At first glance, data science might seem far removed from the field of law. However, many law firms are adopting data science practices to help improve efficiency in their work. Consider what data science is and how it can support your work in the legal field.
What Is Data Science?
Data science is the practice of gathering, reviewing, and using data. Data science has many different applications that affect the types of data and how it’s used. Many industries are beginning to use data science to help them identify trends in demographics, purchasing, or other valuable areas. Often, companies will hire data scientists to structure methods for gathering and parsing data for effective use by the company.
Data Science and the Law
Data science is just starting to impact the legal industry. Many law firms see the value in using data science to help with tasks like assigning pricing, preparing for litigation, improving processes, identifying trends, and supporting clients. Lawyers often use an enormous amount of data when working with clients. Data science can help support a variety of tasks within the legal field.
Improving Your Practice with Data Science
You can use data science to improve your law practice in a number of ways. A few of the most beneficial applications of data science include case assessment, discovery, judgment predictions, and oppositional preparation.
You can use data science to gather data on past case law to see what the common outcomes were for a specific set of circumstances. Assessing this data can help you determine if it’s worthwhile to take on a case or not.
Often, discovery takes an enormous number of man-hours to review. Data science can help aggregate and review material to form trends and identify important information or details within the lengthy pages of the discovery.
You can use data science to review a specific judge’s patterns and preferences. Knowing how a judge responds to specific lines of questioning or presentation of evidence can help you create the most effective argument for your client.
Much like judges, oppositional attorneys have certain preferences, strengths, and weaknesses. You can employ data science to assess their past arguments to create the strongest possible strategy for your client.
Implementing Data Science in Your Practice
You can implement data science methods in your practice in a multitude of ways. Some law firms choose to hire lawyers with a background in data science who can create effective strategies for gathering and parsing the data. Others use computer programs designed to comb through documents and look for trends in language or numbers. Finally, some outsource their data science work to data scientists with no background in law, but who are well-versed in the practices of gathering and evaluating data.
You have a variety of options when considering implementing data science into your law practice. Whether you choose to hire an in-house scientist, use software built for the task, or outsource the work to a professional data science company, know that you’ll have a much deeper, data-backed understanding of the work you do when you use data science.