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Welcome to our Legal Technology blog.

Casian Sala
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Let’s call the whole thing off. Quickly. There are few clients more keen to bring a swift end to proceedings than a divorcing couple. With that in mind, a Canadian company has come up with an app to help couples without legal representation to...
Paul Fox
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Law Society looks at how to boost legal aid innovation   For all that we hear the legends of Steve Jobs designing his first Apple hardware from out of a damp and mildewy garage, presumably while living on Pot Noodles and sporting very worn-out jeans,...
Casian Sala
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Online billing set for national rollout Few things are likely to endear tech innovations to lawyers – and to all professionals – than streamlining payment systems. Good news, then, from the government, which is looking to expand online billing...
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Comparethelawyer.com? This year will see the launch of a sparkling new innovation in legal practice: the ‘ Law Superstore’ website. It’s pretty much the legal marketplace equivalent of infamous insurance comparison site ...
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Cyber Security blog round-up Another year, another set of cyber-threats. Once lawyers across the world got used to one technique used by cyber criminals, and put up appropriate defences, fresh attacks were invented. For early 2016 it’s the...
Paul Fox
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Tech: the latest steps in crime prevention In what sounds thrillingly like a sub-plots from Minority Report, it seems police services across the UK may well turn to biometric technology in a bid to tackle crime. This is only one prediction amid a general...
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New Year, new tech? A look at the 2016 forecast There is nothing quite like a new year to prompt attempts to peer into the crystal ball and see what the future holds. Both personally and professionally, we all want to know whether we will do better,...
Casian Sala
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The ‘Friday Afternoon’ Scam   The latest scourge of the cyber-crime variety is becoming known as the ‘Friday Afternoon’ scam. It sounds rather like an intriguing French film, but alas is considerably less entertaining  -...
Paul Fox
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The Autumn Spending Review - what news for tech? This autumn’s Spending Review was nothing if not full of surprises, and worth watching if only to see the Shadow Chancellor respond by withdrawing a copy of Chairman Mao’s Little Red Book from his...
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Bringing the emergency services up to date   Criminal lawyers in particular will be only too aware of the crucial importance of an emergency service which is able to respond effectively and efficiently to the demands of the public. And yet how many of...
Casian Sala
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First ‘entirely digital’ court proceedings go ahead   A pilot scheme carried out in the West London Family Court is making a claim to be the first ‘entirely digital’ court proceedings to be carried out in the UK. As Legal...
Paul Fox
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The dangers of poor tech: videoed witness statements lost to ‘poor technology’   Disappointing news for those of us keen to embrace legal tech as a means to build a legal industry that’s thriving in the twenty-first century: it would...
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To the digital barricades!   Over in the US, it looks like even the largest and most formidable law firms are no proof against cyber attacks. The American Bar Association’s legal technology survey report 2015 – which runs to a princely ...
Casian Sala
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bricks and mortar to binary code   In a triumph of corporate pseudo-speak over Plain English, HM Courts and Tribunals Service From has announced that it is planning to invest in further moves away from the ‘physical paradigm’....
Paul Fox
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In-house lawyers – lock your cyber doors and windows!   Worrying news over at the Gazette : it would appear in-house legal departments are more likely to fall foul of cyber-criminals and phishing attacks than their colleagues. Slightly...
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Better tech in the courts: an optimistic round-up   Here at Legastat we’ve been tracking developments in court technology, from the eventual roll-out of Wi-Fi in the courts nationwide to judges pleading for the use of digital bundles and costs...
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Doing it old school: the price may not be right   A key driver for firms and chambers adopting legal tech has been the potential for cutting costs. With ever-increasing demands to keep budgets tight (and to keep to tight budgets), innovations such...
Paul Fox
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So that’s email sorted. What next?   Think you’re a pretty tech-savvy sort of outfit? All au fait with digital bundles and eDiscovery? Well there’s a firm out there really ready to show the legal marketplace who’s boss when...
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The tech effect: working harder, not smarter?   That old adage ‘work smarter not harder’ seems ideally suited to a golden age of legal tech. With the growing range of legal technologies available to chambers and firms, you’d be...
Casian Sala
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Next step for the modern court: online sentencing?   In the endless drive to bring our courts into the twenty-first century, the head of the Queen’s Bench Division has mooted the idea of online sentencing for offenders . In a speech coming...
Paul Fox
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Is the Wi-Fi wait nearly over? When it comes to the government’s plan to make all Magistrates’ and Crown Courts in the UK fully Wi-Fi enabled, is the glass half full, or half empty? Recently there’d been worrying news for those of us...
Casian Sala
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World’s first app for criminal lawyers – setting a trend? The world of the criminal lawyer is not one that is particularly suited to digitisation, for a simple reason: courts and prisons are, of course, not noted for being online. Security...
Paul Fox
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What next for legal tech – 3D printing par for the course?   Even the most IT-savvy lawyers might not have predicted the role played by tech in a recent criminal case, which looks truly twenty-first century (as things so rarely do, even now). ...
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Legal Aid Agency going ‘fully digital’.   Few legal institutions can have felt quite so beleaguered in recent years as the Legal Aid Agency. Cuts to the availability of Legal Aid, and a swathe of government reforms (undergoing challenge...
Casian Sala
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Criminal justice proceedings: bang up to date?   Those of us keeping an eye on the way tech innovations are increasingly seen as being integral to the legal landscape have noted (with some relief) a recent letter from the Lord Chancellor. Writing...
Paul Fox
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Judge threatens destruction of excessive bundles – are modern courtroom methods a state of mind?   Despite the increased use of digital bundles, the sight of clerks wheeling trolleys of papers up Fleet Street towards the RCJ remains...
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Technology helping lawyers see the way the land lies   Anyone who has ever been involved in a property purchase  - whether as buyer, seller, lawyers, or any one of the seemingly endless number of professionals who get involved in the process...
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The Oscar for best legal tech goes to…   It’s Oscar week, and devotees of film have woken up to disappointments and triumphs, to the inevitable pictures of actresses sporting uncomfortable gowns on red carpets, and awkward moments on...
Casian Sala
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Faster, cheaper civil justice – online by 2017?   In the latest of our glimpses into the near future, it appears we may be seeing ‘online courts’ fully rolled out by 2017. The Civil Justice Council – which is looking to...
Paul Fox
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Our ‘hi tech’ courts – cause for celebration?   Though the courts retain many of the outward symbols of tradition – the wigs and gowns, the deferential clerks, such deliciously old-fashioned legal phrases as ‘going...
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New Year, New Robot Lawyers? Nothing beats peering into the future as a good way to start off a new year. With that in mind, we turn to a recent article in the Gazette about the use of ‘robot brains’ in legal practice. In what’s...
Casian Sala
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With no sign of austerity measures loosening their grip, the headlines are rarely free of evidence that those most economically disadvantaged feel the cuts most deeply. Recent scandals relating to the number of food banks opening nationwide, and the...
Casian Sala
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The Next Generation: legal tech and the 21 st century law student   “I believe that children are our future”, sang the late Whitney Houston; and if only from a logical perspective it’s difficult to take issue with her position....
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Weathering the storm Much has been written late of the winds of change blowing shrilly around the UK’s legal landscape. What with closures of courts, the demands of the Jackson report, Alternative Business Structures and the sharp blades of...
Paul Fox
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Putting the ‘smart’ into ‘smartphone’ In the latest despatch from what we can think of as Truly Modern Times, a smartphone and some sophisticated practice management software has been all that stood between a certain South London...
Casian Sala
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Shedding light on the darknet The term ‘darknet’ is one which only recently would’ve left most of us baffled, imagining perhaps a fantasy computer game or perhaps a form of blackout curtain. But with more and more cases coming to courts...
Paul Fox
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Cloud data storage: heavy weather? The more cyber-savvy lawyer may have noted with alarm a survey published yesterday reporting that up to a quarter of firms using cloud data storage have been subject to security breaches. Law site Out-Law reports that...
Casian Sala
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Those of us who remember the early days of the National Lottery will recall with wry fondness the presence of Mystic Meg. Sporting hair in a hue of black never seen in nature, scarlet lipstick and cheekbones you could use to grate parmesan, she was wheeled...
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Barely two weeks after what would have been the 111 th birthday of George Orwell, we learn that controversial new legislation is to be brought in that could require telephone and internet companies to record phone calls and correspondence. It is difficult...
Paul Fox
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If “war is the mother of invention”, as the saying goes, there’s no doubt that when it comes to legal tech, cyber-crime is the mother of innovation. In attempts to keep pace with the fresh opportunities to transgress the internet provides,...
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Since barely a month passes without some new gadget, app or software platform promising to render the lawyer’s life one of ease and efficiency, we take a look at four of the most useful innovations cropping up out there in the techspace.   ...
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Those who eagerly watch for signs the twenty-first century might turn out to be all they’d hoped would have been gratified by recent images of the proposed Mars landing living quarters. Consisting of what looks like ten giant inverted teacups and a...
Paul Fox
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It appears the time is coming when the most misanthropic of us will finally meet our objective to never leave the house if it can possibly be helped. In a move faintly reminiscent of a movie about a dark future in which all life is conducted via laptop, one...
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The planned High Speed 2 (HS2) railway - which famously promises faster connectivity between London, the Midlands and the North West - has been beset with controversy since its inception. Its champions say it is the next step in the grand rail pathways that...
Paul Fox
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There is no doubt that to be a lawyer is to have a satisfactory answer to that most dreaded of dinner party questions: “So what do you do?” One imagines that bankers and traffic wardens may shrink from responding, feverishly trying to come up...
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That old adage that a bad workman blames his tools is often delivered with some asperity – and yet, as anyone who has ever tried to assemble an Ikea Billy bookcase with the wrong gauge Allen key can testify, the wrong tools for the job will result in...
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In the wake of the Heartbleed mayhem, lawyers may be forgiven for not being in any particular frame of mind to embrace new legal tech as part of their daily routine. Yet there are reasons to be cheerful, not least the consoling (but little-known) fact that...
Paul Fox
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Legal industry observers keenly watching the march of technological progress across the profession may well have paused to wonder when the twenty-first century was likely to alight on other aspects of our judicial system. Though some have accused lawyers of...
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Next year, the British Library will play host to a remarkable event. For the first time in history, the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta will be brought together, for a brief three-day display. These 800-year old documents are among the most famous...
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Ever since the BBC’s infamous ‘spaghetti trees’ April Fool jest – played with resounding success on a public which still bought olive oil at the chemist to relieve infant earache  - media outlets the world over have delighted in...
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Doubtful as it is that correspondence from legal regulators and representative bodies fills the recipient with unalloyed glee, it is unlikely to be filed aside as ‘Spam’, or ignored entirely. E-mails from trusted institutions are often opened...
Paul Fox
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It must be said that when young would-be lawyers dream of their future in Chambers or at a top City firm, a lifetime more or less bolted to a PC or laptop screen is unlikely to feature large in their imagination. Last-minute dashes to court, elegant opening...
Casian Sala
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Trend forecasts are a notoriously tricky business, lacking – as most of us do – the proverbial crystal ball. And when it comes to looking at the future of IT and tech, it’s tempting to snort at some of the outlandish innovations...
Casian Sala
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The effects of the Ministry of Justice’s 30% cut to Legal Aid fees have been widely reported – and, perhaps justifiably, deplored. The historic walk-out by barristers earlier this year struck headlines with considerable force, as the public...
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A recent devastating personal injury case has demonstrated the critical importance of personal injury compensation legislation – and the crucial nature of the forensic examination of evidence. 10 year old Maisha Najeeb had suffered from a rare...
Casian Sala
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The government has announced that it is to abolish the dated ‘marital coercion’ defence as part of an amendment to the antisocial behaviour, crime and policing Bill. Keen watchers of last year’s Chris Huhne/Vicky Price soap opera might...
Paul Fox
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Few regulatory changes have provoked quite such a stir as the Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates (QASA) . The ongoing row over the controversial programme (designed to assess all advocates against a set of standard criteria) reached fever-pitch this...
Paul Fox
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Legal dramas thrive on courtroom scenes. Who is not familiar with the plucky, blonde (and frequently Northern) defence barrister wittily scoring points over a curmudgeonly judge? Or with the courageous witness turning trembling to the dock and declaring...
Paul Fox
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Lawyers returning to work this week might have spotted newspapers reporting that this Monday was officially the most depressing day of the year . Dubbing it ‘Blue Monday’, gleefully gloomy reports cited post-Christmas blues, New Year debts and...
Paul Fox
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Beneath the mistletoe, carols, chestnuts and turkey there lurks a thousand hidden dangers – factor in the infamous British capacity for ale and December makes for a bumper crop of PI cases. One survey of Christmas accidents found 142 injuries from not...
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Members of the legal profession who consider litigation support services and digital bundles a threat to the dusty old glamour of Court and chambers should take note: when a former Lord Chief Justice asserts that modern technology can and must support the...
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“Only the rich can afford cheap shoes”, as your grandmother may have said – and what’s true for footwear proves surprisingly apt elsewhere. The question of value for money is one which is readily misunderstood. Too often mistaken for...
Paul Fox
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Post-cinema pub discussions often turn to the seismic shift in the way we communicate, and its effect on films. The number of movies which would no longer work were letters to be supplanted by emails is never-ending: only think of the spine-chilling scene in...
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Apple nay-sayers may have been forgiven a wry smirk at the recent news that the latest iPhone’s spiffy fingerprint ID device was successfully hacked in a mere 2 days. Germany-based hackers The Chaos Computer Group used a high-resolution photograph of a...
Casian Sala
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The old Boy Scout watchword “Be prepared!” is hardly the kind of elegant aphorism you’ll find framed on the wall of a dim-lit Holborn bar – but nothing could be more timely for an increasingly fraught legal profession. With the...
Paul Fox
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The opening episode of BBC legal drama Silk featured feisty Northern lawyer Maxine Peake triumphantly scrawling NG (Not Guilty) on her case file in lipstick. This single scene effectively played every card in the legal-drama deck: the youthful blonde in...
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Already tired of your iPad mini, or your Galaxy S4 with its photos-with-sound gadgetry? Unimpressed by the Google glass technology, and jonesing for your next IT fix? Then consider this: it’s predicted your next investment will not live in your pocket...