What future for lawyers?

In such a competitive context it is inevitable to ask what future awaits those who undertake their studies in law or are appearing for the first time in courtrooms. It is from this question that the text by Richard Susskind “The lawyer of tomorrow” (GueriniNext, p. 201, € 21.50) starts.

Susskind, jurist and professor at Oxford, has no doubts: ” in less than two decades the way in which lawyers work will change radically. If they do not adapt traditional law firms will fail ”.

The reasons behind the change are, according to the author, three : the difficulty in accessing legal services (for economic reasons) of an increasingly wide range of citizens and businesses, liberalization (started in some countries – such as England – and subject of discussion in others) and the use of technology (starting from artificial intelligence).

These 3 factors will determine a less and lesser request of the “traditional” lawyer, as we understand it today.

Attention: Susskind does not say that his figure is destined to disappear . Simply to survive will have to acquire new skills both of a hard nature (related, for example, to technology) and soft, relational.

” Intelligent, creative, innovative lawyers, able to devise and articulate new solutions and strategies – describes them in the book – and communicate their suggestions in a highly personalized and customized way”.

In parallel, however, other legal profiles will appear and become established . This is the case of the project management manager – whose task will be to manage the entire procedure – of the online dispute expert or, again, of the R&D employee , who will focus on the design of new services.