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AI and ML in India : Legal challenges and opportunities by Arunima Jha

We all have been subjected to predictive algorithms. So how can we ensure that artificial decision making is respectful of human rights and it does promote human rights? As a lawyer, I worry most about the ethical legal implications of emerging technologies on society. When you allow the software to make life-altering decisions for people it's scary. Are these algorithms better than humans? After all the objective of using algorithms is to remove human biases and help lawyers and judges provide wider access to justice for the common citizens.

To understand AI, it's important to demystify pattern-based AI. There's an issue of transparency when I look at AI technology. And as a lawyer, I feel law and ethics inform each other. The trade-off between the two is artificial. The most effective way of ensuring a sound ethical AI is to have human rights protected. In my experience, it's important to have effective legislation but it's also important to have industry self-regulatory bodies to keep a check on the AI to make sure that the intelligent system is fair.

So does automating lawyering tasks work? Computers are bad at dealing with contingencies that are outside the data collection and with that as background it is highly unlikely to automate lawyering tasks. Precisely also because the underlying work is insufficiently structured to be automated.

Even if we look at the certain aspects of saying a legal brief is certainly consistent across individual instances like introductory or concluding material but much of the meat of the legal brief entails and requires conceptual creativity and flexibility that is beyond the current scope of the machines. There's a complex interplay of law and facts. The facts in question dictate the relevant law but the law tells us which facts are particularly relevant. The use of precedents which becomes second nature for a lawyer makes it exceedingly difficult to automate as the same case can be used to support both the plaintiff and the defendant's case. Making arguments require differentiation between binding holding and the persuasive dicta and also requires placing that one case as the precedents

So how to use the technologies effectively? We shouldn't assume that lawyers are perfect but neither should we assume that technology is the only option. In many cases, legal reasoning by individuals for individuals is constitutive of the legal situation and it is not merely the sole way of addressing the legal situation and that may seem circular, however it puts the lawyers in a different category than other service providers and it's amazing.

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