Representation. 12019/Pixabay


  • Lord Justice Burnett of Maldon said AI could determine if litigants can win claims in court
  • Burnett cited Singapore's model where AI determines a person's liability in road accidents
  • An Oxford study in 2021 showed that around 50% of British lawyers use AI in their work

The head of the judiciary in England and Wales said victims should use artificial intelligence (AI) to determine their chances of success in court claims before they commit to legal action.

Lord Justice Burnett of Maldon told his colleagues on the Lords constitution committee that AI might help steer litigants "towards resolution of disputes," adding that it could also "enhance access to justice."

"It is not binding, you can issue proceedings, but it is the sort of thing that would be of some use," Burnett said, GB News reported.

"The administration of justice and the courts should try to harness developments in technology which enhance the rule of law and what we do," he added.

Burnett pointed to Singapore's model, wherein AI was used by the city state's courts to help those involved in road accidents determine a person's liability depending on the accident's location, the vehicle's position, and the severity of the victim's injury.

"If you have a road traffic accident in Singapore, you can now go on to a system, you tap in what you say happened and it tells you roughly what the outcome of any litigation would be," Burnett said.

The Telegraph reported an example where a 32-year-old who has no fault in a road accident that left them requiring stitches on their back could get up to £1,200 ($1,500). A similarly faultless person who needed surgery after a dislocated knee could get up to £11,000 ($14,000) under the Singapore model.

Washington-based think tank Brookings Institution believes using AI in law practice could save time extracting salient information and meaning from enormous documents.

The think tank said AI could be used to write initial drafts quickly, advancing arguments, rebutting, and anticipating the arguments from the opposing counsel.

However, it warned that AI could be exploited and flood the court systems with "frivolous AI-written lawsuits."

Brookings Institution emphasized that human input is still needed in the final draft, as "AI can't make a convincing presentation to a jury," adding that it cannot replace the human element of relationships with clients.

A study by the University of Oxford in 2021 showed that around 50% of British lawyers surveyed already used AI to deliver legal services.

The Oxford study, which ran for three years, also revealed that British lawyers became more efficient in their work while acquiring new skills.

With the advent of AI, the study noted that future lawyers might stop calling themselves traditional lawyers and instead refer to themselves as legal technologists.

OpenAI's ChatGPT is coming under greater regulatory scrutiny