By: Patrick Austin
Thursday, August 10, 2023
How to Effectively Use AI Contract Review Software
Contract review is a critical process in the legal industry that requires meticulous attention to detail and a thorough understanding of complex legal language. Traditional contract review methods can be time-consuming and prone to human errors.
However, advancements in technology, specifically in the form of AI contract review software (along with contract analytics and legal document analysis), have revolutionized the way legal professionals examine and analyze contracts. This new breed of software tools helps lawyers save time, reduce errors, and improve overall efficiency. However, to get the most out of this quickly advancing legal tool, legal professionals must understand what this type of software is and how it works.
This article provides guidance to help you build appropriate knowledge base to implement and use AI contract review software in your practice.
What is AI Contract Review Software?
AI contract review software are computer programs that use analytics to read, understand, and extract relevant information from standard and custom contracts. AI contract review software (along with document review software) assists attorneys and legal professionals in identifying key clauses, obligations, risks, and opportunities in contracts.
Furthermore, contract review software assists attorneys and legal professionals in comparing contracts with specific standards, best practices, and market benchmarks. AI technologies can also assist attorneys and legal professionals in generating summaries, reports, and insights from contracts while also flagging any issues or anomalies that require attention.
Using AI Software in Your Legal Practice
While AI software for contract review offers numerous benefits, there are also challenges that organizations may face in its implementation. Overcoming these challenges is essential to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of AI software. Here are some key challenges and strategies for addressing them:
Data Quality and Quantity
AI software relies on high-quality and sufficient training data to provide accurate contract analysis. Ensuring the quality and adequacy of the data can be a challenge, as contracts may vary in format and content. Legal professionals can address this challenge by curating a diverse and representative dataset and incorporating a variety of contract types and clauses. Regularly updating and expanding the dataset can further enhance the software's performance.
AI software needs to comply with legal and regulatory requirements, especially when dealing with sensitive and confidential information. Legal professionals should ensure that the software adheres to data privacy and security standards. They should also consider any legal restrictions or limitations on the use of AI software for contract review and ensure compliance with relevant laws and regulations.
Integration with Existing Systems
Integrating AI software with existing systems, such as contract management platforms or document repositories, can be a complex task. Legal professionals should evaluate the compatibility of the software with their existing infrastructure and consider any necessary modifications or adjustments. Seamless integration can facilitate data flow and enhance operational efficiency.
How to Use AI-Powered Contract Review Tools
Using AI software for contract review can bring numerous benefits in terms of efficiency and accuracy. However, to make the most out of this technology, it is crucial to follow certain guidelines and best practices as set forth below.
Find a Trustworthy Vendor
Selecting the right AI contract review software is one of the first steps towards effective utilization. It's critical to throroughly vet vendors and the tools they back, by considering factors such as the software's track record, reputation, user-friendliness, and compatibility with existing systems. Additionally, look for software that offers the specific features and functionalities you require for contract analysis.
Prepare Your Law Firm to Adopt AI Software
Once you’ve found a good tool, your organization will need to ensure user adoption and provide adequate training for employees. Training sessions or workshops can familiarize users with the software's functionalities, features, and interpretations. Ongoing support and communication channels for addressing user queries or feedback can further facilitate smooth adoption.
Onboard Your New Software
AI software needs to be trained to recognize patterns, clauses, and legal concepts specific to your industry and organization. Provide the software with sufficient quality training data to ensure accurate contract analysis. Regularly update and fine-tune the training data to keep up with changes in your industry or legal requirements.
Clearly define the objectives of your contract review process. Identify the specific elements, clauses, or risks you want the AI software to focus on. By having clear objectives, you can streamline the review process and ensure that the software provides the insights you need.
While AI software can enhance accuracy, it is always advisable to validate and cross-check its results. Have a system in place to validate the software's findings against expert human review. This validation step helps ensure the software is providing accurate and reliable results.
Effectively utilizing AI software for contract review involves selecting the right software, understanding the technology, training the software, establishing clear objectives, validating results, collaborating with legal experts, and continuously improving the software's performance. By following these guidelines, you can maximize the benefits of AI software in contract review and ensure accurate, efficient, and compliant contract analysis.
Ready to Learn More?
NBI offers a wide range of AI CLE courses designed to keep attorneys aware and informed of the benefits and risks of using generative artificial intelligence in the practice of law.
Patrick Austin is an attorney specializing in administrative law, including regulatory and compliance matters with experience working in both the public and private sector. Patrick graduated from Old Dominion University in 2009 with a BA in Technical & Professional Writing. He then went on to attend George Mason University School of Law and graduated in 2013. Upon passing the Virginia Bar Exam, Patrick went into private practice joining a boutique law firm focused on civil litigation. Patrick gained invaluable experience overseeing pre-trial discovery, responding to complaints, taking and defending depositions, and so forth. Patrick currently practices law in the Richmond, VA area.
This post was written by a guest blogger. Although this article was thoroughly reviewed by NBI staff, the views, opinions and positions expressed within the post are those of the author alone and do not represent those of NBI. The accuracy, completeness and validity of any statements made within the post are not guaranteed. We accept no liability for any errors, omissions or representations.