buzz than the mechanics of the technology, Ken was able to describe what GenAI is and how it works.

The cornerstone of generative AI, such as ChatGPT, is large language models (LLMs). LLMs create an image of language by cataloging words, identifying relationships, and defining concepts. Ken explains that every word in most languages is meticulously cataloged within LLMs, with each component of a word, such as prefixes and suffixes, being categorized. These models create relationships between words, enabling them to understand various contexts in which a word may be used. For instance, the word "green" can signify a color, environmental references like "green energy," or even an individual's experience, such as being "green" at a new job. By identifying these relationships and definitions, LLMs can generate output based on the input they receive.

However, the mechanics of generative AI extend beyond just understanding language; they involve complex mathematical algorithms that manipulate numerical vectors to generate coherent responses. While this may sound daunting, Jennifer reassures listeners by simplifying the concept. She compares it to predictive text on smartphones, where the device suggests words based on probability. In the case of generative AI, these suggestions are on a much larger scale, encompassing vast amounts of language data scraped from the internet.

Acknowledging risk

Despite the impressive capabilities of generative AI, many have expressed valid concerns about its implications. Privacy, security, and ethical considerations loom large in discussions about integrating AI into legal practice. Recent cases where attorneys submitted fabricated pleadings generated by AI tools underscore the importance of due diligence and responsible use. The incident in Florida, where an attorney was suspended for submitting frivolous arguments based on fabricated cases, raises questions about reliability and the need for human oversight.

While generative AI offers tremendous potential for efficiency and innovation, its ethical use remains critical. As Ken points out, the privacy and security of confidential information are significant concerns, especially when uploading documents to AI platforms. Wolters Kluwer recognizes the importance of addressing these challenges and has implemented proactive measures to safeguard client information with any AI solution.

Our approach

Wolters Kluwer has long been at the forefront of leveraging AI technology to enhance its suite of legal solutions. Ken notes that 50% of the company's digital revenue is from solutions that leverage AI, demonstrating a deep commitment to using the technology to drive value for its customers. With solutions like LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer and Legisway already incorporating AI capabilities, Wolters Kluwer has a solid foundation in utilizing AI to streamline legal operations and deliver actionable insights.

However, Wolters Kluwer's approach to generative AI goes beyond just implementing technology. It encompasses a holistic strategy focused on collaboration and innovation. Jennifer emphasizes the importance of combining human expertise with AI technology to create better products and solutions. Wolters Kluwer's team of subject matter experts and data scientists work in tandem to develop AI-driven features that meet the diverse needs of legal professionals while maintaining the highest standards of accuracy and reliability.

For further insights into the transformative potential of generative AI in the legal industry, we invite you to listen to the full podcast episode: Demystifying ChatGPT: The Wolters Kluwer Approach to Generative AI, which is also available on all major podcast platforms. If you enjoy Legal Leaders Exchange, please consider reviewing it on the platform where you listen, as this helps other professionals find it and benefit from the insights offered.
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