Podcast category: Legal Technology

Kennedy-Mighell Report

Revisiting Technology: The Paperless Office

Over the past 20 years or so, lawyers have consistently seen the paperless office as the Holy Grail of legal technology. Unfortunately, most attempts to find that grail have ended under a stack of papers. Despite early setbacks, a new flurry of interest in the paperless office. Within the series of revisiting old legal technology concepts under current circumstances, has new technology revived the paperless concept?

In this episode of The Kennedy-Mighell Report, Dennis Kennedy and Tom Mighell reexamine the paperless office, survey the current process of going paperless, and speculate as to whether the era of the paperless office might have actually arrived. Kennedy muses the “if it comes to you in paper, it stays in paper” mentality of lawyers. While he points out that many of the themes around going paperless are processor powers, speed, bandwidth, the cloud, smartphones, and apps, his true hangup is with storage and organization. With an optimistic mentality, Mighell discusses getting more lawyers to use scanners, making sure they are never presented with paper copies, and how apps like Genius Scan and Evernote can facilitate the process of going completely paperless. Both Kennedy and Mighell agree that the only way to effectively go paperless is to start with a process and build good habits. Luckily, it’s tax season!

In the second part of this podcast, Kennedy and Mighell discuss why some lawyers still prefer WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS over Microsoft Word. As always, stay tuned for Parting Shots, that one tip, website, or observation that you can use the second the podcast ends.

Special thanks to our sponsor, ServeNow.

Digital Detectives

Forensic Science in the Criminal Justice System: What is Admissible?

There have been several programs looking at exoneration of people previously convicted of crimes. This includes The Innocence Project, currently boasting 325 DNA exonerations, and a project of the University of Michigan Law School that works on cases in which DNA is unavailable. The latter project has exonerated 1,553 individuals when we recorded this podcast. As it turns out, many of these people were convicted based on forensic science that was later proved to not be scientifically valid. So, what particular forensic disciplines are actually valid in the criminal justice system?

In this episode of Digital Detectives, Sharon Nelson and John Simek interview Judge David Waxse about the 2009 report by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the relationship between bad science and wrongful convictions, and how to improve the use of forensic science in the criminal justice system. The NAS report, Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward, found that with the exception of DNA, no forms of forensic science comply with scientific methodology. Waxse discusses the jury’s confidence in unproven science experts and witness testimony and the resulting wrongful convictions. He explains why people are just now becoming concerned with the 2009 report and discusses why The Willingham Case is relevant. Waxse plans to hold a symposium in April 2015 at Northwestern Law School in Chicago to consider with experts how to educate judges and lawyers in the criminal justice system about this issue.

Judge David Waxse is a United States magistrate judge for the United States District Court in Kansas City, Kansas. He received his BA Degree from the University of Kansas and his JD from the Columbia University School of Law. He is a past president of the Kansas Bar Association and current chair of the American Bar Association Judicial Division.

The Florida Bar Podcast

Judge Robert Hilliard on Technology in the Court, Access to Public Records, and the Paperless Docket

The State of Florida takes access to public records very seriously, but it also prioritizes the privacy of its citizens. Through sustained efforts and the use of technology, Florida is finding ways to meet both objectives while decreasing the associated costs. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, co-hosts Adriana Linares and Renee Thompson interview Judge Robert Hilliard from the First Judicial Circuit of Florida. Together, they discuss how the State of Florida is implementing technology to lower costs, increase public access, and improve the performance of both judges and attorneys. Tune in to hear how judges are utilizing a new paperless docket system and lawyers are taking advantage of technology to present their cases in court.

Judge Robert Hilliard is a county judge with the First Judicial Circuit of Florida. Prior to residing on the bench, his honor began his legal career in the computer industry where he had worked for 20 years before becoming a member of the Bar. Through his volunteer work, Judge Hilliard calls upon his experiences to improve the practice of law and the judiciary through use of technology.

Lawyer 2 Lawyer

Driverless Cars: Who’s “Driving” and Who’s Responsible?

Are you tired of driving yourself to work? Have you always wanted a chauffeur but never could afford one? If this sounds like you, then happy days are here with the advent of the driverless car. Institutions like Google, Carnegie Mellon, and Uber are developing what they hope to be totally autonomous vehicles capable of ushering passengers to and from destinations without the need for a human driver. But what does that mean for the law, safety standards, and our freedoms?

In this episode of Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host J. Craig Williams interviews attorney and author of Robots Are People Too John Weaver, researcher and writer for Michigan Auto Law Todd Berg, and litigator and author of Motorista Anna Eby. Together they discuss liability for passengers, possible federal regulations, and risks associated with vehicle hacks. In addition, they debate when the government might pilot your driverless car, how medical emergencies in autonomous vehicles will be handled, and the possibility of the repo man summoning your automobile. Tune in to hear about existing driverless car laws and much much more!

John Weaver is the author of Robots Are People Too, which explains amendments to existing laws that will become necessary as artificial intelligence and autonomous technology become more widespread. In addition, he is a contributing writer for Slate magazine, addressing similar topics, and an associate attorney at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP where, among many areas, he provides legal services for property acquisition, financing, and development projects.

Todd Berg is a former trial attorney and legal news reporter with Michigan Lawyers Weekly. Today he provides analytical research and writing support to the attorneys at Michigan Auto Law, a firm entirely dedicated to the representation of clients involved in auto accidents. They boast the largest auto/truck verdict in their home state during the last 15 years and guarantee a victory for their clients or they won’t charge a dime.

Anna Eby is a business litigator and appellate attorney in Austin, Texas, where she represents businesses and individuals in complex commercial disputes before Texas state, federal, and appellate courts. In addition and relevant to our episode, she is an avid car photographer and motorsports attendee who maintains a car blog called, Motorista, which covers legal issues in the automotive industry.

Special thanks to our sponsor, Clio.

Kennedy-Mighell Report

LegalTech New York Recap and the Current State of Smartwatches

As a great show for seeing what’s new and happening in legal technology, learning about new products from vendors, and networking with other attorneys, LegalTech New York is the big place to launch new legal technology products and services. For the 2015 event, host Dennis Kennedy braved inclement weather and flight cancellations in order to attend the event.

In this episode of The Kennedy-Mighell Report, Tom Mighell interviews Dennis Kennedy about LegalTech New York 2015, covering highlights from the show and what this year’s event might tell us about future trends in legal technology. As always, e-discovery was a big topic, with an estimated 54% of the vendors falling within the e-discovery category. Kennedy speculates that information governance will be a focus for 2015 as the legal community shifts toward records management, predictive coding, and TAR (Technology Assisted Review). This year boasted fewer new product announcements but many upgrades and new generations. Some interesting collaboration and matter management tools were announced, and Kennedy shares the coolest new thing he saw: an analytics tool that takes a dashboard approach with a user interface reminiscent of an app.

In the second part of the podcast, Kennedy and Mighell discuss the current state of smartwatches, anticipation of the new Apple Watch (due out in a few months), and the benefits of wearable technology as an organizational tool, activity tracker, and a more socially aware way of monitoring phone activity. While Mighell says he won’t be converting to the Apple Watch from his Android Moto 360 any time soon, he is curious to see what level of success the gold Apple Watch will have, rumored to be priced at $5,000. As always, stay tuned for Parting Shots, that one tip, website, or observation that you can use the second the podcast ends.

Special thanks to our sponsor, ServeNow.

Special Reports

ABA Midyear Meeting 2015: The ABA Journal with Allen Pusey

Legal Talk Network Producer Laurence Colletti interviews ABA Journal Editor and Publisher Allen Pusey. He discusses the Journal as an overall publishing platform including a website, the directory of blogs, daily and weekly newsletters, podcasts, webinars, seminars and more. He also talks about the 100th Anniversary edition of the journal and what they have planned for the next year. Allen Pusey is an experienced reporter and special projects editor who has been with the ABA Journal since 2007 and became the editor and publisher in October 2011.

Special Reports

ABA Midyear Meeting 2015: Marketing Ethics Online with Michael Downey

The Law Practice Division (LPD) Legal Marketing Interest Group Chair Jason Marsh interviews immediate past chair of the LPD Chair Michael Downey at the 2015 ABA Midyear Meeting. Downey discusses what lawyers and law firms can do to market their businesses ethically, the variance between states when advertising online, and how he became featured in large publications like The New York Times and Wall Street Journal Law Blog. He advises young lawyers to become known in a niche market, find a way to build online credibility through a blog for example, and develop real relationships in order to be successful in their practice. After working in a large law firm for 15 years, Michael Downey started a solo practice this year advising law firms on legal ethics and risk management issues and representing lawyers and clients in lawyer discipline and legal malpractice matters.

The Digital Edge

The Ethical Misadventures of Luddite Lawyers

Luddite: a person opposed to increased industrialization or new technology.

As we’ve heard time and time again, many lawyers are averse to becoming knowledgeable about modern technology. Older attorneys often do not want to learn a computer-based management tool and feel as though they can hire someone to manage the security and encryption of their sensitive information. Often, even having a young lawyer in the firm can seem like a solution since they will most likely have grown up with a certain level of technology knowledge. But none of these are valid excuses to a proper level of technological education. The luddite lawyers need to face the ethical implications of their ignorance.

In this episode of The Digital Edge, Sharon Nelson and Jim Calloway interview lawyer and legal technology blogger Sam Glover about when technology became an issue for attorneys, how they can get in trouble due to ignorance, and what all attorneys need to know about hackers, cloud services, and the resulting ethical duties. First, Glover explains that lawyers are getting into trouble in the courtroom by not knowing about how technologies like Twitter work, therefore losing cases that could be easily won. Concerning cyber security, Glover discusses the many reasons lawyers cannot simply outsource technology knowledge:

  1. Without a certain amount of tech knowledge, you cannot adequately hire a security consultant.
  2. Basic technology competency is not taught in law school or college, and is not self-explanatory.
  3. Amateur hackers can easily access your client data in in public places like coffee shops through open, unsecure networks.
  4. Whether they like it or not, all lawyers are in the cloud, so they need to learn about encryption and secure servers.

Simply put, you cannot avoid technology as a lawyer anymore. There are courses, blogs, webinars, books, and many other ways to become educated about legal technology.

Sam Glover is a lawyer and the CEO and Editor-in-Chief of Lawyerist.com, an online magazine and reference manual for solo and small firm lawyers. He has been writing about technology, law practice management, marketing, and other legal information on Lawyerist since he started it in 2007.

Special Reports

ABA Midyear Meeting 2015: Science and Technology Law Section with Michael Hawes

Legal Talk Network Host Adriana Linares interviews Chair of the Science and Technology Law Section Michael Hawes at the 2015 ABA Midyear Meeting. This section exists because science and technology are always improving, Hawes says, and the law seems to simply play catch-up. He discusses the different groups within the section focusing on biotechnology, space law, robotics, and information security and he encourages any lawyers interested in these subjects to get involved. Previously an electrical engineer, Michael Hawes is now a partner at Baker Botts LLP in Houston, focusing his practice on assisting individuals and companies who are resolving disputes over technology access and ownership.

Special Reports

ABA Midyear Meeting 2015: Avvo for Lawyers with Dan Lear

Legal Talk Network Host Jason Marsh interviews Dan Lear from Avvo at the 2015 ABA Midyear Meeting. Lear explains that Avvo is an online legal marketplace where lawyers can improve their client visibility. Many lawyers can greatly benefit from claiming and improving their Avvo listing. This includes lawyers doing client-facing legal work like consumer practices, bankruptcy, divorce lawyer, criminal defense, business law, and estate planning. As the director of industry relations at Avvo, Dan Lear reaches out to bar associations, industry groups, lawyers, and law schools to discuss the intersection between technology and legal work.

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