E-Discovery » Lawyers Using Generative AI Confront Ethical Issues

Lawyers Using Generative AI Confront Ethical Issues

April 26, 2023

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Our March 31 post “Are Lawyers Welcoming Generative AI?” addresses the results of the LexisNexis survey of lawyers, law students and consumers who are using or plan to use AI. What is surprising is how many lawyers have already started working with generative AI, specifically with ChatGPT. These are some of the ways lawyers are using AI at present: legal research, contract writing and review, case outcome predictions, online dispute resolution, ediscovery and billing. If you are using AI in your law practice, you need to be aware of some ethical ramifications. We all know that one of an attorney’s ethical duties is to maintain client confidentiality. Attorneys need to discuss with their clients that AI will be used, obtain their agreement and ensure there are appropriate safeguards to shield sensitive information from unintended individuals. Make sure any AI system you use is designed to maintain privacy and security, as AI systems are prime targets for hackers. Transparency is another ethical concern. If you receive output from AI that is conflicting, ask yourself whether you would cherry-pick the language favoring your client. Always cite AI as a source and validate everything you receive to ensure there is no plagiarism. Although lawyers fear being replaced by AI, the future of AI and the profession of law is more likely to be “lawyers working with AI will replace lawyers who don’t work with AI.”

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