Firm Hires Artificially Intelligent Lawyer To Handle Its Bankruptcy Cases

Ny MaGee

IBM's AI Ross is the world's first artificially intelligent lawyer, and firm Baker & Hostetler has announced that they are employing the computer to handle their bankruptcy practice, which consists of nearly 50 lawyers. The firm has more than 900 attorneys and 14 offices across the country. According to a joint statement from the law firm and Ross, the AI won't be used in the courtroom, but it could be a vital resource for lawyers preparing for litigation.

"At BakerHostetler, we believe that emerging technologies like cognitive computing and other forms of machine learning can help enhance the services we deliver to our clients," Bob Craig, chief information officer for BakerHostetler, said in a statement.

According to The Ross Intelligence website, the AI's language processing capabilities allow it to respond to questions posed by lawyers about specific laws or cases. AI Ross then provides "an instant answer with citations and suggests highly topical readings from a variety of content sources."

"ROSS is built upon Watson, IBM's cognitive computer. Watson is able to mine facts and conclusions from over a billion of these text documents a second. Meanwhile, existing solutions rely on search technologies that simply find keywords."

This is, apparently, what ROSS does, according to IBM's website.

"You ask your questions in plain English, as you would a colleague, and ROSS then reads through the entire body of law and returns a cited answer and topical readings from legislation, case law and secondary sources to get you up-to-speed quickly. In addition, ROSS monitors the law around the clock to notify you of new court decisions that can affect your case."

— TechCrunch (@TechCrunch) May 12, 2016

READ RELATED STORY: Artificial Intelligence Writes Novel, Nearly Wins Japan's Unique Literary Prize

— IBM Research (@IBMResearch) May 12, 2016

Check out IBM's video about Watson's technology below.

On Thursday, Google gifted "developers and researchers" with Parsey McParseface, the computer program it uses to understand natural language when you type it into a box or speak to Google Now. According to the company's blog,"Parsey McParseface is built on powerful machine learning algorithms that learn to analyze the linguistic structure of language, and that can explain the functional role of each word in a given sentence."

Meanwhile, AI Ross will help lawyers better serve their clients; but, for now, they cannot replace the job of an experienced attorney. However, back in 2014, Above The Law warned that artificial intelligence would overtake law eventually.

Do you think artificially intelligent lawyers can help reduce costly legal fees for those hiring lawyers? Leave your comments below.

[Image via Shutterstock]