The legal sector is being transformed by new technology, significantly changing people’s lives. Advanced technology has improved accountability and speeded up legal processes. The COVID-19 pandemic has further stimulated the use of digital systems in India’s legal world. Video calls are now being used for court hearings, and India’s top courts are embracing electronic documents and filings.
A committee states that Artificial Intelligence (AI) offers great potential in the legal field and can be applied in three key areas: automating tasks, assisting with legal research, and translating legal documents. AI can handle various legal tasks like document analysis, research support, and even predicting case outcomes. This can significantly enhance accuracy and efficiency in the legal industry, resulting in cost savings and improved access to justice.
MEANING OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE & MACHINE LEARNING
Artificial intelligence, often shortened as AI, is the branch of science focused on creating machines capable of human-like thinking. AI enables devices to perform tasks considered intelligent or “smart.” Unlike humans, AI technology excels in processing vast quantities of data. The ultimate objective of AI is to mimic human abilities, including pattern recognition, decision-making, and judgment.
Machine learning is a branch of artificial intelligence (AI) that teaches computers to learn and perform tasks similarly to humans. Intraditional programming, computers are provided input data and an algorithm to generate an output.However, in supervised learning, computers can acquire the algorithm by being given input and corresponding output data. This enables them to predict the correct output data in future scenarios.
As Chief Justice of India, D.Y. Chandrachud, stated, “Technology is relevant insofar as it fostersefficiency, transparency, and objectivity in public government. AI is present to provide afacilitative tool to judges to recheck or evaluate the work, the process, and thejudgments.” The primary purpose is to give ordinary people greater access to justice inthe long run.
THE INFLUENCE OF AI ON THE LEGAL SECTOR IN INDIA
The AI Task Force Report began India’s Artificial Intelligence framework. It was created by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry and is headed by N. Chandrasekaran, the Chairman of Tata Sons. The task force’s goal was to explore the economic benefits of AI and its potential impact on India. They aim to incorporate AI into the country’s economic, political, and legal processes, positioning India as a leader in AI-driven economies.
In the traditional Indian legal profession, manual processes are heavily relied upon due to their labour-intensive nature. As a result, AI is still in its early stages, with some older advocates expressing concerns about its extensive use, fearing it may eventually replace human roles. However, many tech-savvy lawyers and large law firms embrace technological advancements to remain competitive. Given the complexity of the Indian legal system, which includes the world’s longest Constitution, adapting to changing times is crucial. Machine learning technology in legal research allows lawyers to gain quick and unparalleled insights into the legal realm.
Cyril Armarchand and Mangaldas, a prominent Indian law firm, is a noteworthy example of embracing AI. They are the first to utilise “Kira,” a machine learning program developed by Kira Systems in Canada. This AI software streamlines various tasks, saving time and effort. It is used for legal document analysis, issue identification, and extracting provisions from different legal papers.
STEPS TAKEN SO FAR BY SC
SUPACE: Supreme Court portal for aiding court efficiency; includes measures being made in the Indian judicial system as part of adopting ML-based applications. It may prepare a legal brief.
Judgments are translated using a programme for language learning called the Supreme Court VidhikAnuvaad Software (SUVAS). An AI-based technique to automate the reading of court judgments was published in 2020 by researchers at IIT Kharagpur. Software called SCI-Interact is used to make SC benches paperless.
THE PRESENT SITUATION OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE IN THE LEGAL INDUSTRY IN INDIA
The legal industry has a rich history, and lawyers have hesitated to embrace new technologies, often relying on traditional methods. However, there is now a shift occurring. Artificial intelligence (AI) has the potential to revolutionise how lawyers work and how the law is perceived in India. This transformation is currently taking place.
One area within the legal field that can undergo significant transformation due to AI is legal research. The legal system in India is constantly evolving, and AI allows lawyers to gain insights into the legal landscape quickly.
Using AI, legal research costs can be effectively managed without compromising quality. It provides lawyers with efficient tools to effectively advise their clients.
PRACTICAL USES OF AI IN THE LEGAL FIELD
AI is important in our daily lives and has significant implications for the legal domain in India. The legal profession generates a massive amount of data, and AI can assist in simplifying processes and providing more efficient and accurate predictions regarding case outcomes.
Additionally, AI can detect patterns and biases within the legal system, promoting a more fair and equitable approach to the law. Therefore, integrating AI into India’s legal systems is crucial for enhancing access to justice and ensuring the effectiveness and relevance of our legal system in this era.
THE ROLE OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE IN PREDICTING LEGAL OUTCOMES
Artificial intelligence (AI) technology provides legal professionals convenient access to vast information from previous cases. This enables them to identify relevant legal points and make more accurate predictions on how issues will be resolved. As a result, AI enhances the efficiency and effectiveness of legal services, leading to better outcomes for clients.
IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF JUSTICE
Furthermore, AI tools and automation help reduce human errors within the legal system. This minimises the chances of mistakes and ultimately enhances the quality of justice delivered.
EXPEDITING LEGAL PROCESSES
AI’s capability to quickly analyse large datasets and identify patterns can accelerate legal procedures in India. This is particularly beneficial in a country with many pending cases and a sometimes slow and complex legal system.
ENSURING AN IMPARTIAL LEGAL SYSTEM
Additionally, AI assists in identifying biases and irregularities in the legal process, ultimately resulting in fairer and more equitable outcomes.
SIMPLIFIED LEGAL COMMUNICATION FOR NON-EXPERTS
AI-powered legal tools have the potential to streamline workflows, reduce the time required for legal research and compliance analysis, and facilitate legal communication, specifically for individuals who are not legal experts.
ACCURATE LEGAL DATA ANALYSIS
Incorporating Artificial Intelligence (AI) in India’s legal sector can revolutionise its operations. By utilising AI, lawyers and judges can enhance their workflow, automate legal research, and efficiently analyse large volumes of legal information in less time.
AI IN LEGAL PRACTICES DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
The Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on individuals’ lives. The legal industry has emphasised the importance of technology and the necessity of utilising AI and machine learning software to complete work. As a result of lockdowns and social distancing measures, courts have been dealing with only urgent matters through virtual conferences and electronic filing of legal documents, per the instructions of the Supreme Court (check here for more information). In the case of Swapnil Tripathi v. Supreme Court of India (find more details here), the Supreme Court considered the idea of live-streaming court proceedings, excluding certain situations such as rape and matrimonial cases.
As rightly stated by Justice Sikhri, “the wheels of justice cannot be stopped because of lockdown.” The delivery of justice falls under essential services, and technology has played a vital role during the COVID-19 crisis, encompassing electronic filing and online payment of court fees, among other aspects. The Delhi High Court has taken another step by establishing e-rooms, completely paperless courtrooms where individuals can access their case information online. Given the present circumstances, technology is a dependable companion, and it is time to embrace technological advancements, including AI, as we progress.
USE OF AI IN US COURT
This marks the first time a legal decision has been made with the help of an AI text generator in Colombia, US. Judge Juan Manuel Padilla Garcia, who oversees the First Circuit Court in Cartagena, used ChatGPT to assist in a case involving a dispute with a health insurance provider regarding coverage for medical care for a child with autism.
According to a court document from January 30, 2023, Judge Garcia explained that he used the AI tool to ask legal questions about the case and incorporated its responses into his decision.
It’s important to note that these texts generated by AI are not meant to replace the judge’s ruling in any way. Judge Garcia stated that the aim is to speed up the process of drafting decisions while ensuring the accuracy of the information provided by AI.
BIASNESS OF AI IN DECISION MAKING
The use of AI in law has made some people worried about unfairness. This happens because AI can learn biases from the data it uses, its decision-making rules, and how people trust it too much. These biases can lead to unfair results, unsuitable for fairness and justice. To fix this, we need to take some essential steps.
First, we should be open about finding and fixing bias in AI used in law. People who know about law and AI should work together to do this. We also need to keep improving the AI programs to ensure they are fair. But remember, AI should help people make decisions, not replace them entirely. It’s also essential to have many different types of cases and people in the data used to train AI. Finally, governments and legal groups may need to make rules to ensure AI in law is fair, and people can be held responsible if it’s not.
Ultimately, using AI in law can be good, but only if we ensure it’s fair and follows the rules of justice.
ADVANTAGES OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE TECHNOLOGY
- Improvements in Access to Justice:
AI can help reduce the backlog of cases in Indian courts by enabling judges and solicitors to analyse and interpret data more efficiently. This can lead to quicker resolution of disputes, saving both time and costs for the court and the public.
- Making Decisions More Efficiently:
AI can analyse large amounts of data and identify trends that human specialists may overlook, leading to more accurate and informed decisions by judges and solicitors.
- Efficiency gains:
AI-powered systems can quickly and accurately analyse vast volumes of data, improving access to the court system and enhancing the overall effectiveness of the legal system.
Automating routine legal tasks using AI can lower litigation expenses for litigants and the court system, resulting in significant cost savings.
AI systems in the legal system may perpetuate existing biases, particularly in India, where marginalised communities are mistreated. It is essential to carefully examine AI systems’ training data and techniques to mitigate this risk.
- Lack of Transparency:
The secretive nature of AI systems makes it difficult to understand how judgments are made, potentially undermining trust in the judicial system.
- Limited Data Availability:
AI-powered systems require a large amount of data to function effectively. Still, digital data are scarce in the Indian judicial system, posing a challenge to successful adoption.
- Ethical Issues:
Using AI in civil disputes raises ethical concerns regarding privacy, autonomy, and accountability. A thorough examination of these issues is necessary to ensure AI’s responsible and ethical utilisation.
- Job Losses:
Implementing AI systems in civil trials may lead to job losses for lawyers and paralegals, impacting the legal industry and the overall economy.
In 2018, NITI Aayog released a policy paper called “National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence,” acknowledging the significance of AI in various sectors of India. The 2019 Budget proposed the introduction of a national AI program. However, despite technological advancements, India still needs comprehensive legislation to effectively regulate and oversee the AI industry.
Startup Ecosystem: The GOI encourages the growth of AI startups through various schemes and funding opportunities—programs like the Startup India initiative support budding entrepreneurs in the AI sector.
Digital India: The Digital India program, launched by the GOI, seeks to transform the country into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy. AI is a critical component of this initiative, and efforts are made to digitise government services and promote AI-driven solutions.
Data Governance: The government is working on data governance policies and regulations to ensure the responsible and secure use of data, which is crucial for AI development.
AI for All: The “AI for All” initiative aims to make AI accessible to all citizens. It includes programs to train students, professionals, and government officials in AI-related skills. It seeks to bridge the digital divide and ensure that AI benefits all segments of society.
AI is a tool that can enhance the abilities of lawyers by allowing them to focus on more complex aspects of their work and providing data-driven insights to support decision-making. It can streamline processes and improve efficiency in the field of law.
Legit Quest is a website for legal researchers to simplify their in-depth studies. It uses artificial intelligence (AI) to establish connections between different case laws, eliminating the need to convert case facts into searchable legal arguments. Instead, it directly provides highly relevant search results from brief or related legal documents.
ZAIAN is the world’s first real-time analyser of Case Law that utilises Artificial Intelligence. Legit Quest’s proprietary algorithm generates IDRAF (Issue, Facts, Arguments, Reasoning, Decision) for cases. All you need to do is select the court and paste the judgment text to start the analysis.
Legal Kart aims to make legal access neutral and accessible, democratising it for everyone. They aim to minimise litigation by developing the first “Preventive Legal Care Ecosystem” available to all.
WILL AI: REPLACE LAWYERS?
AI is not a substitute for human lawyers but can support them in various legal tasks such as research and document review. AI enhances the capabilities of lawyers by allowing them to focus on more complex aspects of their work and providing data-driven insights for decision-making. In India, AI-based tools and automation are becoming more common in the legal sector. Still, they are meant to augment lawyers’ efficiency and competence rather than replace their analytical and decision-making skills. Innovative solutions like contract analysis and legal research software improve accuracy and authenticity in legal work. While AI enhances productivity and precision, it must still replace the essential human element in law practice.