LONDON, July 20, 2021 / PRNewswire / – LawtechUK, an initiative supported by the government within Technology country, created to help transform the UK legal sector through technology – has published a report on the future of UK legal and judicial services. The report is independent of government and does not represent government policy.
The report, ‘Shaping the future of law‘, highlights the rapid growth achieved in the UK legal technology sector and the opportunity for further growth and widespread digital transformation of the law for the UK economy and society at large, through collaboration and cross-sectoral support.
Produced in collaboration with a range of cross-sector contributors, the report details the benefits of widespread use of technology and data in law and the vital role of legal technology in meeting user needs, including reducing regulatory burdens. and improving decision making for businesses, meeting increasing ESG standards and saving time and money through document automation, data analysis and the use of transformative technologies such than AI and smart contracts.
International trade alone is worth £ 1.153 billion to the UK economy and can be streamlined through digital legal documents and efficient use of data. The benefits of legal technology for consumers include better access to legal services and better, faster, and more affordable outcomes, through DIY apps, asynchronous online services, on-demand advice, and resolution tools. disputes.
In economic terms, the report places the market opportunity for legal technology at up to £ 22 billion per year, based on data commissioned from Frontier Economics, including:
- Unmet demand from SMEs and consumers in the UK estimated at £ 11.4 billion per year.
- Cost savings for SMEs from using lawtech products and services of up to £ 8.6 billion annually.
- Productivity gains through increased use of legal technology by legal service providers, estimated at £ 1.7 billion annually, scalable through adoption of technology and purchasing power of legal services internal.
Lawtech as a rising star
Lawtech is on the cusp of meeting this demand, with the 200 or so UK-incorporated companies attracting a total of £ 674million in private investment through the end of 2020 and employing 7,100 people. The report predicts that UK lawtechs can attract up to £ 2.2bn in investment per year by 2026, as well as create up to 12,500 jobs over the same period, generating a GVA of 1 billion pounds sterling – 1.5 billion pounds sterling by 2026 – around 5% of UK legal services GVA – a ratio similar to the current UK financial and financial services industry GVA of around 6%.
The average annual growth rate of investments in legal technologies in the UK between 2017 and 2020 (101%) exceeded that of other applied technology sectors, notably climate technology (5%), fintech (20% ) and healthcare technology (47%), showing that legal technology as a sector is on an accelerating trajectory as the market matures and consolidates as well.
The fastest growth in legal technology is seen in the regulatory compliance category, growing 214% between 2018 and 2020, addressing the growing burden of legal compliance for businesses, and in the consumer category. and SMEs, which grew 74% over the same period, demonstrating the broader market opportunity for lawtech which can establish its place at the heart of the future economy. The creation, management and review of legal documents has increased by 24% since 2018.
Accelerating Change – The Future of Law
The legal industry is at an inflection point of digital transformation which has been slow to date – the technical capacity and growth of lawtech are now able to meet growing market demand, combined with rapid adoption of certain technologies in the legal sector during Covid-19, and a growing emphasis on the needs of users and society as a whole. Lawtech offers an opportunity to add to economic growth and jobs in the UK, while directly making improvements to the legal system for the benefit of society.
With the government’s investment in innovation at an all-time high, the commitment to build back better after the pandemic, and the focus on digital infrastructure and court reform, the UK has a unique opportunity to consolidate its position as a world leader in law for the future, by investing in lawtech.
LawtechUK calls for collaborative action from the legal industry, regulators, policymakers and businesses to accelerate investment and adoption of legal technology to capitalize on growth opportunities and ensure the future of UK law meets the changing needs of business and society. The report highlights seven priority areas:
- Increases investment in lawtech R&D
- Growth of new markets
- Improved collection and availability of The data, towards an “open legal”
- Bigger connectivity throughout the sector
- Growing technology awareness and ability
- Policy and regulations that supports technology adoption
- Sustainable growth anchored in the object of the law
Lord (David) Wolfson from Tredegar QC, comments: “I would like to congratulate LawtechUK for this important and timely report on the digital transformation in our legal services industry, which is an important contribution to the debate. “
Jenifer Swallow, LawtechUK Director at Tech Nation: “The law is essential in all of our lives and in all of our businesses, and it should be easy to apply, affordable and effective for everyone. Lawtech is how we do it.
“The industry is experiencing incredible growth – with 101% growth in startups and scale-ups in the field of law over the past three years, and adoption levels increasing during Covid-19 in our courts, our businesses legal and our internal legal teams. Building on this growth, working collaboratively across the industry, we can realize all the strategic opportunities of legal technology within an accelerated time frame and achieve results that no organization could achieve on its own – for the benefit of ordinary people. , businesses, the UK economy and the wider global ecosystem. The legal technology market opportunity highlighted in this report only scratches the surface of the true impact we can have through digital transformation in law. ”
LawtechUK is a government-backed initiative within Tech Nation, created to support the transformation of the UK legal sector through technology, for the benefit of society and the economy.
About Tech Nation
Tech Nation is the first scale-up accelerator. Tech Nation fuels the growth of game-changing founders, leaders and businesses so they can positively transform societies and economies.
About the data
LawtechUK tasked Frontier Economics to assess the current and potential economic contribution of legal technology to the UK economy, using a new dataset on legal tech startups and scale-ups, data on d ‘other emerging technology sectors and desk research to provide new insights into the UK legal ecosystem.