January 3 by Brad Blickstein

The legal department should be out of the contracts business since 80% of the time – given the right parameters, expert systems and analytics – individual business units can write their own agreements according to predetermined rules and authorizations.

Take what lawyers want to happen, computerize it, and make it self-service. For new documents, engage Artificial Intelligence to conduct an initial evaluation and highlight any areas of concern.

The future of contracts should ultimately take most of this work away from the legal department, though lawyers will need to establish a comprehensive structure within which business leaders must live when drafting any agreement. It will eventually also feature the simultaneous execution of simple contracts, but that is years away from becoming commonplace in most instances.

In lieu of drafting and negotiating the same provisions over and over again, fewer lawyers will spend more time evaluating risk and leveraging data to better predict where a company will be sued or face a controversy.

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