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Akeredolu Advises Lawyers To Embrace ICT To Boost Their Practice

The Governor of Ondo State, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), urged lawyers to acquire Information and Communication Technology to boost their practice.

He warned that mundane, repetitive and laborious tasks which lawyers carry out in their practice would soon be taken over by machines in the face of emerging technologies.

The governor and senior lawyer gave this advice at the annual conference of the Nigeria Bar Association Section on Legal Practice, which held at the International Event Centre, Akure.

The conference was with the theme, “Value-added Legal Practice.”

Akeredolu stressed that with technology’s penetration into legal practice, any lawyer who failed to key into the current development would be backward.

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He said, “Gone are the days when senior lawyers would come to court with a retinue of juniors and lorry-load of books. Today, the LawPavilion, Legalpedia and other such electronic law libraries have taken the stage. The 21st century lawyer who intends to add value can only ignore such development at his own peril.

“Corporate clients have begun to develop their own technological tools. J. P. Morgan, for example, has developed a computer programming called ‘COIN’, an abbreviation for ‘Contract Intelligence,’ which can interpret commercial loan agreement that used to consume several hours of work each year by lawyers.

“The COIN reviews documents in a matter of seconds and is less prone to errors associated with manual or conventional commercial legal relations. Also, Amazon and Alibaba (Internet companies) have integrated online resolution platform where algorithms are used to settle legal claims.

“In other climes, law firms and private lawyers now use Chabot for simple legal services to help people to appeal against parking tickets. Other examples include Linklaters, which is an artificial intelligence application for backing legal practice; and Rossworld for artificial intelligent attorney built by an IBM cognitive computer.”

While admonishing lawyers to acquire ICT skills, the SAN said it was the only way they could remain relevant in practice.

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Written by PH

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