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Nick Holmes

Nick Holmes is Editor of this Newsletter. He is a publishing consultant specialising in the legal sector and is Managing Director of legal web services company infolaw Limited. Nick is also co-editor, with Delia Venables of the Internet for Lawyers CPD courses. He manages the infolaw UK legal web portal at infolaw.co.uk, blogs on legal information issues at Binary Law and tweets at @nickholmes. Email nickholmes@infolaw.co.uk.

Solicitors must soon attest, in respect of the practice year to 31 October 2017: “I have reflected on my practice and addressed any identified learning and development needs.” Are you in a position to do so?

Review the following précis of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) continuing competence requirements and make sure you have complied. If you feel that you have not yet complied, we can help you do so, simply and efficiently, with our CPD 2017 service.

DoNotPay

In this issue Casey Flaherty forcefully makes the case against the hype surrounding AI and robots in legal, particularly by vendors talking up their own offerings. He is also somewhat sensitive to those who call their offerings “lawyers” when they clearly are not. One such, indeed the one who has claimed “the world’s first robot lawyer” is all-of-20 Joshua Browder, a British student at Stanford University, majoring in Economics and Computer Science. Most of the legal tech press has covered the basics of Joshua’s DoNotPay robot lawyer which started off challenging parking tickets for Joshua and his friends and has now developed into a veritable bot-fest, with over 500 law bots planned in 300 areas of law across US, Canadian and UK jurisdictions.

New publications, launches and events:

Legal tech startups
Mapping the legal startup space
How AI is used in legal
eDisclosure systems
Hacking online courts
Tomorrow’s Lawyers 2.0
A chatty bot in chambers
Electronic evidence
Digital Economy Act 2017

Solicitors no longer need to count CPD hours. Instead you should now reflect on the quality of your practice and identify any learning and development needs. You can then address these needs to make sure your knowledge and skills are up to date and that you are competent to practice. The new regime requires you, […]

This article first appeared in Legal Web Watch April 2017. Legal Web Watch is a free email service which complements the Internet Newsletter for Lawyers. To receive Legal Web Watch regularly sign up here.

I don't know about you, but I have had enough of "robot lawyers". It's not that I have anything against robots, it's that the term "robot lawyers" I feel demeans lawyers; not only that, it's unfair to robots. It's a term being used purely for media purposes; nobody seriously thinks in terms of "robot lawyers".

This article first appeared in Legal Web Watch April 2017. Legal Web Watch is a free email service which complements the Internet Newsletter for Lawyers. To receive Legal Web Watch regularly sign up here.

It's now nearly 6 months since the mandatory introduction of the new Continuing Competence regime for solicitors and 4 months since the introduction of the new CPD requirements for the Bar which have similar aims. What do you need to do to comply?

This article first appeared in Legal Web Watch February 2017. Legal Web Watch is a free email service which complements the Internet Newsletter for Lawyers. To receive Legal Web Watch regularly sign up here.

I am a long-time proponent of RSS but am aware that it is declining in visibility. Many sites large and small are not offering RSS feeds any more. What’s up?

legislation.gov.ukBloomsbury Law OnlineICL Ronline

News from Legislation.gov.uk, Bloomsbury Law and ICLR.

cpd_emailad

Thanks to those who have already completed our new Internet for Lawyers CPD 2016 courses and a reminder to those who have not that you can earn all the CPD you need with us online now.

The Bar Standards Board has finally come up with draft guidelines for their new CPD scheme, commencing 1 January 2017.

For 2017 there will be no requirement to complete a set number of CPD hours. You will have individual responsibility for what training you require and you will have increased flexibility in the types of CPD activities that you can complete.

The four required stages you should complete are:

The Institute for Advanced Legal Studies (IALS) has launched OBserving Law, the IALS Open Book Service for Law, being developed as part of the School of Advanced Study’s Humanities Digital Library open access book publishing initiative.

OBserving Law aims to provide a new open access monograph publishing service for legal researchers. Titles will be made freely available in PDF and epub formats, with single volume and separate chapter versions. A print on demand paperback purchase option will be offered as standard with a hardback choice for libraries and others that may prefer that format.

upgrading-law

On 6 October 2016 Professor Richard Susskind delivered the annual Society for Computers and Law lecture, entitled “Upgrading the Law”, marking 20 years since the publication of his The Future of Law. How had he fared in his predictions?

He was not shy about confirming his successes but did not gloat and admitted that his predicted expert systems solving complex legal issues hadn’t taken off as he’d envisaged. Whilst legal and compliance rules are increasingly built into systems, the artificial intelligence that has arrived is generated by brute force processing rather than elegant, encoded reasoning.

As to recent developments and his hopes and fears for the future, I pick two that have elicited further comment.