In this episode of The Paralegal Voice, host Vicki Voisin talks with the State Bar of Michigan practice management advisor JoAnn Hathaway about her tips to help law firms go paperless. She shares that there are many procedural steps involved in transitioning a company from a traditional filing structure to a paperless system and that it’s imperative to have a paperless policy to ensure that no one deviates from the process. She encourages any company embarking on this conversion to take inventory of their goals for going paperless and to decide what the firm hopes to accomplish by making this change. JoAnn then goes into her top ten policies that firms should implement if they are going paperless, like making your policy searchable and developing a feedback and monitoring system to determine the success of the transition, and closes the interview with suggestions of resources that law firms can utilize to simplify the process.
JoAnn L. Hathaway is a practice management advisor for the State Bar of Michigan. Ms. Hathaway previously worked as a legal liability claims director and risk manager, paralegal, and legal administrator. She is an Adobe Acrobat Certified Expert, and holds software certifications in LexisNexis Time Matters and Billing Matters software. She is active in the ABA Law Practice Division, serving on the Publications Board, Law Practice Today Editorial Board, and State and Local Bar Outreach Committee. She is a frequent speaker on law firm technology, insurance, and risk and practice management topics.
This time On the Road at the 2016 ABA Annual Meeting, hosts Sharon Nelson and John Simek speak with Electronic Frontier Foundation Executive Director Cindy Cohn, United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Federal Judge James Jones, and Chairman and Associate Professor in the Department of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School Mohammed Hafez about the ongoing quest to prevent terrorism. Mohammad mentions that the increased visibility of global terrorist attacks has given rise to a discourse about how we should best deal with this issue, by understanding the nature of terrorism and how it has evolved over the years. Judge Jones gives a brief background on the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA Court), which was established in 1978. Each judge serves as a duty judge in the court’s secure location in Washington D.C. for a week at a time to receive applications from the Department of Justice for surveillance of individuals suspected of terrorists activities. Cindy provides her thoughts on the concept of using the mechanisms of big data to predict who is going to engage in terrorist activity and the extent to which the FISA Court has approved mass surveillance procedures and programs that involve collection and/or analysis of large swathes of information. They close the interview by further investigating the versatility of terrorist organizations and how terrorism has transformed over time.e.
Cindy Cohn is the executive director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). From 2000-2015 she served as EFF’s legal director as well as its general counsel. Ms. Cohn first became involved with EFF in 1993, when the EFF asked her to serve as the outside lead attorney in Bernstein v. Dept. of Justice, the successful First Amendment challenge to the U.S. export restrictions on cryptography.
James Parker Jones is a United States federal judge for the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia and the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. He is a 1962 graduate of Duke University and a 1965 graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law.
Mohammed M. Hafez earned his Ph.D. from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 2000. He is now an associate professor in the Department of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. Previously, he served as a counterterrorism consultant to the U.S. government and visiting assistant professor of political science at the University of Missouri, Kansas City.
In this episode of Law Technology Now, host Monica Bay speaks with reporter and author Charles Duhigg about his new book, “Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business.” Charles emphasizes that a lawyer’s career is predicated upon making choices about how they spend their time and for that reason efficiency is incredibly important. The most productive people, he reveals, are the ones who create routines that allow them to differentiate between busyness and productivity. He encourages leaders to create mental models or visualizations of how any daily transaction will unfold and to make small directed company improvements, or changes to what he calls keystone habits. He continues by providing examples of how this approach, combined with carefully phrasing your proposed change, can lead to greater companywide advancements in the long term. Charles also discusses the importance of having an agile company and explains that the best way to create this culture is to empower your co-workers to make great choices. He states that empowering others to solve problems as they occur allows those individuals who can solve the problem best and who are often the closest to the issue the ability to handle these concerns as they occur. Charles closes the interview with an analysis of how crisis facilitates flexibility and provides tips on how attorneys can create the perception of potential crisis to help facilitate change.
Charles Duhigg is a Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative reporter for “The New York Times” and the author of “The Power of Habit.” He is a winner of the National Academies of Sciences, National Journalism, and George Polk awards. A graduate of Harvard Business School and Yale College, he lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two children.
In this episode of The Kennedy-Mighell Report, hosts Dennis Kennedy and Tom Mighell discuss whether it is beneficial to take a break from technology and if increased tracking of consumers through their technology is inevitable. Dennis and Tom were both recently on vacation and during this time of seclusion Dennis started to rethink his relationship with technology. His decreased use of email and sporadic access to social media led him to question if a controlled break from technology was beneficial in simplifying one’s approach to tech use. Tom stayed much more connected during his vacation and came to the conclusion that he doesn’t want to take a break from technology. Leveraging the maps, apps, and entertaining content tech provides, in his opinion, helps him to supplement the activities that he likes to do. They both encourage anyone feeling overwhelmed by tech to take an audit of their use and find ways to be more efficient and remove unsustainable habits. They end the segment with an analysis of how a complete break from technology can affect a lawyer’s practice and their relationship with their clients.
In the second segment of the podcast, Dennis and Tom take a look at the concept of tracking consumers through their technology and whether or not the growth of this trend is inevitable. Dennis admits that he is wary to enable tracking on his devices and that this caution is also why he doesn’t use social media often when he travels. However, he also recognizes that the services he relies upon like browser searches and mobile applications would be greatly improved if he enabled more tracking. Tom does feel that tracking is inevitable but also emphasizes that transparency over what is collected and control over how much you share is incredibly important to him. They both analyze what this complex social contract might look like as tracking capabilities and the categories that are tracked continue to increase. As always, stay tuned for Parting Shots, that one tip, website, or observation you can use the second the podcast ends.
In this episode of The Digital Edge, hosts Sharon Nelson and Jim Calloway speak with Legal Technology Consultant Andrew Adkins about his time as chief information officer for the law firm of Steptoe & Johnson PLLC. Andy reflects on his 23 years as a technology consultant and gives a brief breakdown of the variables that led to his move to West Virginia and employment with Steptoe & Johnson PLLC. The firm was large and successful when he arrived but, as he recalls, the information technology infrastructure was understaffed and mostly focused on day-to-day problem solving. This lack of needed staff was one of his biggest challenges as he began to expand the law firm’s IT capabilities and integrate new software to help the attorneys improve the services they provided. Andy talks about the process of building relationships among his teammates, learning their strengths and weaknesses, and the challenges he had convincing management of the necessity of continued employee training. He warns other CIOs of potential “upgrade fatigue” within their IT departments and shares how traveling to introduce himself to each branch of the company and incorporating a monthly newsletter to inform staff of upcoming tech changes helped to prepare staff for company-wide tech improvements. Andy closes the interview with an analysis of how he addressed the law firm’s cyber security needs and his list of his best and worst professional moments during his four year employment there.
Andy Adkins has been assisting law firms to improve their services to clients since the late 1980s. His career/journey has continuously led him down various paths, including a four year gig as the Chief Information Officer at Steptoe & Johnson PLLC, a large law firm based in Bridgeport, West Virginia.
The American Bar Association is one of the world’s largest voluntary professional organizations, with nearly 400,000 members and more than 3,500 entities. It is committed to doing what only a national association of attorneys can do: serve members, improve the legal profession, eliminate bias and enhance diversity, and advance the rule of law throughout the United States and around the world.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts J. Craig Williams and Bob Ambrogi join Linda Klein, president-elect of the American Bar Association, as she takes a look back at the past year as president-elect and looks ahead to her initiatives and mission under her presidency at the American Bar Association.
Linda Klein is president-elect of the American Bar Association. Linda, senior managing shareholder at Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz, assumed the role of president-elect of the American Bar Association in August 2015 at the ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago. She is presently serving a one-year term as president-elect then will become ABA president in August 2016.
In this episode of the Digital Detectives, board certified trial lawyer Craig Ball talks with Sharon Nelson and John Simek about information technology competency and the 2016 Georgetown Ediscovery Training Academy. Craig explains that the bootcamp is six days of extensive work and requires a great deal of effort on the part of the attendees for weeks before they arrive. He asserts that the program’s hour long written assessment exam, three full days of technical training, rigorous reading requirements, and week-long “meet and confer” exercise are a few of the things that differentiate this curriculum from other continuing legal education courses. Craig also shares that the goal of the program is to establish a certain level of competency and fluency in e-discovery and digital evidence and to help cultivate a passion in individuals interested in these fields. He continues by stating that lawyers graduate lacking the basic skills that are necessary to teach themselves what they need to know about information technology and this is why programs like this are so important. Craig analyzes the legal education system, the expectation of apprenticeship, and how many of the most seasoned lawyers know little or nothing about electronically stored information. He closes the interview with a discussion of where the legal profession will be in 10 years regarding tech competency and a reflection on his career today.
Craig Ball is a board certified trial lawyer, certified computer forensic examiner, law professor, and electronic evidence expert, who limits his practice to serving as a court-appointed special master and consultant in computer forensics and electronic discovery. He has served as the special master or testifying expert in computer forensics and electronic discovery in some of the most challenging and celebrated cases in the U.S.
In this episode of The Kennedy-Mighell Report, hosts Dennis Kennedy and Tom Mighell consider the increased popularity of artificial intelligence, the usefulness of chatbots, and how both innovations can impact the practice of law. Tom speculates that the current data age and the large volumes of information available for analysis have helped to enable the advancements in machine learning and artificial intelligence. Dennis explores exactly what machine learning means and explains the three current learning types: unsupervised, supervised, and reinforced. Tom finds the technology perplexing and uses the definition of Tenser Flow to illustrate how grasping these advanced concepts requires more education and technology knowledge than the average lawyer possesses. They both discuss the AI lawyer Ross and if legal professionals should gain technical knowledge in order to influence future ethical regulations with emergent technology. They end the first segment with a list of possible ways that these advancements in tech can aid lawyers in their everyday lives.
In the second segment of the podcast, Dennis and Tom talk about chatbots and how they can help lawyers with their daily tasks. Dennis proposes that they get a chatbot for the show and Tom strongly disagrees. Tom emphasizes that there are two ways to create a chatbot: programming one manually or allowing one to learn via data analysis and that he is fine observing what innovations programmers create. They both discuss how chatbots can help lawyers automate their scheduling needs and how utilizing this technology can save law practitioners valuable time. As always, stay tuned for Parting Shots, that one tip, website, or observation you can use the second the podcast ends.
The increasing societal shift toward a more global marketplace encourages many graduates to seek a multidisciplinary education. How does learning skills from various fields help students in the workplace and what value can legal knowledge add?
In this episode of Planet Lex, host Dan Rodriguez talks with Northwestern Pritzker School of Law J. Landis Martin Professor of Law & Business Emerson Tiller and Clinical Associate Professor of Law Director Leslie Oster about the new Master of Science in Law Program. Emerson shares that the goal of the program is to train individuals who come from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) backgrounds, in the ways that law can integrate the more technical aspects of business management and innovation. Leslie discusses the program’s objectives to help the students be more nimble in their problem solving and empower them with the tools to analyze issues more holistically. She also emphasizes that students who understand multiple disciplines and how they interact will be able to offer unique perspectives relative to their peers and coworkers. Emerson evaluates the benefits of having business people and entrepreneurs intermingling with law students on campus, and they both discuss how the program has attracted a 50% male to female gender balance. They close the interview with a discussion of the opportunities this program presents their graduates and how interested individuals with STEM backgrounds can enter the program.
Emerson H. Tiller joined the Northwestern University faculty in 2003 as a professor of law with a courtesy appointment at the Kellogg School of Management as professor of business law. Prior to joining the Northwestern faculty, Professor Tiller was a professor at the University of Texas, Graduate School of Business, where he also directed the Center for Business, Technology and Law. His research has primarily focused on empirical and theoretical analyses of political forces in regulatory and judicial decision-making.
Leslie Oster is a clinical associate professor of law at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law. Before coming to Northwestern in 2012, Leslie worked in a variety of administrative and academic positions in legal education. She was the dean of students at Berkeley’s law school for 11 years and also held positions as special assistant to the dean at the University of San Diego School of Law and assistant dean for strategic planning at the University of Texas at Austin. She has taught a variety of skills classes and classes on the courts, as an instructor at University of California, Hastings College of the Law, director of legal writing at University of California, Berkeley, director of lawyering skills at the University of San Diego, and a senior lecturer at University of Texas at Austin. Prior to her career in legal education, Leslie worked as a city attorney and clerked in the California Courts of Appeal. She received her law and undergraduate degrees from University of California, Berkeley. At Northwestern, Leslie is teaching medical innovation and working on new academic initiatives, including the Master of Science in Law degree, a one year master’s degree for STEM-trained students.
If you think the legal industry’s future depends on small and big firms working together, you might be from MaRS. By MaRS, we mean the Canadian-based MaRS Discovery District (originally named Medical and Related Sciences) and its recent project to innovate the legal profession.
In this episode of Law Technology Now, host Monica Bay interviews Aron Solomon and Jason Moyse, the co-founders of recent MaRS startup LegalX. Together, they talk about today’s transition from the big firm model of yesterday in favor of more nimble practices traditionally found in smaller firms and startups. Although there will always be a need for Biglaw on large, highly profitable matters, 80% of the U.S. market is priced out of legal services. That unmet need has become a primary driver in sweeping change to the legal industry.
So, what do these driving forces mean for the future of law? Monica, Aron, and Jason take turns answering that question with their forecasts of the legal market for the next 2-5 years. Not only will this near future continue to see big firms receding, but it will also usher in an era of innovation. Legal solutions made on one side of the globe will be solving problems on the other. Even more surprising, it is predicted that Biglaw will collaborate with small firms to produce more comprehensive offerings at lower prices. Tune in to hear more about the future of law as seen from MaRS.
Aron Solomon is the innovation lead at LegalX, a startup from MaRS Discovery District that specializes in connecting technologists, designers, engineers, and lawyers to drive innovation in the legal sector. Prior to that, he was ED at Ed, entrepreneur in residence at i.c. Stars, and co-founder and vision holder at SVBstance. In addition, Aron has served as Global Managing Partner at Futurlogic, CEO at Think Global School, and founder for The Mission Group.
Jason Moyse is the industry lead at LegalX, a startup from MaRS Discovery District that specializes in connecting technologists, designers, engineers, and lawyers to drive innovation in the legal sector. Prior to that, he was the manager of legal business solutions at Elevate Services, director of innovation execution at Cognition LLP, and director of service delivery at McCarthy Tétrault. In addition, Jason has been legal counsel and program manager to Xerox Canada.