This blog has been authored by Gandham Lavanya
The advancement of technology is changing many facets of people’s life. In the legal profession, disruptive technology is also fostering improved accountability and reducing the length of litigation. The digitalization of the legal system was also greatly accelerated by the Covid-19 epidemic. Court sessions were held through video conferencing, and India’s top courts converted to electronic filing. However, the pandemic did not cause all of these breakthroughs. When the “e-Court Project,” a project under the National e-Governance Plan, was announced in 2007, the process of digitizing Indian courts got under way.
All District and Subordinate Court complexes are intended to be completely computerized and ICT-enabled as part of the e-courts Mission Mode Project, which is being carried out by the Department of Justice in close collaboration with the e-committee of the Supreme Court of India. The Artificial Intelligence Committee was created by the Indian Supreme Court to examine how AI is used in the legal system. The three primary applications for AI technology that this committee has identified are process automation, assistance with legal research, and translation of legal documents. Despite the second phase of the e-courts having been under development since 2015, AI technology has not been applied there.
The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the legal system has been the subject of extensive discussion in recent years. Artificial intelligence (AI) may be used to carry out a range of legal tasks, including document analysis, legal research, and case outcome prediction. Artificial intelligence (AI) has the potential to increase accuracy and efficiency in the legal business, lowering costs and enhancing access to justice.
AI IN CIVIL CASES:
The use of AI in civil proceedings, however, is particularly challenging in India. India’s legal system is complicated and varied, with a vast variety of laws, courts, and legal procedures. It is important to carefully weigh the potential benefits and challenges of utilizing AI in this situation. Beyond attorneys and judges, the general public may increase its participation with and comprehension of the law by using research and analytics technologies that are widely available. The goal of this participation is to develop more informed, pro-government citizens.
By assisting judges with their decision-making, relieving the strain on attorneys, and improving public access to justice, artificial intelligence (AI) technology has the potential to change the legal system. AI can help with case prediction, document appraisal, contract analysis, and legal research. AI may assist in resolving disputes by providing mediation and arbitration services.
AI can assist in reducing case backlogs and improve judicial efficiency. The large number of instances could appear to be reduced with the help of AI, but like any machine, it has its limitations. Only a small portion of the Indian legal system may be automated using artificial intelligence (AI) because of the complexity of the Indian judicial framework, which is composed of several laws, including civil, consumer, and criminal laws. Criminal law may employ AI to detect crime tendencies. But it is impossible to generalize AI to all criminal laws since every criminal case has a different set of circumstances. Therefore, it is difficult for AI robots to collect every piece of data. Although there are several applications of AI for assisting lawyers and judges with comprehension, such as expert systems, natural language processing, and language translation. It’s crucial to thoroughly consider the possible advantages and difficulties of applying AI in this case.
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HOW ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE CAN BE IMPLEMENTD IN INDIA:
Artificial intelligence (AI) has the power to profoundly alter the legal system by automating time-consuming, repetitive operations, enhancing decision-making, and increasing efficiency. Several examples of how AI is already being used in the legal industry are provided below, legal investigation AI-powered tools can analyze enormous amounts of legal data, including case law, legislation, and regulations, to help attorneys identify essential information more quickly and correctly. In addition to saving time and costs, this can improve the quality of legal research.
The overwhelming amount of cases that are still outstanding across India, where the same information has been made available on the National Judicial Data Grid (NJDG) website, is the system’s fundamental issue. The question that now arises is: Can artificial intelligence be utilized to expedite the legal system by lowering the backlog of cases? The answer might be somewhat yes or partially no.
To examine the use of AI in the judicial sector, the Supreme Court of India formed the Artificial Intelligence Committee and has offered a wide variety of prospective applications. The second phase of the e-courts projects, which have been operational since 2015, is being implemented, and law minister Kiren Rijiju stated that it was necessary to use new, cutting-edge technologies like machine learning and artificial intelligence to improve the effectiveness of the justice delivery system.
STEPS TAKEN SO FAR BY SC:
SUPACE: Supreme Court portal for aiding court efficiency; includes measures being made in the Indian judicial system as part of adopting ML-based applications. It may prepare a legal brief. Judgments are translated using a programme for language learning called the Supreme Court Vidhik Anuvaad Software (SUVAS). An AI-based technique to automate the reading of court judgments was published in 2020 by researchers at IIT Kharagpur. Software called SCI-Interact is used to make SC benches paperless.
POSITIVE IMPLICATIONS OF USING AI:
- Improvements in Access to Justice:
AI can help cut down on the amount of cases that are waiting in Indian courts. Judges and solicitors can more easily analyze, evaluate, and interpret data thanks to the technologies’ ability to quickly locate critical information from vast quantities of legal documents. As a consequence, disputes may be settled more rapidly, cutting down on the amount of time needed to resolve cases, which can save the court money and lower the expense of litigation for the public.
- Making Decisions More Efficiently:
AI can look at a lot of data and analyze trends that human specialists occasionally overlook. Judges and solicitors can provide more accurate outcomes by making clear and informed decisions.
- Efficiency gains:
AI-powered systems can analyses massive volumes of data quickly and accurately, saving time and effort on legal tasks. As a result, everyone may have better access to the court system and the legal system may function more effectively.
Litigation expenses can be lowered by automating routine legal tasks like document examination and analysis. As a result, both litigants and the court system may see significant cost savings.
Artificial intelligence (AI) systems may reinforce prejudicial attitudes already present in the legal system, producing biased outcomes. This is especially true in India, where the legal system already treats marginalized communities unfairly. Analysing the training data and techniques employed by AI systems in detail is crucial to lowering this risk.
- Lack of Transparency:
AI systems are frequently secretive, making it challenging to comprehend how judgements are made. The judicial system may become less trusted as a result of this lack of openness.
- Limited Data Availability:
In order for AI systems to function properly, they need a lot of data. It is difficult to adopt AI-powered systems successfully in India since there is a dearth of digital data in the judicial system.
- Ethical Issues:
The employment of artificial intelligence in civil disputes poses ethical issues related to privacy, autonomy, and accountability. To guarantee that AI is utilized in a responsible and ethical manner, careful examination of these issues is required.
- Job Losses:
Lawyers and paralegals may lose their jobs as a result of the use of AI in civil trials, as these professionals may be replaced by AI systems. The legal industry, as well as the general economy, may suffer as a result.
CAN ARTIFICIAL INTELLEGENCE REPLACE THE LAWYER?
By enhancing the speed, accuracy, and efficiency of numerous legal operations including contract review, legal research, and document analysis, artificial intelligence (AI) has the potential to completely change the legal sector. AI won’t likely completely replace attorneys, though.
While AI is capable of carrying out a variety of legal duties, such as document assessment, it is yet unable to give legal advice or make strategic judgements based on intricate legal and ethical issues. Additionally, legal issues sometimes include complex events and human emotions that AI might not be able to manage well.
A human touch is also necessary in the legal profession since tasks like client counseling, bargaining, and courtroom representation cannot be performed by AI. It’s doubtful that AI will ever entirely replace attorneys in the foreseeable future. Although artificial intelligence (AI) technology has advanced significantly in recent years and can be used to automate some operations, such as legal research, document review, and contract analysis, it lacks the human judgement, creativity, and interpersonal skills that are required for many legal duties.
There are around 47 million pending cases in the courts and more cases are added every year. A wide range of duties that need legal expertise, analytical prowess, and judgement are also included in the legal profession. These activities frequently need attorneys to apply legal concepts to particular and complicated factual situations, which can be challenging for AI to execute properly and efficiently. Although AI can be a beneficial tool for attorneys to boost productivity and efficiency, it is doubtful that AI will totally replace lawyers. On the other hand, as AI technology develops, it may be more fully incorporated into the legal industry and alter the way attorneys practice
By enhancing productivity, accuracy, and justice access, the application of AI in civil matters in India has the potential to completely alter the way the judicial system operates. However, there are certain moral and legal issues that must be resolved, such as prejudice and discrimination, a lack of openness, issues with privacy, job losses, and access to justice. To make sure that AI systems are created and used in a way that supports fairness, accountability, and social justice, the legal community, legislators, and technologists must collaborate.
To know more about the regulation of AI, enrol for Certificate in Artificial Intelligence and Law.