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Artificial intelligence and machine learning are existential threats to the law profession. In 2016 a famous Deloitte report predicted that 114 000 legal jobs would be lost globally over the next two decades because of automation.
The top technologies legal firms are investing in are contracts management, governance, risk and compliance
The legal services industry is undergoing rapid digitisation. In many ways, it was inevitable for this to happen as machine learning and the law are governed by similar principles: both look to historical examples to find rules to apply in new situations.
“In fact, the legal sector is undergoing the digitisation that other industries have already experienced and because it is very document-intensive, it’s an industry poised to benefit greatly from what technology can offer,” says HyperionDev CEO Riaz Moola.
“Like law, coding is based on logic and deductive reasoning. It’s about finding solutions to practical problems. While the debate on whether lawyers should learn to code in law schools continues, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that having at least some knowledge of coding will give lawyers a competitive edge. For instance, lawyers involved in the world of tech and responsible for roles that include Patent Prosecution, IP Licensing and IP Litigation can benefit massively from having a coding context.”
HyperionDev has partnered with the University of Cape Town’s Law@Work to explore the coding needs of lawyers, to offer a bootcamp that will give insight and motivation to embrace new technologies.
The course covers programming basic concepts, logical thinking and practical training in Python. This will give adequate exposure to the full spectrum of programming fundamentals.
Learning to code as a lawyer doesn’t necessarily mean dropping out of one’s practice. “The Coding for Lawyers bootcamp can be done part-time at your own pace,” explains Moola. “It will give you the skills you need to future-proof your career, helping you to develop software with programmers from the inside out, not the outside in.”
“This new breed of lawyer-coder will be amply prepared for the digital world of the future, especially in this data-driven industry,” he concludes. “Tomorrow’s lawyers will be those who develop systems to help solve clients’ problems with the support of technology.”
Read more: Top 5 tech careers to pursue after Matric
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