No matter what size your business, at some point you'll need to start creating documents, policies, and contracts. In the past, this step has generally required the assistance of a lawyer or legal firm to ensure you don't make any costly mistakes.
The trouble is, these legal consultations can be costly as well. For many small businesses, spending $250 or more simply to have a document reviewed is not an acceptable option. Many choose to go it alone rather than spend the money.
Legalshield was started to fill that gap, offering unlimited legal consultation for a low monthly fee. LegalZoom and Rocketlawyer allow entrepreneurs to create contracts from pre-created forms, without needing a lawyer's help at all.
But even that is changing.
As most of the legal advice and contracts people need are fairly common tasks, they are perfect for automation.
Recently, I wanted to create a will, and while there were plenty of forms and kits online to download, I saw Ailira, a Facebook Messenger app that would generate a will for me simply by talking to it. After answering only a few simple questions, I had my will, and all I needed to do was print it out and have it notarized.
I had found other bots that had been created with the same mindset. For example, the "DoNotPay" app was created to automatically appeal parking tickets in certain popular jurisdictions around the world. With only some minor input, a robot will go through all the annoying steps to get your parking ticket removed.
With that in mind, here are some other AI tools to automate even the most daunting Legal tasks.
The most common thing that startups need legal advice for has to do with contracts, whether it is creating or reviewing them.
RobotLawyerLisa drafts NDAs and property documents based on your input. HirePeter acts as your Virtual Lawyer to draft and securely sign documents via email. And Donna.legal reviews contracts for you -- to make sure that there are no "gotchas."
Want to know what the results of a trial will be? Should you sue someone for patent infringement? Relying on another company for your business to go forward? Case Crunch can predict the outcome for you so you can make better decisions.
For entrepreneurs looking to file a patent, you can do almost all of it with AI.
Patentfield helps you to search for prior art, to ensure that what you're working on is unique. Startup Specif.io offers a patent generator that helps to write the first draft of your patent -- complete with figures. Follow that up with TurboPatent's RoboReview to analyze the patent draft to make sure it has a good chance of being accepted, complete with similar patent citation.
A surprising number of technology entrepreneurs in North America have visas, with nearly 500k H1-B visas issued annually toward the 7 million tech jobs available in the U.S. alone. For those who need help navigating the process, Visabot and Destin.ai have entered the ring to help individuals and businesses get all the paperwork in order. This way, you can have as little downtime as possible and get back to the hustle.
But what happens if you have something more complex?
If you need a real person to represent you, or just want to talk to someone, there are answers for that too. UpCounsel and LawScout have created platforms to put lawyers into the gig economy so you only pay when you need them. Others like Lawtrades and Legalshield offer subscription models, giving you a low fee to ensure you're always covered.
In the end, nothing can replace a real person, however, the robots are certainly giving it a go.