Interest in Future Law Grows: The Future Is Now 2.018

the-future-is-now-2018Our future law conference is back! Every year, interest in future law topics grows. The number of legal tech start-ups continues to increase. Developments in technology enable more efficient work. And we are not just talking about speeding up the current processes. They also are completely changing the ways we do our work. And the ways we communicate and collaborate to accomplish our work.

Chief Justice Lloyd Karmeier will open the day with an exhortation from the Court about the importance of innovation and the need for lawyers to address new ways to better serve clients.

Once again, leading thinkers in the future law space will share their perspectives in The Future is Now: Legal Services 2.018. Similar to 2016 and 2017, the format will be two speakers delivering short TED-like talks and then sitting down to engage with participants in moderated town hall discussions. You will have a chance to ask questions and get more feedback from the speakers. The idea of this conference is to have meaningful conversations among legal professionals that challenge the status quo–challenge us to provide better services to more people.

The conference is May 2, 2018 at VenueSIX10, 610 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago from 10 am to 4:45 pm with a reception to follow. The conference qualifies for five hours of professional responsibility CLE, including one half hour of diversity-inclusion CLE.

You should register soon—we expect a sell-out crowd.

2.018 Future Law Talks

Here’s a quick preview of the talks:

Nicole Black. Author, journalist, and influencer in the legal tech space, Nicole will challenge everyday practitioners to “practice with the machines.” In Nicole’s opinion, AI is not at a point where your average solo or small firm practitioner can or should use it.  But there are tools they can and should be using today to automate their law practices.

Ed Walters. CEO of Fastcase and adjunct law professor of “The Law of Robots,” Ed will upend the paradigm that lawyers add value for experience that amounts to “hunches.”  Hunches may be malpractice in this data-driven world.  Ed will explore whether lawyers’ ethical rules may require lawyers to collect and analyze data.

John Levi. Partner at Sidley & Austin and Chairman of Legal Services Corporation Board, John Levi questions how the profession, founded on the guiding principle of equal justice for all, can rest when most low-income Americans are forced to handle most civil legal matters without representation. One light in the darkness: technology has been leveraged by the LSC to equip volunteers to more strategically approach the large volume of matters affecting nearly 60 million Americans without access to legal representation who quality for LSC-funded civil legal assistance.

Kristen Sonday. Co-founder and COO of Paladin, Entrepreneur in Residence at 1871 in Chicago, Kristen points out that female and Black/Latinx entrepreneurs receive paltry amounts of tech venture capital investments. In an industry pushing to increase diversity in its ranks, law provides touchpoints where we can support entrepreneurs to identify and solve problems that have long gone unnoticed– especially around access to justice.

Josh King. Chief Legal Officer of Avvo, Josh is responsible for all of the organization’s legal, government relations, and customer service functions. He proposes that lawyers should embrace standardization.  By embracing processes that address clients’ legal problems on time and with no surprises, we can meet the needs of our clients and the millions of Americans without access to affordable and attainable access to justice.

Nicole Bradick. Founder and CEO of legal product design and development firm, serial entrepreneur in the legal tech space, Nicole argues that law has “an interface problem.” Technology alone has not moved the needle on the access to justice problem.  To see meaningful change, the profession must create more impactful digital products and improve the overall system of how we deliver legal services to the masses.

Thomas Hamilton. VP of Strategy and Operations, ROSS Intelligence, Tom will argue that AI is here and, contrary to popular belief, relevant even to solo and small firm practitioners. This once theoretical technology now has practical applications for all. Artificial intelligence is officially leveling the playing field for all legal professionals.

Susan Nevelow Mart. Associate Professor & Director of Law Library, University of Colorado Law School, Susan will peel back the layers of the research onion. Search algorithms given the same search terms to find cases in the same jurisdictional case database yield dramatically different results.  Does algorithmic variability give rise to yet another new ethical obligation to competently or better serve clients?

Jane DiRenzo Pigott. Managing Director R3 Group, and former Commissioner of our Professionalism Commission, Jane will give us straight talk about the importance of retaining diverse talent.  Retaining diverse talent requires a different set of skills for most of the industry. If employers emphasize strategic talent development, they will reap the rewards of a measurable return on investment for both bottom line and its employees.

Toussaint Romain. Assistant Public Defender, Charlotte Public Defender’s Office and adjunct professor, University of North Carolina-Charlotte, Toussaint isn’t one to wait around for someone else to take action.  He lives the adage that “a lawyer is either a social engineer or a parasite on society.” He argues that we can serve our clients and heal the system, too. You won’t want to miss him tell you how.

Join Us

I am so excited about this conference!  You may remember being at a conference that caused you to think radically differently—or even changed the trajectory of your career.  If you haven’t yet, you will on May 2. Plan to attend. You won’t be sorry.






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