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LegalTech: Hype or Reality?

The adoption and adoption of technology often follows Amara’s law [1], popularized by Gartner with the so-called hype cycle [2]. New technology is often hyped first, and expectations are quickly set too high. If the new technology does not fully meet expectations, people will quickly become disappointed and lose interest in the new technology. However, developments continue, and expectations are slowly being realized with (often only after twenty years—the duration of one age generation) major changes. Think of the internet hype around the turn of the millennium: we are now twenty years later, and many of the expectations set then have now been fulfilled.

A similar turn of events is expected with the adoption of legal technologies. Since the hype of the 1990s, we have now entered the “productivity” phase, where lawyers can no longer avoid using technology in various legal applications.

Source: Wikipedia -

In the United States and Europe, there are more than three thousand new startups in the field of LegalTech. Next to FinTech, it is one of the most invested industries [3]. This stormy development of legal technologies cannot be stopped. Much of the simpler work that lawyers now do manually will soon be automated. In the medium term, lawyers as well as consumers will be supported in more complex legal processes. It may well be that we not only allow this but even make it mandatory. Experience shows that lawyers who are supported by this type of technology ultimately make better decisions. In the next section, we will explain in more detail why this is the case, examining artificial intelligence and machine learning in particular.


[1] See:

[2] For more explanation, see:

[3] See, among others, the recent presentation by Daniel Katz for Bucerius Center for Legal Technology and Data Science in Hamburg: