Stacked3Here is my recent Daily Record column. My past Daily Record articles can be accessed here.


LegalTech Trends: 2023 Recap and 2024 Forecast

When I think about the last few years, this Grateful Dead lyric immediately comes to mind: What a long, strange trip it’s been. It’s been quite a year! The one word that accurately summarizes the events of the past few years is “unpredictable.”

In December 2019, a global pandemic and the groundbreaking release of generative AI were not on my Bingo cards for the 2020s predictions. Increased cloud usage, tumultuous politics, and maybe a new social media platform – those would have been reasonable predictions. Instead, as 2023 draws to a close, we’re entering strange new territory.

The full-fledged pandemic seems to be behind us, but its impact continues to be felt. Its long-term effects on our collective health are as yet unknown. What is known is that it ushered in an age of accelerated technology adoption. Lawyers and judges, whom I never imagined embracing technology, are now happily using Zoom, with iPads in hand and smartwatches on their wrists.

The pandemic primed lawyers to be receptive and curious about new technology, and what perfect timing! As we emerged from the cocoons of our homes and returned to the office, in some cases on a hybrid basis, hoping for a return to a semblance of normalcy, a new technology was unleashed.

Generative artificial intelligence (AI) tools like ChatGPT made headlines in early 2023, with analysts predicting the legal profession as one of the most likely areas to be impacted by this new technology. Many lawyers immediately understood its benefits and experimented with generative AI, with some ignoring competency requirements, to their detriment.

In the second half of the year, leading legal technology companies like LexisNexis and Thomson Reuters announced the rollout of this technology across their platforms, and nearly one hundred other companies released beta generative AI tools, with many others in the works. Just a year after the public release of OpenAI’s ChatGPT 3.5, this technology is familiar to lawyers and is increasingly being used by them as trusted legal
technology providers throw their hats into the ring.

In fact, according to MyCase and LawPay’s soon-to-be-published 2024 Legal Industry Report, 27% of the more than 2600 legal professionals surveyed have used generative AI for work-related purposes.

Think about that: in just one year, nearly one-third of legal professionals are already using this nascent technology.

I never would have predicted this high rate of adoption of a new technology in 2019 – or even in late 2022. For that reason, I’m hesitant to throw my hat in the ring with predictions for 2024. I used to be confident in my legal technology predictions, but no more. The unpredictability of recent events has shaken my confidence!

Even so, I’ll give it a shot. I predict that in 2024 the vast majority of legal technology software providers will publicly release generative AI tools into their products, and by the end of 2024, more than 60% of legal professionals will be using it as part of their

As Baby Boomers retire, technology adoption in law firms will increase across the board. E-filing will continue to gain traction and the number of law offices with paperless workflows in place will increase as well. Online document storage and cloud-based legal software such as law practice management platforms will become the norm over the next year or two, as more firms’ operations become cloud-firs. Finally, Flexible payment options for legal services, including payment plans and pay later options, where a third party provides legal clients with loans for legal fees, will increase as legal consumers demand more convenient ways to pay for legal services.

The start of the 2020s was tumultuous and full of change. I expect that over the next few years, the pace of advancements won’t slow down, but lawyers are more prepared than they’ve ever been to acclimate and adjust as needed. Let’s hope that the levels of unpredictability decrease, however. We’ve had enough instability to last us for the next decade, so here’s to smooth sailing ahead in 2024! Cheers, and see you on the other side!

Nicole Black is a Rochester, New York attorney, author, journalist, and the Head of SME and External Education at MyCase legal practice management software, an AffiniPay company. She is the nationally-recognized author of “Cloud Computing for Lawyers” (2012) and co-authors “Social Media for Lawyers: The Next Frontier” (2010), both published by the American Bar Association. She also co-authors “Criminal Law in New York,” a Thomson Reuters treatise. She writes regular columns for Above the Law, ABA Journal, and The Daily Record, has authored hundreds of articles for other publications, and regularly speaks at conferences regarding the intersection of law and emerging technologies. She is an ABA Legal Rebel, and is listed on the Fastcase 50 and ABA LTRC Women in Legal Tech. She can be contacted at