The gait of technology in the last decade has seen a greater rise, signifying the future as prophesied by George Orwell in his famous novel 1984. Otherwise called as the “Midas touch”, anything touched upon by technology undergoes rapid transformation and the sector of legal advice and assistance has been no stranger to it.

The services were never considered as an industry, as it only constituted of work offered by lawyers to clients. Yet, the technological influence has helped the sector gain an industry status in itself. These are no longer restricted to person-to-person, but come armed with an intermediary who acts as a service provider connecting the clients to lawyers, pumping in several benefits to both parties in the transaction. The rapid evolution of technology has helped law firms to provide better, faster and affordable service to their clients.

Several of the leading law firms have recognised this and are investing substantial amount of money and resources in developing client facing digital workspaces and collaborative applications to implement this practice. Technology and digitalisation have left a piercing impact on the way people consult lawyers, avail legal advice and administer contracts, documents and all corporate necessities. Any person with access to Internet connection can visit the websites of online legal platforms, and choose lawyers at his/her discretion.

Apart from providing the option to choose, it significantly decreases the timeframe while eliminating the requirement of personal meeting with lawyers and replacing it with the simpler process of posting an online query. Although it would be presumptuous to assume a complete transformation, it is certain that a bracing change has taken over the way legal consultation is done in India, although at a gradual pace. An increase in awareness amongst people is inevitable, and the benefit accrues to those who require legal assistance at a location different from where they are.

Online assistance has come especially to the aid of overseas clients in matters like disposing of property, without having to come down solely for that purpose. Same goes for those caught up in busy schedules of work, but requiring legal assistance in drafting a notice, reviewing their contractual agreement, or looking to buy property; all they need to do is approach a reliable online legal platform, and thereon rest assured that the latter would take care of all the rest. Technology has taught humans to seek assistance at every juncture of life and same holds true for legal sector. Integration of technology widens the scope of its functioning opening a plethora of avenues that previously was not possible.

Initiatives taken by online legal platforms in spreading awareness amongst people, while bringing legal aid to their fingertips helps in quick resolution of legal problems. This is leading to greater democratisation of the industry and the constant search for better and more efficient ways of providing legal services. These trends are bound to continue as legal resources and intelligence are becoming increasingly accessible through various technological advances which will lead to relentless changes in configurations and reconfigurations.

(The writer is founder, Legal Resolved)