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David T Kinnear

Change is a dragon. You can ignore it, which is futile. You can fight it, in which case you will lose. Or you can ride it.
– Anon.

I asked Google Translate what the status of our internal flight to Helsinki was on our drive to Joensuu Airport the other day. It reassured us that “Hamburger is cancelled”.

We made it to Helsinki nevertheless.

There is much talk of #AI in law right now – and with good reason. Just like their #Outsourcing #Offshoring #BPO #HRO #RPO industry prequels, early days in #Law of #eDiscovery #CLM and #CRM (and other disciplines) all had their learning curve – and we know well that not all who start the journey, finish it.

But the direction is clear for an industry in which so many practitioners still perpetuate the myth about the value of essentially rote work, the infallibility and irreplaceability of lawyers, and the way in which tech will happily and largely bypass the practice of law.

As international geographical/professional boundaries fall and competitive forces increase, as clients get smarter than their lawyers about how they can get stuff done, as tech eats into the pie of “what lawyers do” – the world changes. And there is no going back.

Even with its known limitations, the promise and potential of tech versus timesheets is an time/cost arbitrage opportunity too great to miss. Tech in law is the modern day equivalent of labor arbitrage in early outsourcing days – fast meaningful (bookable) gains in time, cost and productivity.

We may be at the “VHS tape point” in the #AI tech continuum specifically – but recall how quickly we got to full-on, always-on media streaming. And no one is going back.

I’m asked for my advice for youngsters contemplating law as a career and my advice is get the best grades you can and don’t be afraid of being an independent thinker. If you don’t like tech or you’re threatened by it, think twice. Then consider a different career. Tech isn’t done with law – not by a long shot.

David T. Kinnear
aka: @hipcounsel | Barrister | Mediator | Adjudicator
Publisher: HPC.law | Follow #hipcounsel
London, New York & Dublin


About David

David is a Private Client Barrister, Fractional / Interim General Counsel (GC) and Accredited Civil & Commercial Mediator. He is a Non-Exec. (NED) / Advisory Board member and the Publisher of High Performance Counsel (“HPC”). He is a co-founder and director of Small Claims Portal, a legal technology and services company delivering a turnkey solution for millions of businesses and consumers dealing with small claims litigation. Additionally, he is a co-founder of a legal technology company focused on no-code legal process automation, which was successfully acquired by a leading legal services provider.

David brings 20+ years of business and legal experience to the table for his clients. He provides confidential, cost-effective and timely legal services – advising clients in a variety of civil and commercial matters and representing clients before Courts, Government Regulatory Bodies and in other hearing formats, such as negotiation, arbitration, mediation and adjudication. Instructions may be accepted directly or via chambers for UK and international matters.

David spent his early years in private litigation practice – largely focused on substantial construction, engineering and commercial real estate disputes. David worked for leading law firms Pinsent Masons and Linklaters in London before moving to New York to join Credit Suisse. As Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer, he helped negotiate & execute the relocation of Credit Suisse into its (now) NYC global HQ – the iconic Eleven Madison Avenue.

David has directed major global outsourcing, shared sourcing, HR operations & process efficiency initiatives including the digitization of records, the global roll-out of PeopleSoft HRMS & Y2K Compliance. He has worked extensively in the UK, US, Philippines, India and China markets in the areas of data management, HR and BPO – and most recently LPO, LegalOps.

David graduated from the University of Manchester with Honors in Law and Bar School (College of Legal Education) in London, and has been a member of Middle Temple since 1989.

Member: Bar of England & Wales, American Bar Association, New York State Bar Association, New York City Bar Association, Federation of Integrated Conflict Management, The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, The Society of Mediators, The Civil Mediation Council, and the Mediator Network.

About High Performance Counsel (HPC)

Founded by international lawyer and successful legal technology founder, David Kinnear, High Performance Counsel (HPC) is the leading business media resource covering the modern legal industry and the people, technology and economic forces driving its future. Described as the “voice of the modern legal industry” HPC provides world-class media coverage via one-to-one feature interviews with leading legal professionals and the publication of key insights via articles, white papers and industry commentary.

Visit us online here: High Performance Counsel Follow us on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/HipCounsel Connect with David Kinnear on LinkedIn:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/davidkinnear/ Connect with HPC on LinkedIn:  https://www.linkedin.com/company/hipcounsel Join our mailing list here

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