How to make the most of AI in your legal department

 Léna Dridi Léna Dridi
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Léna Dridi
May 9, 2024

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As a Legal Counsel and Legal Ops at DiliTrust, I lead the implementation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered tools within legal departments.

DiliTrust is a twenty-seven years old French LegalTech providing an all-in-one SaaS solution designed for legal and corporate governance activities. We offer five integrated modules covering everything from the management of the contracts’ lifecycle to litigations including entities and board meetings. We also offer a secured data room, to perform business transactions or M&A processes without the risk of data leakage or any other corruptive action. This unified suite allows our customers to follow all their activities in one secured space with in-house artificial intelligence features.

Before joining DiliTrust, I worked on the implementation of AI powered tools within my previous legal department at Qonto.

In this article, I’m going to share with you my practical insights on how to make the most of artificial intelligence in a legal department.

Why would a legal department need AI?

When I started my career as an in-house counsel, I was everyday immersed in a whirlwind of tasks: contracts to review, emails to sort, legal matters to address. It's a never-ending stream of repetitive tasks, with deadlines always around the corner. But as I was going through it all, I couldn’t help but wonder—is there a smarter way to get things done?

My curiosity led me to discover a world where machines could take on those tedious jobs, leaving me and my team free to focus on the big picture. That's the power of AI in the legal field.

What could be the benefits of AI in a legal department?

We are facing more work than ever before, and the old ways of doing things just aren't cutting it anymore. Tasks like reviewing documents and drafting contracts take up a ton of time, leaving little room for anything else. Plus, doing the same things over and over again increases the chances of making mistakes. It's becoming clear that traditional methods can't keep up with the demands of today's legal landscape.

AI has the power to change the game in legal work. It can tackle tasks like reviewing documents, analyzing contracts, doing due diligence, and even helping with legal research. Imagine having a super-smart assistant that can sift through piles of paperwork in no time, flagging important information and spotting potential issues. With AI on your side, you can save hours of manual labor and focus on what really matters.

AI's precision means fewer errors, reducing the risk of costly mistakes and legal headaches down the line. Also, by streamlining workflows and cutting down on manual labor, the adoption of AI can lead to significant cost savings for legal departments.

Now, let me give you my step-by-step guide to help you power your legal department with AI tools.

Step 1: The Power of AI in Contract Management

Let's start with what I consider to be the first step in equipping your legal department with AI-tools.

Contracts are a fundamental aspect of legal work and often involve a significant amount of repetitive tasks. Here are a few practical examples:

  • Templates: AI can be used to create templates for commonly used contracts, streamlining the drafting process and ensuring consistency across documents.

  • Contract Review: AI can assist with contract review by automatically identifying key clauses, potential risks, and deviations from standard terms.

  • Contract Storage: A contract module that integrates both optical character recognition (OCR) and AI can give you the possibility, when you load a contract, to have the relevant terms automatically identified. The tool will populate a contract summary sheet for you, and you will avoid having to enter the information manually. 

By focusing on contract management as a starting point, your legal department will realize immediate benefits from AI implementation. You will make it a natural first step in the journey of adopting AI.

Step 2: Transforming Litigation Management 

Not only AI can transform the way you do contract management, but it can also revolutionize your litigation process. Here is how:

  • Advanced Search Capabilities: AI algorithms can perform sophisticated searches across legal databases, quickly retrieving relevant case law, statutes, and precedents to support legal arguments and decision-making.

  • Predictive Analytics: By analyzing historical case data and outcomes, AI-powered litigation tools can provide valuable insights and predictions regarding case strategies, settlement likelihoods, and potential risks.

  • Case Assessment and Risk Management: AI algorithms can assess the strengths and weaknesses of a case, identify potential risks, and recommend optimal strategies for litigation or settlement.

  • Automated Document Review: Imagine you've received a court decision or you've got a court summons, you can load it into the platform, which will fill in all the fields for you, rather than typing them in. Litigation tools powered by AI can swiftly analyze large volumes of legal documents, including case files, pleadings, and evidence, saving significant time and effort for legal teams.

Step 3:  Maximizing Board Meetings Efficiency with AI

Board meetings are crucial gatherings where key decisions are made, and effective management is essential for smooth operations. The preparation, the conduct as well as the reporting of the meetings can significantly be eased thanks to AI-powered LegalTech tools:

  • Agenda Creation: AI automates the process of creating meeting agendas by identifying relevant topics, organizing them logically, and generating comprehensive agendas tailored to the needs of the board.

  • AI-Generated Minutes of the Meeting: AI technology can automatically generate accurate and detailed minutes of board meetings by transcribing discussions, summarizing key points, and highlighting action items and decisions made during the meeting.

  • Summary of Board Documents: AI technology provides concise summaries of board documents by automatically extracting key information and insights from reports, presentations, and other materials.

The Risks of AI Adoption for Legal Departments 

Let’s face it, while AI presents tremendous opportunities, it also entails risks. We need to be cautious, because this technology is still evolving today. AI can still make mistakes.

Complex legal decisions can't be made by AI; they require in-depth human analysis. For example, you can't just use AI for a dismissal.  

To mitigate these risks, legal departments must proactively address them.

Here are a few measures you can take:

  • Establish Clear Oversight: Designate individuals or teams responsible for overseeing AI systems and ensuring compliance with legal and ethical standards.

  • Regular Audits and Assessments: Conduct periodic audits and assessments of AI algorithms and processes to identify potential errors, biases, or vulnerabilities.

  • Continuous Training and Education: Provide ongoing training and education to legal department members on AI technologies, including their capabilities, limitations, and potential risks.

A Revolution of the Legal Practice 

With the rise of the AI-powered LegalTech Tools, the way we work and the speed with which we do things will change considerably. We are about to experience a complete change of habits.

As AI systems become more prevalent, there will be a growing demand for skilled legal professionals to implement, and use these technologies. New job opportunities will come, perhaps even new departments will be created.  

Legal departments need to be ready to address this revolution. In order to stay competitive, it is crucial for you to know what can be done, and how you can leverage AI to gain efficiency.

If you are interested in how we are revolutionizing legal activities at DiliTrust, here is a link to our website. Feel free to contact me at to have more insights on how your legal department can surf the AI wave!