Must Lawyers Get Along With Tech?
Whether it’s just being proficient with word processing and email (including the use of attachments), or being able to navigate around in a cloud-based case management portal, or knowing enough to not embarrass oneself on social media, in these modern times, lawyers really can’t afford to not get along with technology.
While a client may not care that much if your law firm is green, if you can’t use email, or even provide more advanced tech that another firm boasts having and using, the client will care. Modern computing technology is central to daily life for most people now, and not using it could be a clear sign to clients of inefficiency or even incompetence. What’s worse, not knowing enough about technologies relevant to a case could result in an ethics violation.
Accept It, Love It, Use It
Television, radio, and every other sort of media have all been revolutionized by the internet and computers and other electronic devices. Technology has even changed the way people shop for everything, from housing, to food, to a spouse. Content, information, and communications are more readily available than ever before. And with all the upheaval to modern life, technology has also changed the way lawyers and courts do business.
But apart from the technology that makes practicing law easier, more efficient, or cheaper, the biggest changes, and the ones that threaten the profession, are still on the horizon and involve automating legal processes for legal consumers, adversaries, and law firms. The future for lawyers, like every other industry, is one dominated by technology. This future is already taking shape as demand for legal services continues to grow, but the demand for law firms to provide those services remains flat (due to consumer legal tech stepping in).
Tech Savvy Lawyer or Tech Leader Lawyer?
Due to the way technology is changing the landscape of the practice of law, attorneys no longer have the option to be technologically incompetent. Basically, for a lawyer to remain competitive in today’s market, they will either need to be tech savvy enough to use all the tech their peers are using, or they will need to be on the cutting edge leading the legal technological revolution.