The ChatGPT Lawyer

Are lawyers being replaced? Not so fast!

Could ChatGPT fill gaps in the arena of access to justice? Cautiously, yes.

Could it contribute to efficiency? Perhaps!

Can it successfully level the playing field for self-represented litigants? Not yet!

The reticence in my answers should not be surprising. ChatGPT has been around for a mere four months. While any help we can get as lawyers to be more time and cost-efficient in the delivery of our services is welcomed, this AI model is certainly not ready to be fully deployed as a lawyer substitute.

I appreciate the very insightful and enriching information shared on March 8th by the panellists assembled by the Centre for Law, Technology and Society, University of Ottawawho discussed the topic: The ChatGPT Lawyer: Opportunities and Risks of Generative AI for the Legal Profession”.

It appears ChatGPT is still somewhat in its infancy but doing some good work I hear, for example, answering very basic legal questions, performing quick legal assessments, summarizing cases and other meaningful help.  Its capabilities, however, are tempered by some standout downsides, for example, some jurisdictional blind spots, some nonsensical answers and some social biases.

It’s definitely not a “plug and play” and there could be GIGO effects – “garbage in garbage out”.

I am curious to find that article on a judge who used ChatGPT to write a legal ruling! Imagine that!

ChatGPT may simply need more time with legal technology wiz teams.

I estimate that ChatGPT can and likely will, in the future, complement our work as lawyers. For now, ChatGPT must endure a learning curve and be tested, tried and proven before we can delegate some work to our new hire!