Key technologies that can improve access to legal services




Nearly 49% of people encountered legal problems in the last two years, ranging from consumer issues and housing to money and debt. Legal problems impacted 43% of the lives of those affected and less than 29% of those who had legal issues did not seek any advice to resolve their problem. Removing barriers to legal services can increase the uptake of people who need advise.

One way to do this is to use technology that enhances access and availability of legal information and services so that people who require them can examine their options and act accordingly. Improved access also enables consumers to make informed decisions – considering that fewer than 1 in 3 understood their problem as a legal one.

(PHOTO: Courtesy of Tyler Franta). 

Digital marketing technology

The presence of a website is very important for both public and private organizations including law firms and lawyers. It enhances their visibility and is a powerful tool of communication. However, law companies and attorneys can still boost their presence on the web by optimizing their sites for search engines. Put simply, search engine optimization increases the quality and quantity of traffic to a website. It benefits clients and legal service providers by connecting searchers with content that is relevant to their needs. Hence, improving design and content is a strategy to increase traffic so that legal sites are useful to clients.

A website that has quality legal content attracts visitors serving as a resource guide to those who seek different types of information. To illustrate, a person may not have the money to hire a lawyer and can look instead at pro bono options. Using important keywords on the web, they can find feasible solutions to solve their legal problems.

Artificial Intelligence and Chatbots

Another way to make legal information available to clients is to use artificial intelligence. Chatbots in a website can improve customer service as there is always someone to respond to queries of potential and existing clients. Intelligent chatbots can ask user-friendly questions based on legal requirements and fill out legal forms automatically.

Chatbots in Africa are catching up and the future is set for remarkable growth. They are cost-effective to the company and the user as the cost of speaking to a call center agent is higher compared to talking to a chatbot or a virtual agent. According to a Bain & Company study, it costs $4 to speak to a live person compared to 10 cents of a mobile interaction. This practice, therefore, will benefit customers and law firms. In the perspective of a company, chatbots improve customer acquisition, increase revenue, and reduce the cost of serving clients.

Internet of Things (IoT)

The field of law involves several players such as attorneys, law firms, governments, and other stakeholders. Integrating an IoT network ensures that firms and organizations have access to evidence and other data. For example, if a client disputes an over-speeding ticket, the ability to check speed sensors can facilitate a fair and fast verdict.

Improvements in accessing real time data can also change how justice is served. If lawyers and legal assistants can get their hands quickly on the information needed to process a case, set court dates, or prepare a defense, it will be beneficial to both parties because delivery of services is faster and precise. What it, however, entails is to ensure that legal professionals work as a team and that available information is updated and accurate.

Technology can play a critical role in enhancing access to legal services. By using digital marketing tech, artificial intelligence, and the internet of things, more people can hopefully avail of valuable legal advise transforming its function and improving delivery.

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