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Craig Alexander Moderates a Panel Discussion about Lawyers’ Use of Artificial Intelligence

Craig Alexander

At the 2020 Alabama Defense Lawyers Association 2020 Ski CLE Winter Conference, Craig Alexander moderated a panel discussion on “Ethical Questions Posed by Lawyers’ Use of Artificial Intelligence.” Some key questions discussed by the panel:

  • In a world where the use of artificial intelligence (“AI”) continues to grow, does the duty of competence require that a lawyer know how an AI tool could benefit the client, and must a lawyer also understand the limitations of the AI tool?
  • Can a lawyer’s reliance on an AI tool impair the lawyer’s exercise of independent professional judgment?
  • What ethical risks does a lawyer run by acceding to a client’s direction to use an AI tool in preparing pleadings and discovery requests and responses?
  • Do the conflict of interest and confidentiality rules apply any differently to lawyers who offer and sell legal documents using an online tool, or who use legal chatbots as “lead qualifiers”?

Some key reminders:

(1) Do understand the benefits and the recognize the risks of using AI as a legal tool;

(2) Do use AI as an aid to, and not as a substitute for, your exercise of independent professional judgment;

(3) Do not let the allure of AI keep you from protecting the confidences of clients and of potential clients.

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