Indian dispute resolution pioneer, Presolv360, has partnered with iDefendo, a digital proof company, to provide the ODR platform’s customers with an immutable trace-trail of transactions and documents that may become part of a case.
Presolv360 was created to help Indian businesses and individuals to avoid the incredibly lengthy and slow civil court system there – where a civil case can take 13 years on average. And where there are 30 million pending court cases, with 40,000 new cases filed each day in India.
Let’s just step back a moment and consider that number: 30 million pending cases, the vast majority of which will be expected to be heard in a physical court setting, with a judge available and time set aside (which as noted means hearings on-and-off for maybe a decade or more), with witnesses ready and able to attend those hearings, with key documents verified and prepared, and legal teams fully briefed and available across vast timespans. I.e. this is a justice nightmare of gigantic proportions.
Presolv360 helps to avoid court battles by getting parties to insert an ODR clause into new or existing contracts, which are then uploaded to their database. Clients are then encouraged to use the platform’s web-based arbitration service to avoid going to court. The net result is dispute times are massively reduced.
A large part of this time reduction is not just the ODR aspect, but the ability to keep verifiable copies of contracts and other documents. This really matters, as many civil disputes in India relate to land ownership and verifiable records are often patchy – which exacerbates the slow court process.
(See Artificial Lawyer feature on Presolv and more on how civil cases in India take on average 13 years.)
So, now to iDefendo. As you can see from the above, having the ability to not just upload documents, but to provide a verifiable proof that those documents are bona fide and that they will not be tampered with is important.
This is where iDefendo comes in, which specialises in blockchain-based data proof services.
As the company explained: ‘The foundation on which the Proof Platform is built is our Digital Witness technology. A Digital Witness lets you prove that a certain digital information existed at a certain point in time, and that it was at that point associated with you. Backed by multiple blockchains, a Digital Witness provides indisputable evidence of data existence, and is mathematically immutable.’
Peter Jidesten, CEO and co-founder of iDefendo, said. ‘We are very impressed with the work Presolv360 is conducting, and pleased to contribute to its development. The need for our technology in the legal sector is extensive and by this integration, Presolv360 will increase the trust and efficiency of its services.’
Namita Shah, co-founder of Presolv360, added: ‘The existing methods of resolving conflicts are not conducive to the investment and business climate of the country – they are resource-heavy, time-consuming, and inefficient. Our offerings are cost-effective and cut the average time of resolving a dispute from 13 years to a few days.’
While, Kritika Sahni, Principal at Indian law firm, Ajay Sahni & Associates, which is iDefendo’s exclusive strategic partner in India concluded: ‘The integration of iDefendo’s blockchain technology into Presolv360’s ODR platform would bring greater authenticity and provenance of documentation, and increased transparency in the arbitration process. It promises to be a game-changer in the disputes space.’
Artificial Lawyer also spoke at greater length with iDefendo’s Jidesten about the partnership and why it matters.
How important is this move?
It is a big move. Around 17% of the world is Indian. That number alone makes the legal tech scene in India massive. India is a very interesting market, and with the rapid development of the country, there are so many areas that could benefit from the use of our technology. The work Presolv360 does is contributing to solving one of the major challenges within the legal sector, and we are happy to contribute to making their solution even better.
We utilize blockchain technology to create evidence and transparency in the form of Digital Witnesses. The Witnesses can be attached to any kind of datapoint to generate an immutable trace-trail that provides stakeholders with information about transactions and provenance.
Nonetheless, we also designed the system to be technology agnostic wherever possible. We use blockchains today, but we are not bound to use any particular blockchain implementation. Or any blockchains at all, for that matter. Any other future technology that offers similar or better time-stamping functionality can be plugged in and replace blockchains altogether. The same goes for hosting providers, database technology, or network infrastructure. We’ve created a system where each part plugs in and thus can be replaced by another part that performs the same services to the system as a whole.
Does Blockchain have any challenges in India?
Our partners in India experience that the biggest challenge is that India is just as new to blockchain as the rest of the world. However, the country is showing great interest in its benefits and its different applications in society. Several big initiatives have already been taken, both within the public and the private sector. In the state of Andhra, blockchain technology has been adopted to put an end to tampering of land records.
Regarding the use of blockchain in the Indian legal sector, we believe that our Digital Witnesses would qualify as admissible electronic evidence in court. There still haven’t been any reported Indian court cases where blockchain-based evidence has been considered by court, but we hope to be able to contribute to change that.
How did you learn about PreSolv?
We came across Presolv360 through our strategic partner in India, Ajay Sahni & Associates. They take a great interest in innovations within the legal sector and when they heard about the impressive work of Presolv360, they immediately recognized the benefits our technology would bring to their ODR platform.