The move is significant as LawGeex is mainly used by corporate legal teams, such as those at eBay and Office Depot, rather than within law firms. LawGeex analyses legal language in individual pre-signature contracts. With auto-redlining functionality, LawGeex marks up non-compliant clauses and adds missing clauses according to the client’s pre-approved legal policies and guidelines, thereby speeding up the review process.
Initially this white label project has launched within the global firm’s important private equity group in London. It is understood that there are other law firms in ‘stealth mode’ with a similar arrangement with LawGeex, but as yet have not chosen to go public.
The deal is also significant as it shows an increased willingness among major law firms to in effect ‘re-sell’ legal tech companies’ software that performs an ongoing service for the end client. We have seen similar deals with LegalSifter and Clarilis working with TLT, as well as Eversheds Sutherland with Autologyx and ThoughtRiver.
In this case, a spokesperson for LawGeex told Artificial Lawyer: ‘We’re seeing an increasing number of cases where the law firm and their client actually come to us together seeking automation to solve a problem.’
The logic behind such moves reflects a scenario where the clients don’t want to pay top law firm rates for routine contract work. And the law firm doesn’t want the client to portion off that work to another lower-cost firm.
It underlines that law firms are increasingly keen to keep ‘process level’ work inside the business if they can do it more efficiently themselves, rather than outsourcing it – primarily to stop revenue leakage.
And it shows that inhouse legal teams are willing to ask external advisers to take on such tasks for them – even though it’s arguable many well-resourced inhouse legal teams could do that work efficiently themselves with a system such as LawGeex or other AI contract review tool.
However, if an external adviser is willing to take on such work, supported by an AI platform that can help automate the pre-signature process, one can see why some inhouse teams would do this. After all, they can now concentrate on more complex matters and also hopefully gain some economic benefit.
Commenting on the deal, Noory Bechor, CEO of LawGeex, said: ‘We believe that our Contract Review Automation tool can help firms like White & Case improve their processes. A tool like ours can play an important role in their strategy.’
While Oz Benamram, White & Case’s chief knowledge officer, added: ‘LawGeex was the clear choice for us. It shortens turnaround time and ensures consistency. We’re proud to be among the first law firms to implement this technology.’
And, Ian Bagshaw, the firm’s global co-head of Private Equity, concluded: ‘This is just the start. AI technologies can and will have a big impact on our transaction business, and we are pleased to be partnering with LawGeex to use AI to improve service and create cost savings.’
Come Along to Two Great Artificial Lawyer Conferences:
Legal Innovators California – June 18 – San Francisco – an all-day conference focused on the intersection of technology and the business of law.
Legal Innovators London – Now over two days – October 7th and 8th – one day on legal services providers, and one day focused on inhouse legal teams.