Amid the buzz around legal innovation, many companies, startups and law firm subsidiaries augmentation services have embraced the term “law new.” It’s often equated to alternatives to the traditional law firm model but it’s more than that.
The concept is actually about a different way of helping clients that’s as much about strategy as it is about technology, process and expertise. A well thought out plan making use of law new techniques can help a firm to offer the kind of assistance that some clients need without impacting other areas of practice that might be its primary focus.
Unlike the tepid changes that have occurred over the past fifteen years, law new is not about internal efficiency, process or multidisciplinary skills. It’s about paradigm change that has a significant customer/end-user impact and that is driven by a desire to create value for business and society as a whole.
This means a legal industry that more closely resembles its corporate customers and society at large. It will be more cognitively, demographically and culturally diverse and include a workforce that’s more creative, tech and data-proficient and empathetic. It will have a more integrated and fluid delivery structure that leverages legal technology platforms, shares data, pools expertise, addresses cost takeout targets and drives business opportunities. It will also be more collaborative, both internally with the enterprise and with the broader ecosystem of business partners and customers.
An example is the pharmaceutical industry’s collaboration in developing and delivering Covid-19 vaccines. Another is the automotive industry’s routine collaboration in research and development, joint ventures and other collaboration mechanisms. These partnerships produce products and services that deliver significant value to consumers, drive profitability for the business and improve the experience and quality of life of the people who use their goods and services.
As an example of this, Governor Kathy Hochul signed legislation today that strengthens protections against deed theft (fraudulent acquisition of property titles) by enabling District Attorneys to pause related eviction and ownership dispute proceedings and expanding the list of crimes that can trigger voiding of fraudulent instruments. This legislation is the latest in a series of reforms to address this growing issue. Read the full legislation: