Planning for 2030

17 Dec 2014

Management Consultants Jomati have produced a paper which looks at the future of the legal profession and will make startling reading for larger law firms.

Civilisation 2030: The near future for law firms suggests that by 2030 artificial intelligence will be able to replace humans for all straightforward legal work.

The upshot of that is less work around for solicitors and associates to cut their teeth on. That means that the current pyramid structure of large law firms will no longer work.

On the other hand the report also identifies multiple areas of growth in demand for legal work. They say that the population of the world will peak in 2055. Ageing populations will produce an increase in legal work required. Examples given are:

• Health care and construction companies will need advice n building and financing hospitals;

• Pensions related businesses will need advice;

• There will be other financial and regulatory issues arising from the change in age balance of the population;

• Age related litigation;

• IP issues regarding pharmaceuticals and “geriatric-tech” related IP

More legal work but less need for lawyers except those who can really add value to their clients.

Actually there is nothing radical here.

Our view is that AI will become a significant factor in legal work well before 2030.

We also think that it is not the well run small and medium sized firms that have a problem but the larger firms.

People talk about the squeezed middle ground. For us that relates to firms from £20m to £200m.

Those firms need to find ways to add value. It is not about pricing and it is not about process. It is about changing the client experience.