Major award win for AI-driven legal technology innovation partnership


St John’s Buildings barristers’ chambers has won Technology Venture of the Year at the British Legal Technology Awards 2019. The award was a result of a venture between three major players in the legal services market collaborating to create the first truly automated end-to-end digital solution for insurers, solicitors and counsel using Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Keoghs Solicitors, St John’s Buildings barristers’ chambers and Advanced, the legal software specialist, developed a digital solution using AI which enables Road Traffic Accident (RTA) personal injury cases to be litigated electronically, or identified as requiring a barrister, without the need for human intervention. The system has been in operation since late 2018 and is delivering a rapid, seamless and cost-saving service for clients – from point of accident through to the conclusion of the claim.

Keoghs created Lauri, the first AI litigation product, in 2017. Lauri reads unstructured data and pre-loads personal injury cases at Keoghs. The system can achieve a settlement without any human intervention, meaning avoidable litigation cases can be handled in seconds. Where complexities are identified, Lauri now integrates with Advanced’s MLC barristers case management system and books the case into the MLC diary at St John’s Buildings. It arrives pre-loaded, ready for attention and allocation to a suitable barrister by a specialist clerk.

Chris Ronan, Chief Executive Officer at St John’s Buildings, said: “We are delighted to have won this award for our technology collaboration. The initiative has improved two already award-winning products and is delivering significant time and cost savings for partners and clients. And it’s just the start – we are continuing to work on innovative solutions as the legal sector moves towards a more digitised future.”

Doug Hargrove, Managing Director – Legal – at Advanced, concluded: “We have been proud to play a critical technology role within this collaborative venture. This industry-first approach to interoperability within the solicitor-barrister process is speeding up the move to digital by default. It’s showing how new automation is freeing up both lawyers and clerks and delivering significant savings across the legal network. We’re all excited to realise the opportunity for new developments, all of which are underpinned by innovative and connected technology.”

Dene Rowe, Innovation Director at Keoghs, commented: “Collaboration has been key to the success of this project. Without all three partners working together, we would not be delivering the sector’s first end-to-end digital solution. We are already seeing impressive results and are passing these savings on to our customers, which in turn is encouraging more insurance firms to engage with us.”

The three partners ran a successful pilot in 2018, testing the product on selected personal injury cases. The approved software has now been adopted and the group are firmly committed to ensuring the software makes its way up the complexity and value chain.

The introduction of an automated business process reduces touchpoints, allowing staff to focus on the higher value areas of their roles, such as business development and client care. It removes the importance of office hours and reduces unnecessary human intervention, which increases consistency and accuracy and ultimately provides better outcomes and cost savings for clients.