Everlaw: Accelerating the Hammer of Justice

Everlaw is one of the many companies capitalizing on the breakthrough innovations in Generative AI applied to legal research, litigation, and matter management.

Legal tech field at the precipice of major advancements. This is an opportunity-rich space due to the amount of unstructured data, natural language, and relevant technical advancements in Large Language Models. Many startups are applying AI to typical legal workflows that commonly involve document discovery, contract management, document summarization, and contract negotiations. The result is an explosion in innovation across categories from both startups and incumbents.

One startup that is making use of the recent advancements like GPT-4 is Everlaw, a cloud-native eDiscovery platform that has begun infusing Generative AI into its product. eDiscovery is the process of digital discovery of evidence through vast amounts of documentation to build a case on behalf of a client. Lawyers spend, on average, 6 hours a day (mostly non-billable) on administrative tasks that includes eDiscovery. Disovering the right information in piles of powerpoints and documents can be cumbersome and tedious but is an integral part of legal proceedings. As such, the eDiscovery market is one of the largest segments in the LegalTech and has been active for decades. Recent advances in GPT have made it such that sophisticated AI models can be fine-tuned on legal documents an applied to these corpuses of data to extract relevant information all driven by a natural language prompting from the lawyer. Everlaw has launched its AI product line that does just this.

In terms of how value is created, we would have to understand the 3 major phases of a lawyer’s workflow where GPT has been inserted to save time and compare them with traditional approaches.

First, there’s the time saved by the lawyers engaging in a natural language GPT interface rather than the traditional multi-search filter systems that eDiscovery platforms use. Instead of using simple search keywords to find the right documents, natural language queries can uncover the same results faster. AWS reports that there is a meaningful lift in the quality of results when switching from traditional search to natural language search. In the former, 68% of users leave unsatisfied with the results returned. In the latter, there is a 10% increase in the conversion rate of finding the right results. Gen Z and millennials are more used to the natural language interfaces and as the next generation of lawyers enters the workforce, companies like Everlaw can drive higher employee engagement through utilizing modern back-office technologies.

Second, there’s the digestion of returned results. Traditionally, a search result whether through a traditional keyword search or using natural language will return thousands of documents. Sifting through each one to find the right information consumes a bulk of time in the eDiscovery process. GPT can synthesize results by summarizing each document and generating the specific content lawyers are in search of. Some results show that document review time can be reduced by 75% through GPT. On average humans can, at their quickest, sift through 6 documents a minute. The speed at which AI systems can sift through the results would be many multiples faster.

Finally, the results and evidence must be summarized in a persuasive manner to be presented in the court of law. The American Bar Association considers this to be the most important skill of a lawyer, one where traditional legaltech hasn’t made much foray into. GPT has an uncanny ability to sound persuasive because of its understanding of various personas. GPT can translate quickly on the fly adapting to the client’s requirements and increasing persuasiveness along the way. The value created by writing persuasively can be immense however the risks are tangible. ChatGPT is so persuasive that it can convince users of hallucinated content. To combat this, companies like Everlaw have instituted guardrails that prevent the GPT from providing any matter in the case that is not cited from its pre-fetched documents.

Overall, companies as companies like Everlaw integrate AI like GPT into their products they can unlock tremendous cost savings. But perhaps more importantly they lower the barrier to accessing and consuming legal services increasing the access to justice.


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