We live in a world that has been positively and entirely transformed by our own drive to further our species’ progress in evolution. In this world of complete and unfiltered digitalisation and high technological movements, it is a known fact that practically every industry in the modern world has been affected by technological advancement, in some form or another. It is the way of the modern world that progress is an ever-evolving process, and as a result, digitalisation and technological advancement are constants in this digital era. While it is not necessarily the first industry that jumps to mind when one thinks of links to digitalisation, the legal industry is currently undergoing an immense digital transformation. And heading this technological transformation is none other than blockchain. It is a relatively new revelation in the field of law, but it is one that was desperately needed, and one that is creating an entirely new era in lawyer-client relationships.
Technology is transforming the legal industry in all kinds of ways as of late. Whether that is using technology to set reminders and automate TAC compensation payments, or establishing stronger professional relationships between legal professionals and their clients (or any other manner of efforts in between), technological innovation is well and truly here. This is the digital age, after all, and no industry – especially no tone as crucial to societal systems as law – is exempt from these digital waves of advancement and evolution. One of the most beneficial and significant feats of technological prowess to hit the legal industry is of course blockchain. Initially designed to be a fundamental core component in the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, blockchain was eventually realised to be a potential multitool for innovation in the modern age and beyond. So, it began to be considered a core component in many different industries, including (most recently) law.
One of the main benefits of blockchain is its security. And this also happens to be one of the areas that the legal field struggles to ensure complete trust in. Further, the more and more that the digital age deepens, the more people are realising that, considering the cost of hiring a lawyer, trust is paramount – and they finally have the tools to ensure that necessary privacy is enforced: blockchain. The legal industry’s embracement of digital innovation and technological advancement is still quite new, and as such it is still on shaky ground, trying to gain a foothold in a changing world. Its newly forged relationship with technology is manifesting in the changing dynamics of structures in law that establish trust and loyalty between legal professionals and their clients, and vice versa. Blockchain is a system enabled by a network of multiple computer systems, with encryption services framing the blocks to ensure the utmost privacy. But how is the legal industry using blockchain in terms of reaffirming and maintaining trust?
By nature, blockchain is decentralised. What this means is that any information or important forms that are sent between legal professional and client are sent through a secure system, that only the two parties have access to. Considering the fact that blockchain is a concept carried out across varying computers, this makes the stealing or changing of important documents and information practically impossible. Obviously, this creates a sense of emboldened trust between the parties, and it makes clients feel more comfortable, as well as legal professionals feeling more secure in their active engagements. Blockchain does for the field of law what human interaction quite often fails to do: create a sense of secure trust, by establishing and securing information from point A, so that it runs through to point B without being in danger of being compromised or changed in any way. The most exciting part? That this is just the beginning for blockchain disruption in the legal industry.
Technological advancement and rapid digitalisation are as common today as the grocery stores that we get our produce from every week. We have created the modern world around us to be exactly the way that it is, the way that we wanted it to become. Today, feats of digitalisation and technological innovation are increasingly common, even going so far as to entirely transform industries and facets of modern life alike. In the legal industry, for instance, digitalisation is a relatively recent innovation, and it is only just now beginning to take shape. At the forefront of the contributing digital factors in the field of law, is the development and utilisation of blockchain. One of the most consistent problems in the legal industry is establishing and maintaining trust in lawyer-client relationships. Blockchain effectively fills that gap, creating an all-new frontier in security and trust. This is just the beginning for blockchain and law, but it is an exciting and vibrant start, nonetheless.