This lecture outlines how machines are coming both to disrupt the legal profession and to change the optimal form of law. The first section describes the relentless growth of computational capacity. The second section maps five areas in which machine intelligence will provide legal services: discovery, legal search, document generation, brief generation, and prediction of case outcomes. The third section shows how these developments will create unprecedented competitive pressures in many areas of lawyering and an unprecedented age of innovation in legal services.
John O. McGinnis is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. He also has an MA degree from Balliol College, Oxford, in philosophy and theology. Professor McGinnis clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. From 1987 to 1991, he was deputy assistant attorney general in the Office of Legal Counsel at the Department of Justice. He is the author of Accelerating Democracy: Transforming Government Through Technology (Princeton 2013) and Originalism and the Good Constitution (Harvard 2013) (with M. Rappaport). He is a past winner of the Paul Bator award given by the Federalist Society to an outstanding academic under 40. He has been listed by the United States on the roster of panelists who may be called upon to decide World Trade Organization Disputes.