Lord Mayor Of London Emphasises Importance Of Technology In Law

The Lord Mayor of London has advised the UK legal sector to reignite its determination to pursue ways of using technology to improve the profession and customer journey.

The Lord Mayor, Peter Estlin, highlighted the legal sector’s innovative use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms to improve the accuracy of completing monotonous administrative form based tasks to emphasise a need to embrace technologies in other avenues of law to ensure the UK remains a global leader.

The speech, given at the annual Judges’ Dinner, referenced and praised the work of the Law Tech Sounding Board for bringing legal and tech experts together to discuss technological solutions and promote the uptake of technology within law.

After alluding to the monumental strides that have been taken in terms of gender equality in law since the Sex Disqualification Removal Act came into force 100 years ago, the Lord Mayor claimed that technology is now an issue of similar importance that should be pressed with the same level of urgency to avoid being left behind.

Peter Estlin, Lord Mayor of London, commented:

“The Law Society has found that adoption of technology amongst UK legal firms remains limited, meaning that the capabilities and benefits of these technologies are yet to be fully harnessed.

“In order to address this issue, earlier this month, the City’s Chair of Policy, Catherine McGuinness, launched our LawTech Sounding Board. Complementing the Government’s LawTech Delivery Panel, the Sounding Board will bring together leaders in the legal and tech sectors to promote the uptake of technology across the legal and wider financial services sector preserving the excellent reputation of the UK’s legal services and retaining the UK’s competitive advantage as a legal technology hub.

“2019 not only marks the 125th anniversary of the Bar Council, but also 100 years since the Sex Disqualification Removal Act. An act which paved the way for women to become lawyers for the first time. It is thanks to this Act, that today, there is a ratio of 50:50 male and female solicitors, a statistic which the City hopes to bolster through supporting initiatives such as the Law Society’s Gender Equality Symposium two weeks ago.

“One hundred years later, we are again asking if we are ‘fit for the modern world’, this time with respect to ensuring that the UK’s legal services reflect the high-tech, digitally progressive era of the 21st Century. For the UK to remain a leading global provider of legal services, we must ensure our legal sector matches this global trend, driving innovation and modernising our infrastructure to enable our judiciary to cater for the clients of the digital age.”

Do you think improving the use of technology in law is as important as gender equality? Should the legal sector being doing more to ensure technology is embraced within law firms?