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Will ChatGPT Replace the Need For Attorneys?

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Written by Adam R. Fracht
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Artificial intelligence has revolutionized many industries, with some predicting that it will eventually replace human workers altogether. One such industry that has been impacted by the rise of AI is the legal profession. However, while AI-powered chatbots such as ChatGPT have made great strides in the legal field, they cannot replace the expertise and experience of human attorneys.

Great introduction, right? That entire paragraph is—verbatim—courtesy of ChatGPT. AI software like ChatGPT has incredible potential in the sense that it is available 24/7, has vast knowledge with a data library updated to 2021, and best of all, it’s free. With the recent news of ChatGPT passing the LSAT, concerns have risen that this technology may ultimately replace the need for human attorneys. Nonetheless, as with all great things, there are limitations, and even ChatGPT knows its limits. While it can draft a basic lease with the click of a button, there are certain human qualities and other factors that AI simply cannot replace.

For starters, as noted above, ChatGPT is not up completely to date with the law. At the time of the date of this publication, ChatGPT only has information up to 2021. Therefore, it is unable to draw on laws or other authorities that have changed since that time. Additionally, there have been reports of misinformation, which decreases credibility.

Even where ChatGPT is drawing from the most updated information, there are still restrictions when it comes to real-life legal practice. Every client has a unique situation and—as amazing as it is—ChatGPT is not able to take every factor into account when determining an appropriate legal strategy.

Likewise, ChatGPT would have great difficulty weighing such factors against each other, which is frequently a complex analysis that also depends on a client’s unique goals and financial circumstances. This is a consequence of the software’s answers being crafted based on the data it’s provided rather than deductive reasoning. 

Perhaps most importantly, ChatGPT will have great difficulty replacing the human element that makes up great lawyering – things like persuasion and charisma. Lawyers are in the business of convincing judges, juries, opposing parties, and even their own clients, to adopt certain positions as the right positions. People relate to people in ways that machines greatly struggle to do – just think of the difference between a customer service call being answered by an automated system versus a real person; as “humanlike” as machines can be, we immediately feel a disconnect when we’re talking with a machine.

While innovations in technology are becoming increasingly advanced and the threat of job replacement is on the rise, there are various roles a computer will never be able to replace. Good lawyering is one of them.


These materials are made available by Stibbs & Co., P.C. for informational purposes only, do not constitute legal or tax advice, and are not a substitute for legal advice from qualified counsel. The laws of other states and nations may be entirely different from what is described. Your use of these materials does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Stibbs & Co., P.C. The facts and results of each case will vary, and no particular result can be guaranteed. The facts and results of each case will vary, and no particular result can be guaranteed.


 

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