What does ROSS mean for lawyers?

So, robot-lawyers now work in law firms?  What’s next robot-judges?

Thanks to my colleague Professor Christine Sgarlata Chung for forwarding me this Fortune article.

Global law firm Baker & Hostetler, one of the nation’s largest, recently announced that it has hired a robot lawyer created by ROSS Intelligence, Futurism reports. Ross will be employed in the law firm’s bankruptcy practice which currently employs close to 50 lawyers.

And according to ROSS’s producers, more law firms are signing up.   Fortune has a running poll on whether automation means a decline in jobs with 64% saying yes as of a few moments ago when I voted. The article notes,

Some argue that this isn’t an issue because job availability has historically increased as technology advances, but artificial intelligence is a fairly new territory that many worry can put an end to that trend.

As described in the brief article, the robot’s capabilities don’t sound much more impressive than the latest update of Westlaw or LEXIS-NEXIS in answering legal research questions. However, it must be more impressive if law firms are going to pay for the robot, right?   And although my question about robot-judges was facetious, perhaps that day is not far off?

I would love to know what our readers think.

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