LEGAL STARTUPS AND TECHNOLOGY

INTRODUCTION

Technology is advancing at a faster rate than ever before, and it is now governing the globe. Every aspect of life has become reliant on technology, and the legal profession is no exception. Legal technology, or legal tech as it is more popularly called, is the use of technology and software that can provide legal services, assist lawyers by making their work easier, helping them in providing legal services in a much quick and convenient way, and making legal material more accessible to the people. Legal Tech Startups have sprung up as a result of technological advancements in the legal industry. These businesses use technology and software to deliver all legal services through an online website. Legal technology is rapidly transitioning from a niche market to a prominent player in the main legal field. The development of technology is the primary basis for the growth of legal tech companies in India. The purpose of these legal tech startups is to replace the traditional techniques of procedural work which was followed by lawyers & other legal professionals with the developing tech-powered items. As a consequence of today’s sophisticated technology system, lawyers can conduct their work more effectively and timely, which benefits the general population.

LEGAL TECHNOLOGY

Legal technology has grown in popularity in recent years, simplifying labour in the traditional legal sector. Technology has undoubtedly impacted every area of conventional law, whether it is virtual hearings, online courts, or AI-based legal research. Legal technology, in the form of modern software, facilitates the work of legal experts and the general public by providing quickness, availability, openness, efficiency, adaptability, as well as comfort. Some legal tech businesses aim to assist lawyers, while others want to help lawyers provide better legal services to their clients and work faster and effectively.

Some of the Important Functions of Legal Tech are:

  • Research work: Legal research has become easier because to technological advancements, and it is no longer limited to sifting through books, which is time-intensive. Lawyers use the available materials online to back up their claims since it is a quick and efficient method to get jobs done. Manupatra, SCCOnline, Casemine, and many others are some of the internet sites where you may find judgments, statutes, case laws, legal news, as well as analysis.
  • e-Signature and e-Verification: Legal practitioners no longer need to rely on their clients for physical signatures because e-Signature offers users with a platform that enables them to sign legal documents, certify digital versions, as well as file documentation online. Furthermore, e-Verification streamlines the task of asserting an electronic signature by ensuring that a document has not been fiddled with.[1]
  • Legal Markets: The idea of a legal marketplace exemplifies how far legal technology has progressed in India. This is a similar concept to Amazon and Flipkart. Consumers can use legal markets to find lawyers online. People can seek legal assistance from whichever lawyer they want, within their budget as well as geographical constraints. Lawrato, legistify, my advo, and other important legal marketplace firms in India.
  • Contract management via the internet: Some legal-tech firms in India are assisting lawyers in managing their contracts online. Drafting a contract by hand is a difficult and time-consuming task. These businesses assist lawyers as well as law firms in drafting and sending contracts via the internet. Spot draught, legal capsule, koncord law, and other start-ups are among them.

PANDEMIC AND LEGAL STARTUPS

Another cause for the increase in demand for legal technology services is the virus, which restricted individuals to their homes and forced them to seek online answers to their physical concerns. Because office visits and actual meetings were outlawed, problems had to be resolved online. People who were in a state of the legal crisis were asking for immediate legal advice. Property conflicts, divorce-related difficulties, and money issues were among the legal woes. Such businesses are also questioning the perception that certain services, such as legal counsel, are prohibitively expensive. Legal technology has made legal counsel more readily available to financially disadvantaged persons. It lowers the price of legal counsel for end-users. Several legal startups have established services that allow people in any kind of crisis to speak with a lawyer and receive appropriate legal counsel at any time. These startups not only aided clients during the epidemic, but they also enabled lawyers as well as legal representatives to operate from home and therefore remain safe. They can serve their customers from the convenience of their own homes.

Rao, the founder of Precily, believes that clients are becoming more responsive to technology that has immediate demonstrable monetary benefits in terms of both cost-investment funds as well as setting up new revenue streams, thanks to Covid-19, a legal and consistent computer technology phase.[2]

LEGAL TECH STARTUPS IN INDIA

Startups are typically young and inexperienced companies founded by one or more entrepreneurs to achieve a certain goal through introducing new and innovative ideas to the market. Legal tech companies are in high demand in India since they provide diverse and improved options like education, employment, legal services, as well as technological advancements, as well as play a key role in the country’s economic development and progress. Aside from that, they provide a wide range of legal services in a timely, cost-effective, and efficient way, which helps both clients and legal experts by allowing them to streamline their work through the use of technology. In India, new technological breakthroughs are gradually taking over the legal system. The legal technology industry is gaining ground in the conventional legal industry. There is a legal instrument online for almost every legal idea. So, whether it’s legal research or news, resolving customer issues, selecting lawyers, or anything else, we’ve got you covered. As a result, below are some of the most well-known Indian legal-tech start-ups that have swept the Indian legal sector. Some of them are:

Rohan Mahajan established this legal IT startup. It is an interactive web platform that allows consumers to identify and employ lawyers as well as receive high-quality, low-cost legal assistance. LawRato has around 50,000 lawyers and has addressed over 1 lakh legal issues. Its most notable accomplishment was providing Nirbhaya’s parents with experienced lawyers who worked pro gratis when the case approached the Supreme Court, regardless of the case’s economic success. For female survivors of violent crime as well as war widows, LawRato provides free legal assistance. 

This firm has become one of India’s most successful legal-tech startups. This start-up is thriving, providing everything from up-to-date legal information to a variety of courses. LawSikho provides over 60 courses online for lawyers, students, government officials, and others. They also offer diploma online courses.

Presolv360 is one of India’s largest and earliest legal-tech start-ups in the field of online dispute resolution. They offer e-arbitration as well as e-mediation to resolve disputes. Allows users to send their complaints to a reputable arbitrator or mediator for resolution.

Legit quest is a legal-tech start-up that specialises in offering legal research material to consumers. This start-up provides several functions, including a search feature that allows people to find legal cases that interest them, a decision, reasoning arguments, findings feature that allows users to illustrate various aspects of a case, such as judgement, arguments, facts, and so on, and an igraphics feature that allows the user to provide case overviews.

Himanshu Gupta established it in 2017 as a law IT network. Over 50,000 companies, 10,000 corporations, and over 100,000 people have sent inquiries. It solves the demand for legal help by providing an approachable forum for individuals seeking legal guidance to interact with legal experts and engage with in-house counsels. Aside from that, the legal tech startup assists law students in connecting with law firms for internships, career chances, education, mentorship, and networking, among other things.

Like this, there are several Legal tech platforms that provide a wide range of facilities across India and the globe.

CONCLUSION

Technology has played a big part in the legal industry, from performing online legal procedures to offering online legal services and advice, and it is inevitable and irrefutable. Technology has dramatically revolutionized the structure of work of the legal professionals in India, thanks to the rise of legal tech entrepreneurs. Because legal tech entrepreneurs provide cost-effective as well as user-friendly solutions promptly, the average person is more likely to approach them. It also lessens the stress and workload that legal practitioners encounter every day. Legal tech businesses have the ability to increase the efficiency and efficacy of the legal field.

Author(s) Name: T. Sree Sai Kundhan (Damodaram Sanjivayya National Law University, Vishakapatnam)

References:

[1] Akaknsha Krishna, ‘Rising Demand of Legal Tech Start Ups in India’ (Lexlife India, 28 July 2020) < https://lexlife.in/2021/07/28/rising-demand-of-legal-tech-startups-in-india/> accessed on  20 September 2021

[2] Moin Alam, ‘Rising Demand of Legal-Tech Startups in India’ (All India Legal Forum 12 Jan 2021) < https://allindialegalforum.in/2021/01/12/rising-demand-of-legal-tech-startups-in-india/> accessed on 20 September 2021

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