Missed covering this on National Paralegals Day, but this article from Sheila Grela provides excellent generative AI advice for paralegals!
The article is published by NALA (Generative AI, Legal Technology, & Durable Skills – Q4 2023 Facts & Findings, available here) and Sheila (who coordinates the excellent weekly Virtual Lunch with Leaders educational program for the San Diego Paralegal Association) gets right after it in the first paragraph when she says: “Does the suggestion that AI may reduce or eliminate paralegal work cause anxiety? Yes. Should it? No! Ultimately, AI will provide more work for savvy professionals.”
She also points this out, which is absolutely true and not recognized enough by the legal community: “It is well known that paralegals adapt to new technology amazingly well. Paralegals quickly adopted virtual meetings and conquered other new software and devices at the pandemic’s start.”
Her generative AI advice for paralegals includes references to several useful resources to boost learning, including EDRM’s white paper Professional Responsibility Considerations in AI for eDiscovery: Competence, Confidentiality, Privacy and Ownership (which I covered here) and the Principles for the Responsible Use of Generative AI in Legal proposed by the MIT Task Force and covered by Stephanie Wilkins of Legaltech® News here and me here.
When it comes to the need for paralegals in the future as AI continues to evolve, Sheila addresses the topic directly:
“There will always be a need for paralegals because AI does not create, conceptualize, or plan strategically. It cannot empathize with the scared or confused client when it emails those interrogatory questions. Within the legal realm, who will step in to fill the need for technologists to have the ability to understand and use generative AI? Not surprisingly, it is anticipated that paralegals will.”
While Sheila’s article provides terrific generative AI advice for paralegals, the concepts and resources she discusses apply to anyone in the legal industry. I won’t spoil any more of her thunder in this post, check out the full article here!
So, what do you think? Are you concerned about job security in the era of generative AI? Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.
Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by my employer, my partners or my clients. eDiscovery Today is made available solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscovery Today should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.