Law firm pioneers ‘contract robots’

International law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP), has created what it believes to be the UK's first contract robot, to work within its Real Estate practice, putting it at the cutting edge of innovation in the legal sector.  The company says it will allow lawyers to focus on higher value work for clients.

The solution is based on an Artificial Intelligence platform, known as the RAVN Applied Cognitive Engine (RAVN ACE).

RAVN ACE reads, interprets and extracts specific information from documents. It converts unstructured data into structured output, in a fraction of the time it takes a human - and with a higher degree of accuracy.

BLP's contract robot uses ACE core functionality to extract data from standard legal documents, cross-check the data internally, check it against external sources, and write the output into a spreadsheet, ready for the next stage of the process.

Matthew Whalley, Head of Legal Risk Consultancy at BLP commented, "The robot has fast become a key member of the team. It delivers perfect results every time we use it. Team morale and productivity has benefited hugely, and I expect us to create a cadre of contract robots throughout the firm. If the reaction to our first application is any indication, we will be leading the implementation of AI in the Law for some time to come."

“As far as leveraging the technology, it is early days for what we are doing."

Bruce Braude, head of strategic client technology at BLP, said "We plan to extend the application of ACE and similar technologies across our range of legal services, to further serve clients more efficiently and to be able to provide clients with greater insights into their contractual relationships. Initial applications will be on routine process-oriented tasks but, as the technology advances, we intend to apply it to more complex legal work."

Peter Wallqvist, Managing Director at RAVN Systems, added, "The use cases for RAVN ACE are virtually unlimited. In addition to law firms implementing a variety of automated review processes, RAVN is working with organisations from the Media, Telecoms, Professional Services and Financial Services sectors to revolutionise their handling of unstructured data. Use cases include automated Due Diligence, Document Review, Contract Assurance, Governance and Financial Instrument processing".