From the vanguard 🚀

  • NITI Aayog has released a report outlining an ODR policy plan for India to promote the adoption of ADR and ODR platforms in India.

    • The report recommends, among other things, capacity-building measures in the market, a re-look at the regulation of ODR, and implementing ODR in a phased manner — all with the larger objective to make ODR a mainstream (and even primary) mode of dispute resolution.

    • The report titled “Designing the future of dispute resolution” comments on three broad types of challenges restricting ODR adoption in India: (a) structural, such as digital infrastructure and digital literacy, (b) behavioural, such as lack of trust in ODR institutions, and (c) operational.

  • Algo Legal, a Bengaluru-based law firm becomes the first legal practice to extend its profit-sharing arrangement to its associates. Conventionally in the legal services world, profit-sharing has been limited to partners.

    • According to their press release, “any lawyer that has spent over a year at the organisation, will receive a share of the firm’s annual profit, which is over and above the salaries and bonuses that they receive.

    • The motivation for this seems to stem from the firm wanting to create a more entrepreneurial culture at the organisation and giving its members ‘skin in the game’.

  • Lawyers’ Learn, a new online education business with a niche focus on training young lawyers with technology skills, kicks off with its Lawyers Learn Technology programme. This is headed by Bhavin Patel, a visiting faculty at NLSIU with two decades of experience in the legal, tech, and education sectors.

Around the world 🌍

  • Roche Freedman, an American law firm, has partnered with investment platform Republic, to seek contributions from the general public for a dispute between one of its clients and a local government body. By floating what is being termed as an Initial Litigation Offering, the law firm seeks to provide cryptocurrency-based incentives to prospective investors and thereby bring litigation financing to the mainstream.

  • One of UK’s top legal tech firms, Aalbun Analytics has released a software platform that provides a bird’s eye view of developments in the legal tech industry for anyone who wants to stay abreast of patent registrations, trademark data and other happenings in this growing industry.

What’s up at ILT? ☕️

  • On building a market

    • We’ll be publishing a 2.5 hour long, two-part podcast episode with Sachin Malhan, founder of Agami.

    • Sachin explains how Agami is doing the work of market-builders in the law and justice in India, carefully weaving the Indian law and justice through ambitious initiatives, creating public goods, and facilitating systems innovation.

    • The (private) link to the episode is here.

  • A comprehensive glossary of legal tech terms and concepts

    • Earlier this month, we have begun working on developing a free glossary of commonly used terms and concepts in the world of legal technology and innovation. This is to help all stakeholders in the industry have better and more useful conversations with the help of a common understanding and language.

    • The expected date for the first version of the glossary to go live is January 2022.

Quote of the week 💬

“The market for legal services isn’t working well for its participants. Throughout the course of these past 20 years, I’ve seen a lot of people without the money to get their legal problems addressed, as well as others who didn’t even realize that the problems they were experiencing had a legal solution. I’ve seen people who knew they needed a lawyer and were able to afford one still come away vexed and disheartened by their dealings with both lawyers and the legal system. I saw courthouses backlogged with aging cases and a justice system overflowing with confused and frustrated users.

Most remarkably of all, I saw overworked, dissatisfied, unhappy lawyers, labouring every day just to make a living and serve their clients — the only people, you would think, who could still benefit from an otherwise broken-down system.

I looked at all that and thought: “This can’t be right. The market for legal services shouldn’t be this dysfunctional and discouraging for everyone. There’s got to be a better way.”

— Jordan Furlong in his book Law Is A Buyer’s Market: Building A Client-First Law Firm

That’s all for this issue, folks.

Until next time! 👋

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